General Birding

Missing Devon rarity records 2018

Unfortunately no descriptions have been submitted for the following records of ‘A’ species reported in 2018. This means, 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.

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

Chough Northam 17-18 July  

Corn Bunting Beer Head 25 August

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 Shearwater (2) Berry Head 20 September

Great White Egret (2) Bridge Marsh, Axe Estuary 13 January

Great White Egret Black Hole Marsh, Axe Estuary 22 August

Great White Egret Exminster Marshes 30 March

Great White Egret Exmouth 06 May

Great White Egret Stover 01 October

Honey-buzzard Dartmoor 21-22 May

Little Bunting Slapton 21 October

Montagu’s Harrier Dartmoor 19 Aug

Pectoral Sandpiper Upper Tamar Lake 13 August

Ring-necked Duck Lee Moor 14 October

Rose-coloured Starling Beesands 27-28 August

Serin South Hallsands 24 April

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


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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

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

Saturday 15th June 2019


On Dartmoor yesterday 14 June I saw a number of Siskins, a Nuthatch, male and female Chaffinch and usual Blue tits, Great tits and lots of Swallows.

Female SiskinMale Siskin
Female Siskin                                                   Male Siskin

Posted June 15th at 12:51 am by Martin Bennett in General Birding

Friday 14th June 2019

Bowling Green Marsh

The Spoonbill was still at BGM this lunchtime. Very little else.

Posted June 14th at 4:39 pm by Nick Potter in General Birding

Turf Lock

I have been keeping a eye on the pontoon where I know at least 3 Swallow nests are, 2 have fledged this morning, 1 set of 4 and another of 5. By the sound of the noisy chicks on the 3rd nest they wont be long to join the rest. The adults finding plenty of food along the canal bank. With the apparent Swallow numbers down this year, its great to see all these fledglings in one place.


Posted June 14th at 2:05 pm by simon Thurgood in General Birding

Wednesday 12th June 2019

Spotted Flycatcher on the Otter

Spotted Flycatcher this afternoon on the Otter, downstream from Ottery St Mary, among the newly planted trees. Lovely to see one again.

Posted June 12th at 8:58 pm by Martin Littlemore in General Birding

NT. Killerton Estate, East Devon

Took a walk around the hills behind Killerton House thinking it might be a good area for a future fieldtrip.  Found a Spotted Flycatcher in the grounds of Killerton Chapel.  Nuthatch and some woodpeckers (Green and Gt Spotted)elsewhere but generally very few birds for such a varied habitat.  After talking to NT staff I learnt that the entire estate including the extensive woodlands (The Clump, Park Wood Columjohn Wood, The Plains etc are not free access and that unless one is a NT member, you have to pay an admission fee, plus the car park at £2 for two hours (£4 all day).   During my childhood there was a heronry at The Clump but not for many years.

Posted June 12th at 5:37 pm by Jonathan Ruscoe in General Birding

Swallow - Wrafton Pond

Emailed ML with original photo & noted a crack in the upper mandible which suggests a fracture or breakage due to a possible collision.

I noted this morning that this bird was flying very slowly & while stalling, picking insects from the leaves of shrubs which suggests the growth impairs it's ability to feed in the usual manner so has had to adapt it's feeding behaviour to some extent to allow for this, though the poor bird is obviously struggling to survive.

Posted June 12th at 3:41 pm by Rob Jutsum in General Birding

Wrafton Pond, Taw Estuary

Stopped off at the pond to have a look on my way along the Tarka trail to  Barnstaple.  4 House Martins & 2 Swallows were foraging within a few metres of the boardwalk .One of the Swallows was so close to where I was standing I had to take a step back to avoid a possible collision.

This one Swallow alighted twice on the handrail at the side of the boardwalk only 2 metres away from where I was standing & rested for some time. My initial assessment was the bird was exhausted or unwell.

Looking at the photos when I got home I noticed it had an abnormal upper mandible. I have not been able to identify what it is. Is it a growth of some sort from an injury or a parasite that has attached itself to the bill?

Good to see at least one pair of Shelduck with 10 juveniles on the north side of the Taw estuary between Chivenor & Barnstaple, but could only find one pair.


Posted June 12th at 1:17 pm by Rob Jutsum in General Birding


Family of 5 nuthatches, and 2 Y Gr. Sp. Woodpeckers being fed in our Gribbleford garden 

Posted June 12th at 10:58 am by Sue Clark in General Birding

Pied? Female blackbird

Female pied blackbird cormelles court car park area in combemartin. Quite spectacular when she flew with her white wings. Phone camera shot 

Posted June 12th at 10:20 am by Philip worth in General Birding

Tuesday 11th June 2019

Dawlish, a positive note!

