Devon Bird Sightings: Bird News from 22nd–31st December 2019

Coronavirus - Devon Birds bird hides

During the ongoing Coronavirus outbreak the use of Devon Birds bird hides should be in line with Government guidelines to individuals on how to protect themselves.

Please follow NHS guidelines: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/social-distancing/what-you-need-to-do/

Thank you for your co-operation and stay safe.

Posted August 25th at 9:58 am by Mike Daniels in Bird News

Changes to Devon Bird Sightings

This page was initially set up to give a concise news summary of birds of interest seen in Devon. Anyone noting interesting species, passage and counts could post the details to inform other birders what was going on around the county. Photos could also be added for interest and to enliven the posts. It was accepted that because other wildlife was of interest, this would also appear especially when included in a birding post.

However, in the last year, more posts have been appearing purely on subjects other than birds. Whilst of interest to some observers, this is detracting from the aim of the pages, i.e. principally bird sightings.

Devon Birds has therefore taken the decision to require contributors of other wildlife to post this in the Other Wildlife subject. However it’s accepted that occasional, exceptional, other wildlife seen during a birding outing justifies inclusion in the bird sightings post. This should, however, be a minor part of the post.

Photos are often appearing as a gallery, or even acting as a personal photo blog, rather than of county-wide sightings of interest. Devon Birds has a Gallery which members and other birders are welcome to submit their often stunning photos to, for others to see. Many of these photos need not then appear on this page. From now on, only two photos per post will be accepted to help keep posts more concise.

Devon Birds very much welcomes posts that already meet these criteria and those that will continue to do so. It would also be great to widen the input from keen birders who currently don’t contribute, including some old friends who have dropped out. Hopefully the changes will encourage wider participation, so if you look at the site but don’t post, please consider doing so.

Our aim is to provide a concise daily news summary of bird sightings around Devon, and these changes should fulfil this goal.

Below is a summary of the changes:

  • Bird News (bird sightings of interest, with added occasional other wildlife) will be the default subject when visitors arrive at this page.
  • Other Wildlife posts therefore won’t initially be shown unless visitors click Other Wildlife under Subjects on the right-hand side.
  • Only two photos can now be submitted per post.
  • General bird photos should be posted in our Gallery please.
  • Co-authors should now only use the Submit a Blog Post form, to ensure a more consistent format for posts.

Posted August 21st at 3:53 pm in Bird News

Membership

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 Bird News

Tuesday 31st December 2019

Lapwings

A fock of 30 or so lapwing between Chillaton and Lifton

Posted December 31st, 2019 at 5:20 pm by B.albrighton in Bird News

elberry cove - broadsands

kestrel hunting on green between elberry and Broadsands around noon.

yesterday, at elberry after swimming, 2 bees (honeybee type) landed and rested on my yellow swimming cap lying on a rock

Posted December 31st, 2019 at 4:21 pm by graham folkerd in Bird News

Plym Estuary & Saltram

The female Goldeneye still around on the falling tide this morning (north end); also, 5 Goosanders (drake + 4 redheads), 2 Great Northern Divers, 6 Mandarin ducks (3 pairs), 8 Wigeon (4 pairs), 14 Snipe, Jack Snipe, Kingfisher, 4 Shags, Great Crested Grebe, 6 Greenshanks, 42 Turnstones, Sparrowhawk & 8 Roe Deer.

Posted December 31st, 2019 at 2:16 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Newton Abbot

Male Scaup on the lake at Decoy Country Park this morning. Also 29 Tufted Ducks, and Firecrest in the woods.

Posted December 31st, 2019 at 12:33 pm by Will Salmon in Bird News

Monday 30th December 2019

Glossy Ibis still pottering around Fremington Pill

Bird feeding , 30/12/19 around 11.45 a.m. at upper end of pill. GR SS517327  Weather: sunny with light wind.  It has, more usually, been seen (by me, at least) around the outfall, lower down the pill.  


