Devon Bird Sightings from 1st–7th July 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:

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


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

Sunday 7th July 2019

Mediterranean gull

Yes, it is a Mediterranean Gull. Large, bright red bill and black cap extending much further down nape than the brown cap of the Black-headed gull are diagnostic. Please give location. Which cricket pitch - where?

Posted July 7th, 2019 at 4:29 pm by Chris Proctor in Bird News

Mediterranean Gull - maybe?

Seen near the cricket field on Sunday morning 11.00 am ish.

This might be a Mediterranean Gull standing near a black headed gull. It appeared to be very different to the BHG standing next to it.

Mediterranean Gull?
Mediterranean Gull?

Posted July 7th, 2019 at 1:27 pm by Martin Bennett in Bird News

Saturday 6th July 2019

Taw Estuary - Pottington

1 Knot foraging amongst the BH Gulls am.

Posted July 6th, 2019 at 7:34 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Spotted Flycatcher?

Birds nesting in doorway opposite.

Not great images, but can anyone confirm it is a spotted flycatcher nest?


Eds: yes a Spotted Flycatcher - please use the above link to help with bird identifications

Posted July 6th, 2019 at 6:27 pm by Alun Sherwood in Bird News

Dragonflies at Stover

Highlights of a day 'dragonflying' at Stover were male Lesser Emperor and Red-veined Darter over the lake, plus both Large and Small Redeyes and many Black-tailed Skimmers. No sign of Scarce Chasers - checked the fringes from boat with Jon Avon - but one photographed away from water yesterday.

Posted July 6th, 2019 at 6:13 pm by Dave Smallshire in Bird News

06-07-19 Home Park White-letter hairstreaks

At least 4 showing very well around 2:30 pm

White-letter Hairstreak

White-letter Hairstreak

Posted July 6th, 2019 at 4:37 pm by Greg Bradbury in Other Wildlife


27 med gulls.17 adults,2 ss,7fs& probably my earliest juvenile.50 bhg's,2 whimbrel,39 curlew 1dunlin.07:40-08:15

Posted July 6th, 2019 at 4:02 pm by Robert Marshall in Bird News

Seaton Marshes

Whimbrel heard at 08:00 this morning with members of the Axe Estuary Ringing Group. 

Posted July 6th, 2019 at 2:50 pm by T. M. Mylett in Bird News


Kayak trip to Eddystone yesterday:

1 Balearic Shearwater,

100+ Manx Shearwater

1 Common Scoter

plus 15 Common Dolphin (10+4+1)

4 Harbour Porpoise (3+1)

Manx Shearwater and Common Scoter Common Dolphins Harbour Porpoise
Manx Shearwater and Common Scoter               Common Dolphins                                 Harbour Porpoise

Eds: All pelagic birders with the season upon us, please remember to send your seabird records in. Records such as these which are within 12 nautical miles of Devon do count for the county now. While posting on Devon Bird News is great the records do not automatically go into Devon Birds database.

Posted July 6th, 2019 at 7:23 am by Rupert Kirkwood in Bird News

Friday 5th July 2019

Taw Estuary

First flock of returning Redshank I have seen so far this summer on the north side of the Taw Estuary.

Posted July 5th, 2019 at 10:28 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News


First returning med gulls this evening.6,2 adults,2nd summer,3 FS.40 bhg's only one juv.20 curlew,14 dunlin.19:20-1945.

Posted July 5th, 2019 at 8:57 pm by Robert Marshall in Bird News

central park pre roost

around 100 ringneck parakeet inc 3 blue juvenile babies along with blue adult

Posted July 5th, 2019 at 7:45 pm by barry insull in Bird News

South Brent Redstarts

My first juvenile Redstarts of autumn, presumably dispersing away from natal areas - two near Aish Ridge this morning and one on Brent Hill on 3 July.

Posted July 5th, 2019 at 12:11 pm by Peter Reay in Bird News

Plym Estuary & Saltram

On this mornings high tide the following were seen.

Curlew 24, Redshank 62, Greenshank 2, Common Sandpiper 5, Little Egret 11, Grey Heron 4, Med Gull 1 1st sp, Shelduck 2 with 2 juv, Stock 9, Green Woodpecker 3, GSW 2, Peregrine and Whitethroat 2.

Posted July 5th, 2019 at 11:05 am by Martin Phillips in Bird News

Thursday 4th July 2019

Central Park, Plymouth

Still at least 2 White-letter Hairstreaks this afternoon, showing quite well.

White-letter Hairstreaks     White-letter Hairstreak
White-letter Hairstreaks


Posted July 4th, 2019 at 8:12 pm by Pete Aley in Other Wildlife


3 Black tailed Godwits on R.Caen early evening, 95 Black headed Gulls including 5 smart juv's & 75 Starling consisting of mainly juveniles on the Jetty.

Posted July 4th, 2019 at 7:27 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Clennon Valley Ponds, Goodrington

Small red-eyed damselflies frequent on the algal mats towards the bottom end of the lower lake, all males so far. Other species around the lakes included bluetailed damselfly, azure damselfly, black tailed skimmer, broad bodied chaser and emperor dragonfly. The top big lake was particularly good for the skimmers and chasers.

