General Birding

Missing Devon rarity records 2018 UPDATE

We have had a good response to the request for missing descriptions for a number of ‘A’ species reported in 2018. Thank you to those who have made the effort to provide these.

However some descriptions remain outstanding meaning, as things stand, they will not make the official record as part of the 2018 Devon Bird Report. It would be a great shame to lose these records but the report deadline is pressing.

If you saw any of these birds (you don’t have to be the finder) please can you submit a description and/or photos asap to Kev Rylands: Recorder@devonbirds.org Thank you.

 
Cory’s Shearwater (2) Ilfracombe 28 July
 
Cory’s Shearwater Thurlestone 26 August
 
Glossy Ibis Exe Estuary 21-27 October
 
Golden Oriole Blaxton Meadow 18 April
 
Great White Egret Exminster Marshes 30 March
 
Great White Egret Exmouth 06 May
 
Honey-buzzard Dartmoor 21-22 May
 
Pectoral Sandpiper Upper Tamar Lake 13 August
 
Rose-coloured Starling Beesands 27-28 August
 
Tree Sparrow Haldon 20 May

Posted September 24th at 8:44 am by Pete Aley in General Birding

Dawlish Warren

Please take extra care when visiting Dawlish Warren. We have been informed that due to the recent bad weather there has been significant erosion from Groyne 10 eastwards. This means that access along the site, to and from Warren Point (and the bird hide) will be via the beach only, with a risk of being cut off for a period either side of high water! Signs have been put up to alert people to the hazards, but people need to be aware that access routes that they have become used to may not be available and they need to exercise extreme caution,  with the possibility of being cut off by the tide, and people are strongly urged not to try climbing the sand cliffs. Further information is available on the Teignbridge District Council website.

Posted November 9th, 2018 at 11:08 am by Mike Daniels in General Birding

Membership

If you follow our Blog but are not currently a member of Devon Birds please consider joining Devon Birds to help us 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 by George & Julia Harris in General Birding

Sightings Page Changes

Acting on comments to Devon Birds some changes have been made to this page. To the right of this header post you'll see there are now several subjects for you to choose to read and post on. Just click your chosen subject and use as previously.

Please be careful not to post under the wrong subject. If you do, you can still easily go back to edit and change the subject yourself so it appears on the right page.

Please try and keep posts short, particularly in the Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts page. Photographs are still very welcome.  

For help with ID email photos to id@devonbirds.org.

Posted June 30th, 2016 at 9:24 pm by George & Julia Harris in General Birding

Sunday 10th November 2019

Plym Estuary

On Blaxton Meadow late afternoon: Kingfisher, 13 Oystercatchers, 29 Curlews, 3 Greenshanks, 119 Redshanks, 85 Dunlin & 21 Shelducks.

Posted November 10th at 5:47 pm by Pete Aley in General Birding

Exeter Hawfinches (probably)

A flock of 8-10 large-finch-sized birds flew across the river as I was walking home at around 1430, but disappeared into the trees around Larkbeare House before I could get the bins on them. The flight call matches some of those from Belgium and elsewhere on xeno-canto, so I am pretty sure.

Will look for them in the morning; probably best to watch from the West bank, or maybe Colleton Hill.

Posted November 10th at 4:37 pm by James Camden in General Birding

Torquay Harbour

15.15

9 Purple Sandpipers and 8 Turnstones at Haldon Pier. 

Posted November 10th at 3:39 pm by Paul Darlington in General Birding

Occombe, Paignton

For the second time in the last couple of weeks a solitary Redwing, where are all the others? Good sightings of a pair of Buzzards, a small flock of about 20 Goldfinch. Green Woodpecker and a Jay in the orchard. Around the feeders in front of the hide were numerous Great Tits, several Blue Tits, plus Blackbird, Robin, Dunnock and a Nuthatch.