Posted December 30th, 2019 at 11:04 pm by John and Wendy Ward in Bird News

Plym Estuary & Saltram

The Goldeneye was my 106th species of the year here (thanks Martin). Additions to his sightings: Common Sandpiper 2, Lapwing, Firecrest, Stock Dove 2, Great Spotted Woodpecker & Mandarin 4 (2 pairs).

Posted December 30th, 2019 at 6:56 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Otter Estuary Area & Otterton STW

A Cattle Egret in fields N of White Bridge this afternoon just south of the Aqueduct. At least 4 Red-throated Divers off Otterton STW and a Black Redstart in fields just west of Brandy Head.

Posted December 30th, 2019 at 6:43 pm by Chris Townend in Bird News

Plym Estuary/Blaxton Meadow

On this mornings high tide, the following were seen.

Gt N Diver 3, Goldeneye (f), Goosander 5 (3m),  Gt Crested Grebe and Little Grebe 8. On Blaxton Meadow, Curlew 93, Dunlin 209, Redshank 143, Greenshank 3, Wigeon 8 (4prs) and Common Gull 4.

Posted December 30th, 2019 at 6:22 pm by Martin Phillips in Bird News

Baggy Point

47 Common Scoters + 1 Red throated Diver at Baggy Point this morning.

At Croyde Bay 6 Mediterranean Gull, 98 BH Gull, 3 Common Gull & 11 Oystercatchers.


Posted December 30th, 2019 at 6:14 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Ilfracombe and Woolacombe

Black Redstart that Martin Thorne reported last week near the Landmark,plus 2 Blackcap,4 Goldfinch and all the locals enjoying the sun.Woolacombe dunes turned up a flock of well over 200 Linnets.

Black Redstart
Black Redstart

Linnet
Linnet

Posted December 30th, 2019 at 6:10 pm by john elvin in Bird News

Brixham Breakwater

My first visit to Brixham breakwater, saw my first ever Purple Sandpipers. Also good views of Great Northern Divers, Gannets, Turnstones and a solitary Guillemot. 

Purple Sandpiper
Purple Sandpiper

Guillemot
Guillemot

Gannet
Gannet

Posted December 30th, 2019 at 5:42 pm by Duncan Leitch in Bird News

Beesands

Firecrest. Among c.50 Tuffed duck,the ad male R / n duck.

Posted December 30th, 2019 at 4:23 pm by Vic & Sylvia Tucker in Bird News

Slapton Ley

Highlight 3 Cattle Egrets mobile around area, first seen Stokeley Bay, later by Ireland Bay. Black-necked Grebe still present. Also 2 Gadwalls, Wigeon, 7 Goldeneyes ( 3m ) and 3 Pochards. c600 Herring Gulls and c300 Black-headed Gulls including one with a full hood. Nice view of an Otter out from the Stokeley Hide. The sea is deathly quiet, just a single Red-throated Diver off the monument.

Posted December 30th, 2019 at 3:40 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Plymouth Breakwater

Breakwater 10am today:

31 Purple Sandpiper

approx 450 Dunlin,

4 Knot

1 Grey Plover

plus one porpoise nearby

Dunlin Turnstone Knot
Dunlin Turnstone Knot

Dunlin
Dunlin

Posted December 30th, 2019 at 2:58 pm by Rupert Kirkwood in Bird News

Haldon Pier, Torquay

9 Purple Sandpiper at end of Pier at lunchtime 

Posted December 30th, 2019 at 2:02 pm by Steve Cox in Bird News

Coryton cove,Dawlish

4 great northern diver, yesterday offshore

Posted December 30th, 2019 at 11:57 am by paul barker in Bird News

Starling murmuration

Atmospheric sunset backdrop to starlings returning to roost at Okehampton Camp yesterday evening. Must have been 5 or 6000 I guess although could be more- a tricky thing to assess I find. 

Posted December 30th, 2019 at 10:51 am by Fiona Freshney in Bird News

Sunday 29th December 2019

Bowling Green Marsh

Long Billed Dowitcher seen this morning  plus a Ruff ,  Curlew, Redshank and Lapwing. Usual ducks in large numbers including Pintail, Shoveler , Tufted, Pochard ,Wigeon and Teal. 

