Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

2019 Descriptions still outstanding

Many thanks to all observers that submitted their records for 2019. However there are still a number of records that require descriptions before they can appear in the Bird Report.

If you were fortunate enough to find (or see) any of these birds below please could you submit a description to the County Recorder Many thanks, stay safe.

Alpine Swift, Dawlish 11 Jun  Hooded Crow, Baggy Point 10 May
Barred Warbler, Thurlestone 30 Aug Long-tailed Skua, Dawlish Warren 11 Oct
Caspian Gull, Thurlestone, 08 Feb Purple Heron, Slapton Ley 07 May
Caspian Gull, Topsham 02 Aug Sabine's Gull, Thurlestone 14 Aug
Cory's Shearwater, Berry Head 19 Jul Serin (2), Harrowbeer 19 Apr
Glossy Ibis, Otter Est 11-13 Mar Tree Sparrow (2), Berry Head 20 Mar


Posted May 2nd at 3:27 pm by Kevin Rylands in General Birding

Coronavirus update - Daily exercise and Bird Hides

Please be aware that in line with Government guidelines on non-essential travel and social distancing, the Devon Birds hides at Beesands, Fernworthy and Roadford, in addition to hides elsewhere in the County including Bowling Green Marsh, Dawlish Warren and Seaton Wetlands are closed until further notice. Whilst some people may be fortunate enough to be within walking/cycling distance of these sites, others should not be making special journeys to visit these areas at this time. Thank you for your co-operation and stay safe.

Please follow NHS guidelines:

Posted April 16th at 12:04 pm by Mike Daniels in General Birding

Sightings page guidelines & rare breeding bird posting restrictions

We welcome contributions from Devon Birds members and the general public. Please follow the guidelines on this page if you have something to post on the blog, remembering to use the relevant subject.

Please post responsibly, never post details of rare breeding, or winter roosts of vulnerable, species. If you are unsure of what to - or not - to post, there are guidelines on the restrictions  here.

Please note:-

1. That Wood Warbler in probable breeding areas should also not now be published

2.  Posts which breach these guidelines may not be published at all. Editors do this job on a voluntary basis and cannot commit to editing out rare breeding bird information in posts which which include wider sightings. Please help us to avoid the need to delete or not admit posts. Thanks.

For help with ID email photos to

Posted January 8th at 9:12 pm by Pete Aley in General Birding


If you follow our Blog but are not currently a member of Devon Birds please consider joining Devon Birds to help with the upkeep of running the website and this service as well as our valuable conservation work.

Posted October 10th, 2016 at 9:14 am in General Birding

Monday 7th October 2019

Berry Head

Seawatching with MD and AR today 1240-1700hrs: 1 Sabine's Gull juv, 1 Little Gull juv, 500+ Kittiwake 20 Pomarine Skuas all juvs, 21 Great Skuas, 86 Arctic Skuas, 1 Arctic Tern, 1 Common Tern, 1 Sandwich Tern, 6 Balearic shearwaters, 1 RTD, 13 Common Scoter approx 6 Harbour Porpoise and 1 Grey Seal.

Posted October 7th, 2019 at 8:59 pm by Mike Langman in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Sunday 6th October 2019

East Soar

Best today was 2 Firecrest in Starehole Valley but also Swallow, 4 White Wagtail, 11 Wheatear, 5 Blackcap, 14 Chiffchaff, 5 Siskin west up the valley, 45 Goldfinch & 200 Linnet.

Posted October 6th, 2019 at 4:21 pm by Rob Macklin in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Friday 4th October 2019

Slapton Ley

Highlights were the male Scaup still in the Tufted Duck flock out from the Tank car park at Torcross and a female type Marsh Harrier seen dropping into the reeds in Ireland Bay around midday. Elsewhere Black Swan spoiling the view, Little Egret in the Cormorant roost ( only a casual visitor here ), 5 Mediterranean Gulls, 2 Common Terns and 2 Wheatears. Anyone else notice a lack of Starlings at the moment ? 

Posted October 4th, 2019 at 3:18 pm by Perry Sanders in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Thursday 3rd October 2019

East Prawle

Seawatch 7.00am till 9.45am in strong southerly winds.  1 Black-throated Diver west  at 7.55am (my first of the autumn)  7 Balearic and 3 Manx Shearwaters west . 2 probable Cattle Egrets flew west at 7.15am . A probable Pomarine Skua west at 9.05am. 607 Gannets west.  67 Kittiwakes and 6 Common Scoter west. 4 Med.Gulls west.

Also  a pod of 6 Harbour Porpoises and later a pod of 6+Bottle-nosed Dolphins. Small passage of Swallows and Meadow Pipits west. Over the Hump lots of Linnets, Meadow Pipits and Swallows, and the first of 3 sightings of Merlin. Several Painted Ladies and lots of Red Admirals. Lots of Cirl Buntings and Yellowhammers in sheltered places near the front. (Didn't see any of Alan's Goldcrest 'fall' towards the seashore such is birding in the Prawle area)

Later a few Chiffchaffs and Blackcaps, and 3 Northern Wheatears at the Airfields. 

I dreamt of finding a Black and White Warbler last night , but I don't think that counts !

Posted October 3rd, 2019 at 11:29 pm by Tony Marchese in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

East Prawle.

At Moorwell Pond this morning the first significant influx of Goldcrests of the autumn, with 20/25 around the site ( 11 caught and ringed ).Also present 4 Chiffchaffs, 8 Blackcaps, a Peregrine overhead and a flock of 30+ Linnets around the airfield.

It's. Yr. M. Goldcrest.
It's. Yr. M. Goldcrest.

Posted October 3rd, 2019 at 1:24 pm by Alan K Searle in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Wednesday 2nd October 2019

Middle Soar to Southdown Farm.

An afternoon visit so no chance of vis mig but did get 2 Sparrowhawk, female Merlin, Snipe, male Great Spotted Woodpecker (migrant), 12 Swallow, 4 White Wagtail, 3 Pied Wagtail (migrants), 200 Meadow Pipit, 3 Wheatear, 17 Stonechat, 11 Blackcap & 17 Chiffchaff.

Non-avian; 162 Red Admiral, Peacock, Small Tortoiseshell, 5 Comma, 5 Painted Lady, 2 Wall, Clouded Yellow, 15 Large White, 14 Small White & 8 Common Darter.

Posted October 2nd, 2019 at 8:14 pm by Rob Macklin in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

East Soar and South Huish Marsh

Pretty lively at East Soar this morning (8.45 am to 12.45pm); 1 Merlin, 1000+ Swallows moving through, 30+ House Martins, hundreds of Meadow Pipits (1000+?), 1 Whinchat, c10 Wheatears, c10 Blackcaps, c30 Chiffchaffs, 1 Cettis Warbler, 2 Firecrests, c5 Goldcrests and c300 Linnets etc.

At South Huish Marsh briefly, early pm: 6 Mediterranean Gulls in with the Black-headed and a lone Yellow Wagtail.

Posted October 2nd, 2019 at 6:15 pm by Andy Smith in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Clennon Valley

Yellow-browed Warbler first calling then seen in tall leylandii trees in my back garden, before flying off over my house and toward gardens and Clennon Lakes, I failed to relocate it. Around the lakes 11 Chiffchaff, 9 Blackcap, 1 Goldcrest, 2 Kingfishers, 7 Teal, 10 Gadwall, 8 Tufted Ducks, 4 Little Grebes, 3 Little Egrets, 1 Water Rail, 1 Snipe. 

Posted October 2nd, 2019 at 11:24 am by Mike Langman in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

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