Posted November 10th at 12:55 pm by Stephen Huggins in General Birding

central park plymouth

Around 70 ringneck parakeet 

Posted November 10th at 9:10 am by barry insull in General Birding

Saturday 9th November 2019

Exe Estuary cruise

The first Stuart Lines birdwatching cruise of the winter went well after a very wet start. Highlight was a Red-throated Diver feeding close to Exmouth marina. Slavonian and Little Grebes off Cockwood; maybe a dozen Great Crested Grebes; plenty of Shags, hundreds of Brent Geese and Wigeon, maybe 200 Shelduck, three-figure flock of Pintail and 2 Black Swans at Lympstone, less than 20 Red-breasted Mergansers in total, approx. 300 Avocets, c10 each of Ringed Plover and Greenshank, several hundred each of Golden Plover, Dunlin and Black-tailed Godwit, small numbers of Grey Plover, Knot, Sanderling and Turnstone; 3 separate Kingfishers at Topsham, Turf and Exmouth.

Posted November 9th at 9:37 pm by Dave Smallshire in General Birding

Lower Tamar Lake

This morning on the lake.

9 Goosander 4m 5f, 9 Willow Tit, 4 Marsh Tit, 1 Little Egret, 12 Tufted Duck, 15 Fieldfare, 8 Great Crested Grebe, 9 Long-tailed Tit

Posted November 9th at 7:24 pm by Rod Mudge in General Birding

Whitleigh plymouth

5 ringneck parakeet 

Posted November 9th at 4:33 pm by barry insull in General Birding

Mansands

13.15-14.45

Blue-winged Teal showed well on the main pool for at least an hour. Viewed from main track 50m inland from the cottages and the lime kiln. Several Snipe present. Two female Black Redstarts and a Chiffchaff on a barbed wire fence near the cottages. 

Posted November 9th at 2:53 pm by Paul Darlington in General Birding

Friday 8th November 2019

Woodbury Common

Two Short-eared Owls hunting at dusk below Warren Car Park this evening.

Posted November 8th at 8:04 pm by Chris Townend in General Birding

Crossbills

25+ crossbills at Burrator, in pines along Drakes Leat , very close views.

Posted November 8th at 7:43 pm by Vic & Sylvia Tucker in General Birding

Downend, Baggy Point, R.Caen, Wrafton Pond

No Scoters at Downend or Baggy point early am but 9 Gannet flying north & a few Porpoise swimming south at Downend. At about 16.00, 1 Juv Great Crested Grebe on R.Caen. Single Goldeneye & 2 Scaup still on the Pond at Wrafton.



Posted November 8th at 6:32 pm by Rob Jutsum in General Birding

Velator ringing

Very productive:

Highlights were:

1 female Cetti's Warbler

1 Goldcrest

1 Firecrest

1 Kingfisher (no 17 this year)

4 Bullfinch

7 Goldfinch

6 Chiffchaff

5 Blackcap

8 Blackbird

5 Redwing

17 Long-tailed Tit

Some sort of delayed migration after all the bad weather?

Posted November 8th at 5:31 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Haldon and Teign Estuary

A few Crossbills feeding at the main car park on Haldon. At Passage House on the Teign Estuary 2 Kingfishers and 3 Dunlin, 2 Common Sandpipers amongst the Redshanks. Usual gulls, nice to see two Little Grebes towards the opposite bank.


Posted November 8th at 5:30 pm by Simon Bates in General Birding

Ernesettle

Seen at lunch time before the tide came in 46 Snipe & 1 Firecrest in the tree’s near the rail bridge.

Posted November 8th at 2:43 pm by Martin Phillips in General Birding

Cancellation of fieldtrip (SAT 9 Nov) and change to later Programme.

Please note that the EAST Devon Branch fieldtrip planned for Blackhole Marsh, Seaton tomorrow (SAT 9 NOV) has been cancelled due to a forecast of adverse weather conditions with heavy rain predicted for the morning.

Also, the next fieldtrip is scheduled for TUESDAY 19 November to Ham Wall, Somerset and not the 18th as given in the Programme. 

