Devon Bird Sightings from 15th–21st July 2019

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: 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


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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

Sunday 21st July 2019


Six or more Mediterranean Gulls on Instow near the cricket field

Mediterranean Gulls
Mediterranean Gulls

Posted July 21st at 11:26 pm by Martin Bennett in General Birding

Dawlish Warren

Lovely afternoon at Dawlish Warren, 2 Roseate terns off the beach and lots of Sandwich terns, 10 Sanderling on the beach and 2 Dunlin.

Roseate Tern
Roseate Tern



Posted July 21st at 10:04 pm by Richie Moore in General Birding

Instow and Fremington trip

At Instow a common gull?  The Glossy Ibis in Fremington was up for a photo or two.

Glossy Ibis
Glossy Ibis

Common gull
Common gull

Posted July 21st at 9:06 pm by Martin Bennett in General Birding


From yesterday little ringed plover,31 med gulls,20 ads,2nd s,6fs,4juv's.20:15-2115

Posted July 21st at 7:30 pm by Robert Marshall in General Birding

Venford Reservoir area

Highlights included: Juv Cuckoo being fed by Meadow Pipit, Little Grebe family, Juv Redstart, 2 Great Crested Grebe, Redpoll, 4 juv Grey Herons, Cormorant, 7 Siskin, 3 Chiffchaff and a single Willow Warbler. Also 3 Golden Ringed Dragonflies.

Juv Cuckoo
Juv Cuckoo

Grey Heron
Grey Heron

Little Grebe family
Little Grebe family

Posted July 21st at 6:46 pm by Chris E in General Birding

Plym Estuary & Saltram

A few waders on this morning's high tide including: 3 Greenshanks, 4+ Common Sandpipers, 32 Curlews, 91 Redshanks, Dunlin (sum-plum) & Turnstone (sum-plum). The latter was on Blaxton Meadow, the first time I can remember seeing one here. Also: 1st-s Mediterranean Gull, 13 Little Egrets, 6 Stock Doves, 7 Mandarin Ducks, Shag & a Shelduck with 2 juvs.

Posted July 21st at 5:23 pm by Pete Aley in General Birding


Four adult Roseate Terns on Bull Hill early this morning before feeding together in the estuary. Thought likely to be at the Warren over high tide. Also 120+ Sandwich Tern and at least 4 Common Tern.

Posted July 21st at 8:49 am by Matt Knott in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Saturday 20th July 2019


Large Red Damselfly ovipositing in my fishpond today. 

Large Red Damselfly
Large Red Damselfly

Posted July 20th at 9:19 pm by Martin Thorne in Other Wildlife


I met a couple at Velator the other day who saw a Swallowtail in their garden in West Down within the last few days.

Posted July 20th at 8:32 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Swallowtail Yelland

Over the wildflower meadows on the waste site adjacent to the old power station at Yelland, this continental swallowtail was seen and photographed by my mother in law on Wednesday just gone. I was 15 minutes behind and did not see it. 

A one off migrant perhaps but a reminder of just how special this site is for wildflowers, inverts and wildlife full stop. Hope locals will do what they can to campaign against development here. 

Posted July 20th at 8:08 pm by TOM WILLIAMS in General Birding

Bowling Green Marsh

0910-1215 :-

200+ Black tailed Godwit, 160+ Curlew, 18 Whimbrel, 14 Little Egret, 150+ Redshank, 70+ Dunlin, 5 Shelduck, 1 Mediterranean gull, 1 Reed Warbler, 6 Greenshank from the viewing platform.

Posted July 20th at 5:25 pm by Alan Livsey in General Birding


Adult Roseate Tern on Bull Hill early this morning, viewed from Shelly Beach. Also 110+ Sandwich Tern, 4+ Common Tern and at least 6 Mediterranean Gulls. Missed an Osprey though.

Posted July 20th at 8:38 am by Matt Knott in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Friday 19th July 2019

Berry Head

Seawatch 09.00 - 15.00: 45 Balearic & 333 Manx Shearwaters, Arctic & 4 Common Terns (all ads), 2 Puffins, Bonxie, Tufted Duck & up to 64 Mediterranean Gulls (mainly juvs). Also at least a dozen Common Dolphins & 3 Harbour Porpoises.  

Posted July 19th at 5:33 pm by Pete Aley in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts


First signs of significant migration this morning at 9.00 on a falling tide. 8 Sanderling, 5 Ring Plover, 180 Dunlin, 76 Curlew, 1Whimbrel, 1Redshank, 16, Mediterranean Gull. Also 4 Little Tern through, and most surprising 2 Gannet 

Posted July 19th at 5:01 pm by Roger Doble in General Birding

Thursday 18th July 2019


1 Common Sandpiper on R.Caen late aft / early evening.

Posted July 18th at 9:38 pm by Rob Jutsum in General Birding

mear valley exmouth

6 ringneck parakeet

Posted July 18th at 4:54 pm by barry in General Birding

Wednesday 17th July 2019

Glossy Ibis

Glossy Ibis viewed from the Skern, at 08:05 yesterday 16th July.

it flew off towards Crow Point/Instow.

