Devon Bird Sightings from 22nd–30th September 2019

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: Recorder@devonbirds.org 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

Membership

If you follow our Blog but are not currently a member of Devon Birds please consider joining Devon Birds to help us 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 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 id@devonbirds.org.

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

Monday 30th September 2019

Exeter - Cockwood

A multi-stop outing this morning produced:

1. In Belle Isle Park a Ring-necked Parakeet;

2. At Matford ponds singles of Green Sandpiper and Snipe, three Stock Doves and good numbers of newly-returned Wigeon, Teal and Shoveler, encouraged no doubt by the rising water level;

3.  At Exminster Marshes/Turf a Sparrowhawk, a Wheatear, six Swallows, twenty newly-arrived Golden Plovers, and in the ditches, several Water Rails squealing and Cetti's Warblers singing, plus a few Song Thrushes which I assume are migrants;

4.  In the estuary the Slavonian Grebe, two Black Swans, three Sandwich Terns, and the usual 250+ Turnstones on the Starcross breakwater. 

In total, 70+ species on a Summer/Winter transition day.

Posted September 30th at 8:09 pm by James Camden in General Birding

Berry Head

Seawatch between 07.00 and 14.00 hours. Calmer conditions than expected produced 51 Balearic Shearwater, 7 Arctic Skua, 4 Great Skua, 10 Common Scoter, 6 Sandwich Tern and I Med. Gull. Perhaps the best birds were 5 Goosander heading south at 08.50 ! Largest flock of Kittiwake noted totalled 220. Noticeable steady flow of incoming Meadow Pipits between 09.45 up to 13.00 when the rain started.

Posted September 30th at 5:38 pm by Clive Mason in General Birding

Tarka trail

Male Migrant Hawker along the side of the trail between the Tarka Inn & Ashford Lime kiln yesterday aft.


Posted September 30th at 5:27 pm by Rob Jutsum in Other Wildlife

bowling green marsh

08.30 this morning the long billed dowitcher was showing well, as the morning went on, it went in with the godwits and redshanks making it harder to see, also there was a curlew sandpiper showing on the point.

Posted September 30th at 3:33 pm by roger jewell in General Birding

East Soar

Highlight this morning was the first  Ring Ouzel of the autumn, a male in Starehole Valley - plenty of berries here! Also Water Rail, 8 Stock Dove, 7 Swallow, 80 Skylark, 560 Meadow Pipit (200 West & rest grounded), 11 Chiffchaff, 5 Blackcap, 21 Magpie on Bolt Head & 350 Linnet.

Posted September 30th at 3:22 pm by Rob Macklin in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Sunday 29th September 2019

Woodbury Common

Quiet on the common this afternoon apart from numerous Wheatear on the paths. At least a dozen on the major path going downhill from the car park.

Posted September 29th at 11:06 pm by JOHN PHILLIPS in General Birding

Ilfracombe Capstone point

Mid morning/ early afternoon more Skuas passing, heading down channel, 8 Arctic and 2 Great Skuas by about 1 every 10 minutes. Best bird today looked like a Drake Long-tailed Duck. 

Posted September 29th at 8:26 pm by Martin Thorne in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Summer migrants flying south

A good number of Swallows and House Martins we’re flying along the coast near Teignmouth today and I returned home to find a Female Redstart flitting from bush to bush in the back garden! Keep an eye out for this one if you live in the Teignmouth area!

Posted September 29th at 7:11 pm by Nick D'Agorne in General Birding

Wheatear

Whatched a couple of Wheatear this afternoon on the rocks in front of the pitch and putt between Elberry and Broadsands. took pictures, when got home saw that one of them had something nasty sticking out of its chest. what does others think this is, it looks like some type of broken line.