AND... please note that the fieldtrip on Thurs 12 DEC (a visit to Woodbury Castle), will NOT include an indoor meeting as advertised on the Programme.  Sorry folks

 

Posted November 8th at 11:22 am by Jonathan Ruscoe in General Birding

Thursday 7th November 2019

Haldon to BGM

Haldon Forest, two Crossbill, good movement of Wood pigeon overhead, two GSWP, Siskin, Song Thrush, Mistle Thrush, Redwing, Pied Wagtail.

Around Exminster marsh four Greylag Geese in with the Canada geese, Heron and several Little Egret, good numbers of Starling and a build up of Lapwing.

RSPB BGM ~ Ten Greylag Geese flew in on the high tide, lots of Redshank with good numbers of Dunlin, six Pintail duck, Shoveller, Teal, Wigeon, Little Grebe the Long Billed Dowitcher eventually showed well, all be at the back of the marsh, several Snipe.

 

Posted November 7th at 5:13 pm by Steve Hopper in General Birding

Stover Lake

This morning at Stover, 4 Goosanders (2 male, 2 female type), 1 male Pochard, 32 Coot, 23 Tufted Duck, 4 Mandarin, 1 Kingfisher

Posted November 7th at 11:38 am by Nick Potter in General Birding

Wednesday 6th November 2019

Velator

After a flog around West Cornwall chasing Pipits yesterday, a slight break in the weather this morning allowed a short ringing session. Mostly Tits this time including 7 Long-tailed Tits, also a Goldcrest, 2 Blackbirds, 2 Goldfinch and a juvenile male Sparrowhawk. 2 Water Rails seen.

Nothing on the scrape - large thresher type machine cutting hedges by the large barn. Also evidence of progress with the project for wind generated energy: two tethered balloons (rather than kites) down near the estuary.

Posted November 6th at 7:57 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Downend

am:- 44 female Common Scoters at Downend this morning but further out to sea.


Posted November 6th at 5:37 pm by Rob Jutsum in General Birding

Countesswear - Starcross; Dawlish Warren - Dawlish

Along the canal and in the adjacent ditches, at least seven each of squealing Water Rails and singing Cetti's Warblers;

On Exminster Marsh, a female Sparrowhawk spooking the ducks;

In the estuary, at least 150 Avocet, at least 600 Golden Plover, good numbers of commoner waders, and several each of Great Crested Grebe and Red-breasted Merganser;

Between Turf and the cycle bridge, a Cirl Bunting singing from a thorn bush;

From the cycle bridge, at least twenty of the Pintail which have "gone missing" from BGM;

From the sea wall, a Red-throated Diver (my first of the year) and twenty-five Common Scoter.

Didn't check the flooded field at Starcross, so missed the Cattle Egrets, but still over eighty spp. for the day.

Posted November 6th at 5:14 pm by James Camden in General Birding

Haldon Forest

Views of 3 mobile Hawfinches this morning. Also 1 male Brambling and a small group of Crossbills,

Posted November 6th at 1:28 pm by Nick Potter in General Birding

Haldon Pier, Torquay

A single Purple Sandpiper back at Haldon Pier this morning.


Posted November 6th at 11:23 am by Steven O'Donoghue in General Birding

Crossbills Haldon

Distant view just west of car park last Sunday



Posted November 6th at 9:12 am by Geoff Mitchell in General Birding

Raptors at Charlton Marsh

On Monday 4 November, a female Sparrow Hawk traversed the marsh in front of the hide then flew tight along the  wooded bank on the east of the marsh.

Shortly after, a juvenile male Peregrine hovered briefly over the marsh.  He was joined by an adult female as he headed for the foreshore, possibly teaching him the pair hunting technique used by local birds.

Female Sparrowhawk
Female Sparrowhawk

Juvenile Male Peregrine Falcon
Juvenile Male Peregrine Falcon

Posted November 6th at 8:30 am by Michael Woodman Smith in General Birding

South Brent

Tawny owl calling at home just on first light.

Redwings in good numbers moving as soon as it was light enough to see, two small flocks of Fieldfare over, the Redwings again dropping into Holly trees to feed on berries.

The Wood pigeon migration again under way with up to 500 birds passing by in flocks of up to 50 birds mostly headed west and out towards the A38 valley by sunrise at 07.13hrs.