Posted July 17th at 10:20 pm by Roger Walter in General Birding

Fledgling Northern Wheatear X 7 at The Skern, Appledore

All along the boulders lining the drop off from the tip road were what appeared to be a brood of 4 and a further brood of 3 fledgling Northern Wheatear. Also saw an adult female.

Posted July 17th at 9:26 am by Phil & Sue Naylor in General Birding

Mediterranean Gull & Summer plumage Knot at The Skern

As the tide dropped from the full in the Skern, Appledore, a roosting group of BH Gulls concealed at least three Mediterranian Gulls along with a surprising summer plumage Knot 

Posted July 17th at 9:19 am by Phil & Sue Naylor in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Tuesday 16th July 2019

Dartmoor Shaugh Lake Quarry

Lovely afternoon walking around the quarry (not trespassing as i work there). Lots of Wheatear, Sky Larks, Meadow Pipits, Sand Martins, Swallows, Pied Wagtails, Goldfinches, Tufted Ducks, Little Grebes and a pair of Reed Buntings to name a few.

Sand Martin
Sand Martin



Posted July 16th at 8:16 pm by Duncan Leitch in General Birding


Eleven members enjoyed the sunny weather walking to and round the quarry to the north of Haytor rocks.   Good views of male Yellowhammer, juvenile Wheatear, several Chiffchaff (possibly some were Willow Warblers) and many Stonechat.  Blackcap in the quarry with plenty of Swallows flying round including some juveniles.   We moved to Blackslade Water and located a Marsh Tit along with Stonechat, Goldfinch, Swallows and Chiff / Willow W..  Species count: 24.  

Posted July 16th at 7:14 pm by Geoff Green in General Birding

Occombe Farm Reserve, Paignton this afternoon

5 purple hairstreaks in the big oak on the woodland edge at the bottom right corner of the orchard. Also along the bottom edge of the orchard, small and large skipper, large and green-veined white, peacock, red admiral, silver washed firtillary, meadow brown, ringlet, gatekeeper, speckled wood (most of these on the flowering bramble beside the oak). Comma further upslope by the pond as we left.

Purple hairstreak
Purple hairstreak

Silver-washed fritillary
Silver-washed fritillary

Posted July 16th at 6:24 pm by Chris Proctor in Other Wildlife

Plym Estuary & Saltram

A visit on this afternoon's high tide. Not much to add to Martin's post, but the Coot was just as much of a surprise to me (I hadn't seen his post before my visit)! This is a rarity here, and as far as I can remember, the first one I've seen on the patch, outside very cold conditions. 

Also 2 Mediterranean Gulls (ad-s & 1st-s), 3 Mandarin Ducks and the Little Egrets included a juvenile.

Posted July 16th at 4:41 pm by Pete Aley in General Birding

Velator reserve

An interesting morning ringing: dominated by a steady supply of Blackcaps. With lots of birds fledging most of those ringed were juveniles. That is except Blackcaps: of the twenty I ringed 7 were adults. Surely they can't all be breeding in the reserve - I've already ringed a good number of adults, so most of these are already migrating(?) Of note were all the male Blackcaps - including a retrap - seemed to have a brood patch. Also:

3 juv Cetti's Warblers

5 juv Robins

1 juv Reed Warbler (and an adult)

1 juv Greenfinch

1 juv Blackbird

1 juv Song Thrush

2 juv Goldcrest

3 juv Wrens

2 juv Chiffchaffs


Posted July 16th at 12:13 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Plym Estuary & Saltram

On this mornings high tide the following were seen:

Curlew 35, Redshank 91 on the meadow, Greenshank 3, Common Sandpiper 5, Little Egret 13, Green Woodpecker 3, GSW 3, Stock Dove 9, Whitethroat 1 and the surprise of the morning was a Coot on the river by Longbridge.

Posted July 16th at 10:29 am by Martin Phillips in General Birding

Plym Estuary & Saltram Monday 16th July

On the high tide: 3 Mediterranean Gulls (ad-s & 2 1st-s), Greenshank, 68 Redshanks, 34 Curlews & 11 Little Egrets. Also 5 Stock Doves, Green Woodpecker, juv Goldcrest & 16 Mandarin Ducks.

Plenty of butterflies including double figures of Small Skipper, Marbled White & Gatekeeper & a single Large Skipper.

Posted July 16th at 9:16 am by Pete Aley in General Birding

Monday 15th July 2019

Nightjars at Stover

Churring from 21.36 for one minute - nothing thereafter. Two birds, male & female, constantly in the air/perched in trees from 21.45 - 22. 10, with a third fly-over bird (female?) at 22.10. Best viewed over new planting/tree tubes - by the Nightjar notice-board!  

Posted July 15th at 10:48 pm by John Walton in General Birding

Taw Estuary, R.Caen

Flock of Redshank at low tide on the north side of the Taw Estuary & plenty of BH Gulls & 3 Meds amongst them.

This delightful Blue-tailed Damselfly alighted on my bicycle lock cable by the Toll House.

On R.Caen 19 Dunlin still in sumplum, 1 juv Greenshank,142 BH Gulls inc 5 juv's , 1 adult Med Gull & 2 Little Egrets.

Posted July 15th at 5:40 pm by Rob Jutsum in General Birding

Exton Station

Osprey sat on post around 1:30pm. More details please visit

Posted July 15th at 3:15 pm by Spencer Dicks in General Birding

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