A large flock of Black Tailed Godwits approximately 750 flew into Marsh and a good number had rings visible. 

Flyover included a pair of Egyptian Geese and various sized flocks  of Brent Geese.

Early pm. The Eurasian Bittern , standing in its classic pose was seen to the left of the reed bed for about 5 minutes before it flew up and disappeared into the reed bed. 

Posted December 29th, 2019 at 8:33 pm by Cilla Ingram in Bird News

5 barrows Challacombe?

Along with a few other people looking for seo's, nothing much was seen other than stonechat m+f, buzzards pheasant, starlings and flocks of golden plover. 

Golden Plover.
Golden Plover.

Posted December 29th, 2019 at 7:03 pm by Philip worth in Bird News

Dartington

90+ Redwing in the fields with the sheep plus at least 4 Fieldfare seen.

Posted December 29th, 2019 at 6:56 pm by G and L Carr in Bird News

Passage House to the Exe

Passage House, Kingsteignton ~ 200 plus Black Headed Gull one carrying a yellow DARVIC type ring but unable to get any details, a smaller number of Herring Gull and a handful of Greater Black Backs, two Little Grebe, six Avocet (the first that I have seen at this location) a Common Sandpiper, nine Lapwing, two Little Egret, Oyster Catcher, four Mute Swan and a mishmash of domestic / hybrid geese including the Chinese and Greylag hybrids.

Cockwood steps ~ Dozens of Oyster Catcher in the roadside fields, Red Breasted Merganser, Great Crested Grebe, Shag, Cormorant, Brent and Canada Geese, Curlew, Turnstone, Redshank, Greater Black Back Gull, Nuthatch  and a fly past Sparrow hawk.

Starcross Golf Course ~ 69 Curlew, Redshank, Lapwing, 150 plus Brent Geese and a solitary Pied Wagtail.

On the flood meadow by the science lab, numerous Wigeon, a smaller number of Teal, three Little Egret, a Heron, Redshank and 20 plus Curlew.

Exminster Marsh ~ Egyptian Goose in with the Canada goose flock, a low flying Buzzard flushed a small flock of Starling and Redshank, moments later a female Peregrine flushed a flock of Curlew and then had a serious attempt at taking an evading bird but missed, a Cetti's Warbler calling well.

A379 Labrador Bay a flock of 10 plus Common Scoter, one great Northern Diver and a pair of Raven.

Posted December 29th, 2019 at 4:58 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

Plym Estuary & Saltram

On this afternoon's low tide: Great Northern Diver, 2 Goosanders (redheads), 52 Turnstones, Jack Snipe, Grey Wagtail & Chiffchaff.

Posted December 29th, 2019 at 4:44 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Exminster Marsh

Greeted by a Kestrel that flew over and hovered alongside the car park, during the next couple of hours also saw 3 other Raptors, a Buzzard, Peregrine Falcon that put up both Lapwing and Golden Plover, and a Marsh Harrier. Disturbed a Grey Heron on the footpath. Also observed, Little Egret, Curlew, hundreds of Canada Geese and Wigeon, plus Teal, Shelduck, Mallard. Several Cetti's Warblers were heard in the reeds along the path and by the screen hide.

Posted December 29th, 2019 at 3:26 pm by Stephen Huggins in Bird News

Charleton Marsh / Bay

In the bay 5 Great Crested Grebes, 2 Little Grebes, 23 Brent Geese, 26 Pintails and 40 Curlews. On the marsh 50 Teals, 30 Snipes, 3 Water Rails and 3 Cirl Buntings. Grey Wagtail and Firecrest in the sewage works.

Posted December 29th, 2019 at 1:01 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Haldon Forest

1 Male Hawfinch, 15 Crossbill(song and display flight) 1 Brambling seen on the Butterfly Walk this morning. 5G TV

Posted December 29th, 2019 at 12:11 pm by Roy Adams Hungarian Bird Tours in Bird News

Saturday 28th December 2019

Lower Tamar Lake

The Lower Lake this morning.