A further watch up to 08.20hrs gave a total of 2000 plus Wood pigeons, 3 Stock Dove, a flock of 100 plus Jackdaw, two flocks of Fieldfares one of 50 plus and a flock of 22 with Redwings beyond counting.

Fieldfares

Wood pigeon migration

Posted November 6th at 7:24 am by Steve Hopper in General Birding

Tuesday 5th November 2019

Hawfinch - Haldon

3 hrs of observation this afternoon at the usual location at Haldon, including a walk through the woods, eventually at 3.30pm gave up a brief view and record photo of one Hawfinch. The presence of a Sparrow Hawk on the pylon wire may account for the few birds, other than pigeons, present! Never saw any Crossbill!

Posted November 5th at 9:24 pm by Dave Pakes in General Birding

Woodbury Common

Male Hen Harrier and Merlin again late this afternoon hunting around Grenade Range.

Posted November 5th at 7:08 pm by Chris Townend in General Birding

Exe estuary

From Cockwood steps at high tide - a real mix of summer and winter 3 red-breasted mergansers, one little grebe, one great crested grebe and the Slavonian greb, also two sandwich terns.

At Bowling Green the long-billed dowitcher showed well if distant, early afternoon.

Yesterday a great northern diver off Exmouth in the Duck Pond.

Posted November 5th at 5:52 pm by John Waldon in General Birding

Yelland, n. devon - scaup

3 juv(?) scaup diving off the old Yelland power station outflow adjacent to the roost this morning at 11:30.

Posted November 5th at 1:22 pm by alan craddock in General Birding

South Brent ~ Wood pigeon migration

Between 07.10hrs and 08.30hrs this morning over South Brent westward movement of Wood pigeons mostly small flocks of 40 plus birds but one flock of 400 plus birds, not as many as reported elsewhere but some 1500 birds counted in that time.

Eight Stock Dove, good numbers of Redwing, smaller numbers of Fieldfare with one flock of 25 birds, a flock of some 30 plus Chaffinch dropped it to a boundary field hedge.

Very close up views of a Tawny owl that was being given a hard time by a pair of very raucous Jays.

 

Posted November 5th at 9:26 am by Steve Hopper in General Birding

Monday 4th November 2019

Budleigh Salterton

Three Firecrest around the town today. One along the Otter, just south of White Bridge, another on South Farm Road and the third bird along the West Cliffs.

Firecrest, Budleigh Salterton by Chris Townend

Posted November 4th at 10:04 pm by Chris Townend in General Birding

Exeter Higher Cemetery

Quick visit to see if any Redwing had returned and wasn't disappointed. About 6-8 mainly around/feeding on Yew Tree berries especially the large Yew in the north-west corner of the cemetery..Also Jay, Green Woodpecker, Greenfinch, a brief glimpse of a Goldcrest pair and all the usual tits etc. 

Green Woodpecker    Greenfinch    Green Sandpiper (Northbrook, viewed from Rifford Road)
  Green Woodpecker            Greenfinch            Green Sandpiper (Northbrook, viewed from Rifford Road)

Posted November 4th at 3:52 pm by Martin Rooney in General Birding

Wembury

1 Male Firecrest in the ivy on the side of the road, by the ford lane entrance to the bridal path. 

Posted November 4th at 2:01 pm by Matt C in General Birding

Sunday 3rd November 2019

Teigngrace

Three Green Sandpipers on the floods this afternoon.

Posted November 3rd at 8:28 pm by Will Salmon in General Birding

Torbay and South Brent

A funny old days birding ~ Up at first light movement of Redwings coming into feed in the Holly trees around the house field, Heron overhead.
 
On the way to Broadsands another Heron seen at Dartington.
 
Broadsands coastal was a big round zero, calm sea but nothing of any interest to be seen, in the back car park briefest views of a foraging Firecrest, one Goldcrest, Bullfinch, Jay and a large flock of high flying Wood pigeons headed west down the coast.
 
Around Brixham harbour and the Shoalstone again nothing of any note seen.
 