Wheatear with line in chest
Wheatear with line in chest

Posted September 29th at 6:21 pm by Kay and Gary Deare in General Birding

Berryhead Seawatch

Berryhead 7am-13.30

Sabines Gull juvenile south at 11.18   Pom skua , Arctic skua 49, Bonxie 23 , Storm Petrel 2, Balearic shearwater 21, Manx 3, Com Scoter 6, Sandwich Tern 29

Posted September 29th at 4:33 pm by Dave Dawe in General Birding

BGM ~ Topsham ~ Long-billed Dowitcher & Curlew Sandpiper

The Long-billed Dowitcher and a Curlew Sandpiper showing well at RSPB Bowling Green Marsh this morning.

Good numbers of Curlew, Redshank, Black Tailed Godwit, 46 Greenshank, small number of Bar Tailed Godwit, Lapwing, Dunlin, Common Sandpiper, Ruff, Heron, a short passage of Swallows.

 

Posted September 29th at 10:14 am by Steve Hopper in General Birding

Saturday 28th September 2019

Ilfracombe Pier

Today and yesterday there's been some very good seabird activity in fairly close all heading down channel. Along with lots of Gannets and Kittiwakes I've never seen so many Arctic Skuas together, c12, I had four groups of 3 in view with more passing further out. About a third of them dark phase the rest light. Not a single Bonxie to be seen thou. 40+ Common Scoters in 3 flocks of about 15 passed west all at the same time as well. 

Posted September 28th at 10:10 pm by Martin Thorne in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Exmouth sparrowhawk

One-eyed sparrowhawk caught a house sparrow at mid-day in my tiny, walled back yard in centre of Exmouth. Late report for 26h Sept.

Posted September 28th at 6:26 pm by Margaret Mackintosh in General Birding

Slapton Ley / Start Bay

08:15-15:00

Thousands of seabirds distant across Start Bay on arrival, mostly Kittiwakes and Gannets. At least 7 Arctic Skuas among them. They had dispersed by mid morning. Highlights on the beach before the dog walkers were a first calendar year Little Gull, 12 Common Terns, 4 Sandwich Terns and 3 Mediterranean Gulls. On the ley itself at Torcross a surprising healthy late number of around 30 Sand Martins and a hard to see first calendar year male Scaup amongst the Tufted Ducks out from the tank. 2 Little Grebes in Stokeley Bay. Along the line 2 Wheatears and a flock of 80 Linnets. Early afternoon the Gannets and Kittiwakes starting coming back in the bay and a watch from the Memorial Car Park between 13:30-15:00 produced one Great Skua and 12 more Arctic Skuas heading south. Also one Harbour Porpoise around.

Posted September 28th at 5:47 pm by Perry Sanders in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

central park plymouth

100+ ringneck parakeet 730 am near barn park entrance 

Posted September 28th at 9:43 am by barry insull in General Birding

Friday 27th September 2019

Prawle

Sea watch from 8.15 to 11.15 am produced c175 Balearic Shearwaters, c30 Manx Shearwaters and one Sooty Shearwater, all west. Not much else. Pat Mayer reports an additional 85 Balearic in the hour before I arrived - in all, approaching a record day count for Prawle.

Posted September 27th at 2:52 pm by Andy Smith in General Birding

Topsham

The Long-billed Dowitcher was off the Goatwalk this morning at around 10.30, in with the Godwit & Redshank feeding flock. Earlier from the viewing platform was the Curlew Sandpiper. 1 Common Sandpiper at BGM. 

Posted September 27th at 1:43 pm by Nick Potter in General Birding

Thursday 26th September 2019

Bowling Green Marsh - Thursday 26th

In front of a packed hide, the Long-billed Dowitcher understandably stole the show, but also worthy of mention were an eclipse Garganey, a Ruff and a Curlew Sandpiper amidst the huge Black-tailed Godwit/Redshank flocks. Pintails now number 100+ and on the Exe a single Avocet.