4 Ring-necked Duck 3m 1f, 19 Goosander 9m 10f, 4 Great Crested Grebe, 1 Little Grebe, 3 Willow Tit, 1 Grey Heron, 1 Gold Crest, 

Posted December 28th, 2019 at 8:29 pm by Rod Mudge in Bird News

Middle Soar/Soar Mill Valley/Southdown Farm

Extremely mild & little about so best was:  winter peak of 1220 Skylark, 40 Cirl Bunting, 11 Yellowhammer, 30 Magpie, 24 Canada Goose, 230 Jackdaw, Goldcrest & Grey Wagtail.

Posted December 28th, 2019 at 3:27 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

28-12-19 Radford Lake

Nothing much on the lake, 2 Kingfishers seen, plenty of Little Grebes and a Cormorant Species

Eds - this appears to be a sinensis Cormorant.

Posted December 28th, 2019 at 2:45 pm by Greg Bradbury in Bird News

Plympton

Up to three Blackcap in our garden over Christmas (2f and 1m)

Blackcap
Blackcap

Posted December 28th, 2019 at 1:35 pm by Chris E in Bird News

Starcross & Cockwood

At 1015 a Great White Egret flew SW over wet field at EA Lab. also 900+ Black-tailedGodwit, 20 Curlew, 30+ Redshank, 14 Greenshank, 20 Teal and 57 Wigeon there.

21 Cattle Egrets on northern slope at Cockwood amongst cattle again. 

Posted December 28th, 2019 at 12:56 pm by Steve Cox in Bird News

Christmas chiffchaff

Chiffchaff at Northam Burrows on Christmas Day GR SS 44707 31349 Sorry for the late posting.  I'm sure it will hang around a while!


Posted December 28th, 2019 at 11:42 am by JOHN WARD in Bird News

Plym Estuary

Only had time for a hours visit, quite productive with the following seen. Goosander 4 (3m), 2 Red-breasted Merganser (1m), Goldeneye (f), 9 Little Grebe, 68 Curlew, c210 Dunlin, 112 Redshank, 1 Greenshank and 2 Common Sandpiper.

Posted December 28th, 2019 at 11:21 am by Philip Martin Phillips in Bird News

Friday 27th December 2019

Combe Martin Breakwater

This afternon a Great Northern Diver was feeding in the shallows close off the breakwater. I scrambled round the rocks left of Newberry beach to get a better photo but the GND had moved further off towards Broadsands, where it looked like it might roost overnight. While there I scanned the Bay from Backrock to Camels eye and had c 3 Red-throated Divers.  

Posted December 27th, 2019 at 10:53 pm by Martin Thorne in Bird News

Exe Estuary cruise

This afternoon's Stuart Lines cruise experienced very large numbers of waders on the mudbanks in the upper part of the estuary. In particular, there were well over 1000 Black-tailed Godwits, maybe 750 Golden Plover, many hundreds of Lapwing, Dunlin, 300+ Avocets, with smaller numbers of Grey Plover, Ringed Plover, Knot and Sanderling. 3 Greenshank were at Powderham, where c20 Avocets were feeding. A Great Northern Diver flew out of the estuary past Warren Point. There were good numbers of Great Crested Grebes (20?), Shags (30?) and Brent Geese. About 80 Pintail were off Lympstone Barracks.

Posted December 27th, 2019 at 10:33 pm by Dave Smallshire in Bird News

Torbay kayak trip

1 skua in early morning gloom. I would suspect a Pomarine given the time of year but would welcome a diagnosis from the eds. (if poss, given v poor pic) Eds: yes an adult winter Pomarine Skua

45+ Common nDolphins in 4 pods from Brixham Breakwater to 2 miles off Berry Head

4 Harbour Porpoises off Berry Head

Pom/Arctic Skua
Pom/Arctic Skua

Common Dolphins
Common Dolphins

Posted December 27th, 2019 at 8:41 pm by Rupert Kirkwood in Bird News

Torbay

Marine Parade, Preston, a count of 40 Turnstone, good numbers of Oyster Catcher, 2 GBBG, Little Egret, a large number of Herring Gull on the rocks, two trawlers were working close inshore and they were attracting a considerable number of gulls, two large gull rafts off of Paignton included Greater Black Back, Lesser Black Back, Kittiwake and Common Gull as well as numerous Herring Gull.