Youngs Park several Tufted duck, one Heron, Jay, Wrens and another flock of westward bound high flying Wood pigeons.
 
Back home at South Brent, Redwings feeding on Holly berries up until dusk and while watching them a tiercel Peregrine came in over at low level checking out my pigeon lofts (or at least checking out the contents !!)

Posted November 3rd at 5:29 pm by Steve Hopper in General Birding

Velator

The reserve was positively bursting with birds late this morning (well, compared to yesterday - 3 species recorded)!

Good numbers of Tits, Finches and Redwings, and the first Reed Bunting for several months. Sparrowhawk over again. Little Egret out on the scrape.

A Speckled Wood (last butterfly this year?) and a Migrant Hawker were on the wing along with several Bumble Bees.

Oddly with all the mud in the water yesterday, there was a Dipper in the river by the bridge.

Jay and Nuthatch in my garden early on.

 

Posted November 3rd at 5:23 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Hope's Nose

14.25-15.10

Male Black Redstart showing well in the quarry.

Posted November 3rd at 4:16 pm by Paul Darlington in General Birding

Plym Estuary

Snipe, Kingfisher & 6 Greenshank on Blaxton Meadow this morning. Four Mandarin Ducks & a redhead Red-breasted Merganser on the estuary.

Posted November 3rd at 4:09 pm by Pete Aley in General Birding

03-11-19 Redwings and Mistle Thrush at FPC

Redwings and Mistle Thrushes back in Ford Park Cemetery, but no sign yet of the Black Redstart

Redwing
Redwing

Mistle Thrush
Mistle Thrush

Posted November 3rd at 12:41 pm by Greg Bradbury in General Birding

Isley Marsh.

Now 4 Spoonbill on Isley roosting on this mornings high tide .      Around 200 Teal and 12 Black tailed Godwit on adjacent Gaya trust pond.    Just 5 Med gulls on river Torridge.

Posted November 3rd at 12:21 pm by Malcolm Shakespeare in General Birding

Kingswear

Prompted by Peter Reay's report on 31/10/19 of inland sightings of Black Redstarts I had an early morning look at some of their favourite roofs, above the Lower Ferry, in Kingswear today.I quickly came across 3 together on a roof catching the early morning sun.



Posted November 3rd at 11:28 am by Steven O'Donoghue in General Birding

Saturday 2nd November 2019

Merlin - Dawlish Warren

Female Merlin chasing pipits over Dawlish Warren Beach at 4.45 this afternoon. Then flew off very low over the sea towards Dawlish.

Posted November 2nd at 8:15 pm by Peter & Carole Leigh in General Birding

Plymouth

Two Eiders, a Great Northern Diver & a Grey Seal in the Sound, a Pheasant on the Hoe, a Common Sandpiper in the Cattewater & on the lower Plym Estuary, 33 Turnstones & 3 Little Grebes.

Posted November 2nd at 5:17 pm by Pete Aley in General Birding

Bowling Green Marsh

Long-billed Dowitcher and a few snipe around, plus the usual

Posted November 2nd at 11:48 am by Tim Smith in General Birding

Friday 1st November 2019

Blackcap in Exeter

First Blackcap of the winter (male) at garden feeders this morning.

Posted November 1st at 5:52 pm by Martin Overy in General Birding

Wrafton Pond

By the time I go to Wrafton Pond, it was coming on dusk, needless to say the Scaup wasn't showing, but a pair of Tufted Duck, and a pair of Gadwall were, along with a lone female Goldeneye and a notable increase in Coot numbers.

Posted November 1st at 5:06 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Berryhead

Three black redstarts in the quarry near the wire fence, also a woodcock flushed out from the quarry and flew around twice then out over the headland.

Posted November 1st at 3:10 pm by roger jewell & mike gibson in General Birding

Goosander and Fieldfare Hennock Reservoirs

There are now 24 Goosander on Tottiford Reservoir, including 3 males. Nearby about 30 Fieldfare flew in from the south east preceded by 7 Mistle thrush. First Fieldfare I’ve seen this season. 

Posted November 1st at 1:49 pm by Fiona Freshney in General Birding

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