After being inspired by my good friend Mark Glanvile who runs “Bristol Swifts” these last couple years I’ve been trying to find out more about the Swifts, Swallows and House Martins that nest around Dawlish. On my evening walk around the center, unfortunately didn’t see the Alpine Swift seen earlier but did see 15 Common Swifts. They seem to be nesting in three main areas and have reclaimed a historic nesting site that wasn’t used last year, the number do seem to be up.

While Swallows do seemed to have disappeared this year, House Martins have found a new nesting site in the new housing development next to Sainsbury’s, 20+ birds here which is a positive sign, the odd thing here is they are only nesting on houses with the white render, don’t know why?

Posted June 11th at 8:09 pm by simon Thurgood in General Birding

Dawlish Alpine Swift

Alpine swift seen over the strand and Brunswick place Dawlish at 4pm with common swifts and house martins 

Posted June 11th at 4:58 pm by Graeme Davey in General Birding


A Red Kite appeared over Scadson Woods between heavy rain showers at 10.20 hours. Quickly joined by the local Herring Gull population it gained height and headed towards Paignton. First new garden tick for me in a long time !!!

Posted June 11th at 1:09 pm by Clive Mason in General Birding


Been off in  foreign parts for a few days (well, Cornwall!) Returned to the reserve yesterday to find what looked like a full set of feathers from an adult Wood Pigeon on the grass. Female Sparrowhawk of perhaps a passing Peregrine?

This morning a Kingfisher perched over the pond (the nearby river being too muddy).

Posted June 11th at 12:22 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Monday 10th June 2019


Just before the rains came this evening a sparrowhawk had his dinner in next doors garden - not so good for its prey, a probable sparrow

Posted June 10th at 10:10 pm by Colin Dracott in General Birding

River Otter, South Farm Road Bridge

Cuckoo heard calling briefly in late AM (11:00).

Posted June 10th at 8:21 pm by Toby Mylett in General Birding

East Devon


10th June 2019

Seaton Wetlands- 8 Little Egret, Grey Heron, 2 Cormorant, 3 Mute Swan, 55 Shelduck, 30 Mallard, Buzzard, Sparrowhawk, Kestrel, B-H Gull, Herring Gull, 1 LB-B Gull and GB-B Gull.

Eds: This post has been edited.  Please read the list of rare breeding and vulnerable Devon Birds that should not appear in sighting postings, normally the whole post is deleted.

Posted June 10th at 4:29 pm by C L North in General Birding


Two parakeets seen in Rockbeare 5.30 am.

Posted June 10th at 7:45 am by Maggie Heal in General Birding

Sunday 9th June 2019

Capstone Parade

All Wk I've been seeing this handsome brute Great Black Backed Gull and it's mate raiding Ilfracombes roofs of its Herring Gull eggs and chicks.  Manx Shearwaters now passing in good numbers most days. Over at Pottington ind estate among Lesser bb and Herring Gull nesting sites at least 2 pairs of Oystercatchers on nests. 

Great Black-backed GullWhitethroat
Great Black-backed Gull                               Whitethroat

Posted June 9th at 8:20 pm by Martin Thorne in General Birding


Yesterday 8/6 pair of yellowhammers male singing well, possible sighting of young y/hammer.2 white throat males singing,and one very large Raven flying overhead,small group of linnets one male Stonechat.

a good morning for the area.

Posted June 9th at 5:56 pm by Malcolm Seymour in General Birding

Chambercombe Manor

Highlight of a damp and disappointing couple of hours at CM. Seems to be a male Bullfinch passing food to a female rather than to a juvenile. Display perhaps?

Posted June 9th at 3:21 pm by Derek Stacey in General Birding


It was nice to see a Puffin with the Guillemots at Ore stone today

Posted June 9th at 2:38 pm by Robert Hughes in General Birding

09-06-19 Tawny Owl Chicks

2 Tawny Owl Chicks just sitting in a tree in Plymouth

Tawny Owl Chicks
Tawny Owl Chicks

Posted June 9th at 1:57 pm by Greg Bradbury in General Birding


The goosander on the Otter still has 13 of her ducklings.

Posted June 9th at 1:36 pm by Maggie Heal in General Birding

Bowling green Marsh

Spoonbill still eating voraciously

Posted June 9th at 12:22 pm by Ryan Knight in General Birding

Plym Estuary & Saltram

Seen before this mornings high tide were the following.

Med Gull 1st summer in amongst the 41 BHG, Oystercatcher 3, Curlew 1, Green Woodpecker 2, GSW 1, Stock Dove 4, Little Egret 3 & Grey Heron 2.

Posted June 9th at 11:23 am by Martin Phillips in General Birding

Saturday 8th June 2019

Bowling Green Marsh this morning

Spoonbill dropped in about 10:30 and fed voraciously for a couple of hours. Also three Greenshank and two adult Mediterranean Gulls - around 35 species in total

Posted June 8th at 1:20 pm by Simon Bates in General Birding

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