Brixham, breakwater much as Richie Moores earlier post, a count of 19 Great Northern Diver, a single Guillemot, a distant pod of Porpoise along with good numbers of Gannet, Turnstone, Purple Sandpiper, Rock Pipit, Pied Wagtail, several Shag, Greater Black Back Gull, Kittiwake and one Seal.

 

Posted December 27th, 2019 at 7:34 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

Brixham harbour

Lots of great northern divers in the bay with a few really close in the harbour, at least 5 purple sandpipers with a few turnstones

Great Northern Diver
Great Northern Diver

Purple Sandpiper
Purple Sandpiper

Turnstone
Turnstone

Posted December 27th, 2019 at 5:07 pm by Richie Moore in Bird News

Hope's Nose

12.00-15.00

At least 10 Great Northern Divers, 2 Red-throated Divers (together in Hope Cove), Great Crested Grebe, 20 Common Scoters. Numerous Gannets, Guillemots (including an oiled individual) and Fulmars.  1 Razorbill in Hope Cove.  2 Stonechats, Rock Pipit, Raven and a Song Thrush.  A showy Firecrest with a Goldcrest in the separate clumps of bushes off the main track inland from the quarry.  3 Grey Seals and 2-3 Dolphin sp jumping in the far distance. 

Posted December 27th, 2019 at 4:10 pm by Paul Darlington in Bird News

Cockwood

Cattle moved, Egrets gone from Cockwood valley today. 

Posted December 27th, 2019 at 3:31 pm by Steve Cox in Bird News

Velator reserve

Best birds this morning were a couple of Water Rails, one squealing the other pop-pop-popping away in deep cover. Best non-bird sighting was the first Primrose this winter.

Posted December 27th, 2019 at 3:27 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Wrafton Pond

Late post - 26 Dec 2019

On the pond 1st W male Scaup & the female Goldeneye still present but no sign of the male yesterday lunchtime.


Posted December 27th, 2019 at 10:02 am by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Thursday 26th December 2019

Cockwood

21+ Cattle Egrets & 7 Little Egrets feeding with cattle on the northern slope of valley. 

Posted December 26th, 2019 at 9:00 pm by Steve Cox in Bird News

Plym Estuary & Saltram

3+ Jack Snipe, 2 Snipe, Stock Dove, 8 Wigeon (4 pairs), 6 Little Grebes, Sparrowhawk, Chiffchaff, Stonechat & 4 Roe deer.

Posted December 26th, 2019 at 3:59 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Wednesday 25th December 2019

ford park cemetery plymouth

Around 60 ringneck parakeet

Posted December 25th, 2019 at 8:16 pm by barry insull in Bird News

pictures of Black Redstart

Black redstart from Berryhead today

Black RedstartBlack redstart
Black Redstart

Posted December 25th, 2019 at 7:58 pm by Kay and Gary Deare in Bird News

Black Redstart

Female Black Redstart on the lighthouse buildings and opposite bushes today, early afternoon along with Dolphin pod.

Posted December 25th, 2019 at 6:15 pm by Kay and Gary Deare in Bird News

Velator

Christmas Chiffchaff in the reserve this morning, (and another in my garden later on). Also 3 Mallard (nest prospecting?) a Water Rail calling, otherwise quiet, but pleasant not to have a howling gale and rain.

Merry Christmas all!

Posted December 25th, 2019 at 4:06 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Dartmoor Walk

Surprise Christmas present of a ring-tail Hen Harrier today at Heckwood Tor above the Walkham Valley woods

Posted December 25th, 2019 at 2:34 pm by Phil and Jill Stevens in Bird News

Tuesday 24th December 2019

Brixham Breakwater

Brilliant close views of Great Northern Diver in the harbour at Brixham. Lots of Gannets really close in, great to see and a couple of purple sandpipers. Merry Christmas to everyone.