Small red-eyed damselfly, male            Black tailed skimmer, male
Small red-eyed damselfly, male                      Black tailed skimmer, male

Posted July 4th, 2019 at 6:38 pm by Chris Proctor in Other Wildlife

White-letter Hairstreak

I've nurtured suckering Elms in my Chudleigh garden for over 30 years and this afternoon my efforts were rewarded with brief sightings of a White-letter Hairstreak. The species has been assumed to breed in the Wych Elms in woodland over 500m away (Simon Mitchell showed me an egg there about 25 years ago!), but this is my first adult here. (Only known from a few locations elsewhere in Devon.) While I was waiting with camera for it to re-appear (which it didn't). 

  Common Buzzard


Posted July 4th, 2019 at 6:28 pm by Dave Smallshire in Bird News

Dawlish Warren

4th July 2019

The long-staying Slavonian Grebe and 15 Sandwich Tern were the highlights.

Also Buzzard, Kestrel, Little Egret, Curlew, Oystercatcher, Swallow, Whitethroat, Reed Warbler, Chiffchaff, Stonechat, Linnet and Reed Bunting.

Later at Flow Point were 18 Little Egret, 5 Grey Heron and 2 Shelduck with 3 young.

Posted July 4th, 2019 at 5:30 pm by C L North in Bird News

Exe estuary

Near Turf this morning at high tide 3 common sandpipers flew north, 4 common terns flew south and two family parties of shelduck (2 & 10 yn) stayed put.Single sandwich tern in channel.

Posted July 4th, 2019 at 5:24 pm by John Waldon in Bird News

Bolberry Down

First signs of autumn migration with 33 Sand Martins and 3 Swifts moving east along the cliffs.

Non-avian: 2 male Red-veined Darters, one giving cracking views perched up in the sun. Also Beautiful Demoiselle (new record for the Bolt Head to Bolt Tail site) and first Southern Hawker.

Posted July 4th, 2019 at 2:19 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Wednesday 3rd July 2019

Hope's Nose

3th July 2019


Short but sweet visit this evening 

5 Common Scoter were the highlights

40 Manx Shearwater

C.140 Guillemot were on ledges on Ore Stone

5 Gannet, numerous Cormorant and Shag

2 Oystercatcher 

A pod of c. 12 Common Dolphin were distant and seen heading towards Berry Head

Posted July 3rd, 2019 at 9:57 pm by C L North in Bird News

Plym Estuary & Saltram

My first Whitethroat of the year since Spring migrants, here; also Green Woodpecker, 23 Mandarin Ducks, Black-tailed Godwit (summer plumage), Greenshank, 46 Redshanks, 1st-s Mediterranean Gull & 4 Stock Doves.

Butterflies included a good count of 80+ Marbled Whites & my first Gatekeepers (3) of the year.

Posted July 3rd, 2019 at 7:03 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Bicton Common-East Devon

14 members of DB attended the East Devon Branch Nightjar evening yesterday.  A perfect evening with the bonus of a distant Hobby and Stonechats before we reached our viewing position.  First calls of Nightjar were heard at 9.45pm and a pair showed well during the time we were present.  The pair settled on the path and a tree giving great views.  It was agreed that calls and churring on the common were noticeably less than might be expected.  

Posted July 3rd, 2019 at 8:53 am by Jonathan Ruscoe in Bird News

Tuesday 2nd July 2019

Juvenile Black-headed gull

Juvenile and adult Black-headed gulls near Barnstaple long bridge.

Posted July 2nd, 2019 at 11:00 pm by Martin Bennett in Bird News


At Central Park Plymouth by the pitch and putt cafe 3 Whiteletter Hairstreaks.

Posted July 2nd, 2019 at 4:47 pm by Tucker in Other Wildlife


56 Shags on the Mew Stone inc.18+ freshly fledged juvs - a very good result. Looks like a bad year for breeding Cirl Buntings not helped by some very questionable management by NT. 

Non-avian; Red-veined Darter by Goat Rock. 

Posted July 2nd, 2019 at 3:16 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Plym Estuary & Saltram

Waders are starting to arrive back, on this mornings high tide the following were seen :

Redshank 52, Curlew 22, Greenshank 1, Black Tailed Godwit 1, Common Sandpiper 4, Med Gull 2, Little Egret 8 and 10 Stock Dove.

Posted July 2nd, 2019 at 11:24 am by Martin Phillips in Bird News

Monday 1st July 2019

Red kite-Plymouth

Red kite seen going over the Plessey roundabout at Roborough, Plymouth at about 15:30, Sunday.

Posted July 1st, 2019 at 10:19 pm by Andy Quest in Bird News

Plym Estuary

On this afternoons high tide the following were seen:

Grey Heron 8, Little Egret 8, Curlew 20, Black Tailed Godwit 1 sp and Med Gull 3 all 1st sp.

Posted July 1st, 2019 at 9:13 pm by Martin Phillips in Bird News

Berry Head

Two - three Red-veined Darters hunting and chasing each other over the wildflower meadow area immediately right - out of the main car park as if you were heading for the Northern Fort. Two regularly landed on the path and Yellow-rattle. A pod of 20-30 Common Dolphin were actively feeding due east of the main headland and plenty of Painted Lady Butterflies all around the headland. Very quiet for birds - even the Guillemots have all left the cliffs! 

 Red_v Darter BH 010719ML Red_v Darter BH 010719 ML  

Posted July 1st, 2019 at 8:06 pm by Mike Langman in Other Wildlife

Chambercombe Manor

Comma Butterfly at the Manor 1400. 4 Painted Lady, 4 Meadow Brown,1 Small White also present. 3 Large Red, 9 Azure Damselfly and 1 (unidentified) Dragonfly over the larger pond.

Posted July 1st, 2019 at 5:04 pm by Derek Stacey in Other Wildlife

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