General Birding

2019 Descriptions still outstanding

Many thanks to all observers that submitted their records for 2019. However there are still a number of records that require descriptions before they can appear in the Bird Report.

If you were fortunate enough to find (or see) any of these birds below please could you submit a description to the County Recorder Many thanks, stay safe.

Alpine Swift, Dawlish 11 Jun  Hooded Crow, Baggy Point 10 May
Barred Warbler, Thurlestone 30 Aug Long-tailed Skua, Dawlish Warren 11 Oct
Caspian Gull, Thurlestone, 08 Feb Purple Heron, Slapton Ley 07 May
Caspian Gull, Topsham 02 Aug Sabine's Gull, Thurlestone 14 Aug
Cory's Shearwater, Berry Head 19 Jul Serin (2), Harrowbeer 19 Apr
Glossy Ibis, Otter Est 11-13 Mar Tree Sparrow (2), Berry Head 20 Mar


Posted May 2nd at 3:27 pm by Kevin Rylands in General Birding

Coronavirus update - Daily exercise and Bird Hides

Please be aware that in line with Government guidelines on non-essential travel and social distancing, the Devon Birds hides at Beesands, Fernworthy and Roadford, in addition to hides elsewhere in the County including Bowling Green Marsh, Dawlish Warren and Seaton Wetlands are closed until further notice. Whilst some people may be fortunate enough to be within walking/cycling distance of these sites, others should not be making special journeys to visit these areas at this time. Thank you for your co-operation and stay safe.

Please follow NHS guidelines:

Posted April 16th at 12:04 pm by Mike Daniels in General Birding

Sightings page guidelines & rare breeding bird posting restrictions

We welcome contributions from Devon Birds members and the general public. Please follow the guidelines on this page if you have something to post on the blog, remembering to use the relevant subject.

Please post responsibly, never post details of rare breeding, or winter roosts of vulnerable, species. If you are unsure of what to - or not - to post, there are guidelines on the restrictions  here.

Please note:-

1. That Wood Warbler in probable breeding areas should also not now be published

2.  Posts which breach these guidelines may not be published at all. Editors do this job on a voluntary basis and cannot commit to editing out rare breeding bird information in posts which which include wider sightings. Please help us to avoid the need to delete or not admit posts. Thanks.

For help with ID email photos to

Posted January 8th at 9:12 pm by Pete Aley in General Birding


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 General Birding

Sunday 21st July 2019


Six or more Mediterranean Gulls on Instow near the cricket field

Mediterranean Gulls
Mediterranean Gulls

Posted July 21st, 2019 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, 2019 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, 2019 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, 2019 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, 2019 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, 2019 at 5:23 pm by Pete Aley in General Birding

Saturday 20th July 2019


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, 2019 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, 2019 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, 2019 at 5:25 pm by Alan Livsey in General Birding

Friday 19th July 2019


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, 2019 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, 2019 at 9:38 pm by Rob Jutsum in General Birding

mear valley exmouth

6 ringneck parakeet

Posted July 18th, 2019 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, 2019 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, 2019 at 9:26 am by Phil & Sue Naylor in General Birding

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, 2019 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, 2019 at 7:14 pm by Geoff Green in General Birding

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, 2019 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, 2019 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, 2019 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, 2019 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, 2019 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, 2019 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, 2019 at 3:15 pm by Spencer Dicks in General Birding

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