GannetGreat Northern DiverPurple Sandpiper
Gannet                           Great Northern Diver                                          Purple Sandpiper

Posted December 24th, 2019 at 4:21 pm by Richie Moore in Bird News

Lower Tamar Lake

A Goosander count this morning at 07:50

 27 Goosander 11m 16f

Merry Christmas

Posted December 24th, 2019 at 3:34 pm by Rod Mudge in Bird News

Plym Estuary & Saltram

A relatively brief visit on the low tide: 5 Jack Snipe, Snipe, 2 Stock Doves (my first here for some time), Great Spotted Woodpecker, Chiffchaff & 2 Shags.

Posted December 24th, 2019 at 3:17 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Ernesettle creek

This morning:

82 Snipe, 4 Avocet, 1 Common sandpiper, 1 Greenshank, Sparrowhawk, Kestrel, Buzzard.

Posted December 24th, 2019 at 2:34 pm by Alan Livsey in Bird News

Hawfinches

A visit to the traditional roost site at Longdown had a minimum of 9 birds leaving the forest between 0800hrs and 0900hrs. Unfortunately this is on a private estate but it shows birds are in the area. Also 5 Crossbill. 

Posted December 24th, 2019 at 11:36 am by Roy Adams Hungarian Bird Tours in Bird News

Slapton and South Milton

Now is the time to see crests, lots of goldcrests flitting about at Slapton and South Milton and the odd firecrest

Goldcrest
Goldcrest

Goldcrest
Goldcrest

Posted December 24th, 2019 at 6:22 am by Richie Moore in Bird News

Monday 23rd December 2019

River Plym and Saltram

I carried out my monthly WEBs survey this morning (Monday 23 December) and was delighted with the diversity of species found there. Here is the list: Gulls - BH, Common, GBB & LBB; Redshank, Curlew, Little Grebe, Cormorant, Grey Heron, Shelduck, Oystercatcher, Goosander, Red Breasted Merganser, GC Grebe, Dunlin, Mallard, Snipe, Greenshank, Little Egret, Common Sandpiper, Buzzard, Great Northern Diver. A very rewarding morning on a low to rising tide.

Posted December 23rd, 2019 at 7:34 pm by John Lloyd in Bird News

BGM this morning and Teignmouth Seafront

As previous post, Long Billed Dowitcher and Scaup showed well. Quick look at the point car park, Teignmouth seafront, five Great Northern Divers.

Posted December 23rd, 2019 at 7:27 pm by Simon Bates in Bird News

Wrafton Pond

1 First Winter male Scaup on the pond.


Posted December 23rd, 2019 at 6:27 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Bowling Green Marsh and Haldon

10.50-11.50

The Long-billed Dowitcher showed well from the hide.  Male and female Scaup also close by. 

Later, on the way home, at least 21 Crossbills together near an area of clearfell below the old raptor watchpoint at Haldon.  2 Sparrowhawks, including a male hunting at the feeders near the main car park! 

Posted December 23rd, 2019 at 4:20 pm by Paul Darlington in Bird News

Sharp Tor & Fir Wood - Soar

Black Redstart on the tor and in wood 2 Firecrest, 4 Goldcrest, Treecreeper, male Great Spotted Woodpecker, 6 Long-tailed Tit, 2 Jay & 4+ Bullfinch.

Posted December 23rd, 2019 at 3:06 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Ilfracombe

A nice surprise in Combe this morning while checking through the Gulls not one, not two but 3 Juv Iceland Gulls on the boating lake. The third Gull was very small like a diminutive Herring Gull so possibly a Iceland Herring Gull hybrid. Nice to get a photo as I missed an near adult Iceland Gull behind Lantern Hill last Sunday. Several Black Redstarts have recently arrived behind the Landmark as well. 

Juv Iceland Gull
Juv Iceland Gull

Eds: Fantastic! In your text - Iceland x Herring Gull is not a likely cross, not sure I can find reference to any hybrid Iceland Herring Gull - Glaucous cross regularly with Herring Gull but they would not be 'diminutive', so not sure what the bird might have been

Posted December 23rd, 2019 at 1:05 pm by Martin Thorne in Bird News

Ernesettle Creek

At low tide near the rail bridge were 5 Avocet & a Spotted Redshank.

Posted December 23rd, 2019 at 11:00 am by Martin Phillips in Bird News

South Milton

Lots of Chiffchaffs feeding on the flies at South Milton and a few Goldcrests

ChiffchaffChiffchaff
Chiffchaff

 

Posted December 23rd, 2019 at 8:32 am by Richie Moore in Bird News

Sunday 22nd December 2019

Dawlish Warren Snipe flock

Highlight of this afternoon's WeBS count for Starcross to Dawlish Warren was a large number of Snipe in the Spartina saltmarsh behind the Warren Gold Course. A very high tide pushed them to concentrate in less flooded areas. My best counts suggested 285, the most I've seen there since a similar number in December 1993. It was odd to see flocks of up to 50 flying around like 'proper' waders! As I left, c200 were crowded together in one small area on the estuary edge of the saltmarsh (see images).

 Snipe in D Warren saltmarsh Snipe in D Warren saltmarsh

Posted December 22nd, 2019 at 10:02 pm by Dave Smallshire in Bird News

Spotted Redshank Fremington Pill

Showing nicely in reasonable light on the incoming tide and distancing itself from the commoners today at Fremington Pill was the currently resident Spotted Redshank.  Also seen was the Glossy Ibis. A surprise was spotting the Kingfisher fly up to, and settle briefly,  on the overhead powerlines just up river from the iron bridge near the Pill mouth! 

Spotted RedshankKingfisher on powerlines
Spotted Redshank                                   Kingfisher on powerlines

Posted December 22nd, 2019 at 7:30 pm by Phil & Sue Naylor in Bird News

Bowling Green Marsh

11:04 - 12:35

Long-billed Dowitcher showed very well as did the Scaup; also present Curlew along with a good collection of duck (Pintail, Wigeon, Teal, Pochard, Shoveler, Shelduck, Mallard). Two buzzard in tree.

Posted December 22nd, 2019 at 4:44 pm by Paul Bray in Bird News

Exminster Marshes

All the usual suspects present in good numbers this morning, with today's bonus birds being two Egyptian Geese on the new scrape and three, possibly four, Bearded Tits at Topsham Lock, feeding close to the jetty.

Posted December 22nd, 2019 at 4:21 pm by James Camden in Bird News

Torbay

Peregrine falcon circling over the Torbay ring road near Marldon just after 08.15hrs this morning, over the town a flock of 60 plus feral pigeons seen circling low over the town, moments later another Peregrine came into view no doubt interested in the pigeons.

Off of Livermead three Mute Swan and a Heron on the shore line rocks.

Marine Parade, Preston, not less than 38 Turnstone, 12 Oyster Catcher, 2 GBBG, 35+ Black Headed Gull, 12 Great Crested Grebe, Little Egret, 2 distant Common Scoter flew in from the Torquay side and landed out on the sea, even further offshore plenty of Gannet activity and a couple of sightings of a single Porpoise.

Whilst there a gent came up with his phone on which was an image taken yesterday of an almost pure white Blackbird taken on the headland, no doubt the same leucistic bird that has been subject of previous posts.

Broadsands car parks, 2 Pied Wagtail, 8+ Cirl Bunting, male Yellow Hammer, numerous House Sparrow, Dunnock, Chaffinch, Robin, Sparrow hawk, 11 Long Tailed Tit.  The Sparrow hawk followed by a drone being flown in the carpark soon cleared all the bird life from the vicinity..

Off the coast 2 Great Northern Diver, 2 Great Crested Grebe (the 12 off of Marine Drive could be seen in the distance) 3 Common Gull, Little Egret, well out to sea lots of Gannet and Cormorant activity.

Just outside of Paignton from the A385 a hovering Kestrel.

  

  

Posted December 22nd, 2019 at 4:12 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

Slapton and South Huish

Lots of Gannets diving in at Slapton and a Kestrel hovering near the carpark at South Huish marsh

Kestrel  Gannet
Kestrel

Gannet

Posted December 22nd, 2019 at 7:21 am by Richie Moore in Bird News

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