Long-billed Dowitcher
Long-billed Dowitcher

Posted September 26th at 11:47 pm by Chris Marcol in General Birding

Start point, Beesands and Slapton

mid am at Start Point, hundreds of Meadow Pipits, a couple of Wheatears, over 100 Swallows and a Peregine plus during a short sea watch, hundreds of Gannets fishing offshore, 1 Bonxie, about 15 Balearic and a few Manx Shearwaters and one Sandwich Tern. At Beesands, late am, 55 Gadwall, c10 Sand Martins and another two Wheatears and at Slapton, early pm, a juv Hobby taking dragonflies in front of the Torcross hide, a few Common Terns offshore and a dark ad Arctic Skua close in off the memorial carpark harassing Kittiwakes. Finally, another Hobby low over the road a little inland of Strete.

Posted September 26th at 8:41 pm by Andy Smith in General Birding

Skern

After sneaking off to Davidstowe for the White-rumped Sandpiper, Andy Lansdell and I stopped off at the Skern as the tide came in. Glad we did:

c150 Oystercatchers. c30 Curlew, around 400 Ringed Plover, maybe 100 Dunlin, 3 Curlew Sandpiper, 3 Golden Plover, 3 Grey Plover, 2 Turnstone, a Sanderling, 3 Knot (one with a  damaged wing), 13 Pintail, 100+ Linnet, 6 Skylark, 3 Grey Heron, a Little Egret, a Bar-tailed Godwit, a Merlin and a Female Sparrowhawk, and best of all a Black Tern.

Posted September 26th at 6:58 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Arctic Skua off Dawlish Warren

Had some good views of an adult Arctic Skua pursuing a Black-headed Gull until it dropped its fish at 4pm today off Groyne 19 on Dawlish Warren. Also saw a flock of 6 Sandwich Tern and 22 Sanderlings, trying not to get their feet wet!

Arctic Skua searching for a victim
Arctic Skua searching for a victim

Arctic Skua chasing a Black-headed Gull with fish
Arctic Skua chasing a Black-headed Gull with fish

Sanderling flock at high tide
Sanderling flock at high tide

Posted September 26th at 6:07 pm by Nick D'Agorne in General Birding

Fremington Pill

A late morning walk along Fremington Pill on a low tide showed the glossy ibis is still present. Also loads of redshank and black-headed gulls, a dozen dunlin, 8 teal, several curlew, 2 little egrets, and 2 buzzards flew over.

Posted September 26th at 2:05 pm by Colin Dracott in General Birding

Wednesday 25th September 2019

Velator

3 Swallows over late morning. The river is full of run-off from the recently ploughed fields so not much chance of Kingfisher or Dipper at present, but a Grey Wagtail was there when I left. Sparrowhawk, Buzzard and Kestrel all close by or over the reserve.

Posted September 25th at 7:47 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Berrynarbor

'Scrumping apples here today !

         

Posted September 25th at 5:37 pm by Margaret Phillips in Other Wildlife

Yesterday at Prawle Point Tuesday 24th

A Firecrest and 2 Goldcrests in the reserve. Late seawatch saw 3 Arctic Skuas chasing Kittiwakes going east at 11amish.

Posted September 25th at 10:42 am by Tony Marchese in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Tuesday 24th September 2019

Slapton Sands

Good number of c 500 Great Black-backed Gulls around Slapton Sands yesterday. Managed to read a ring on one and it was ringed as a pulli at Plougoulm, Finistere in May 2014. Earlier this month it was on Alderney, Channel Islands. As there was another present with a similar type of ring I guess a lot of the gulls had arrived from the same area.

Posted September 24th at 5:49 pm by Perry Sanders in General Birding

Muddy waters

Lunchtime ;- Photo 1 - Where R.Caen & Knowle Water meet to flow out into the Caen Estuary showing silt in suspension after torrential downpours.

Photo 2 - Erosion of inside (Horsey side) of outer sea wall. Existing breach from Caen Estuary right hand side of photo.



Posted September 24th at 5:27 pm by Rob Jutsum in Other Wildlife

Berry Head

Seawatching 0700-0900hrs in reality the counting was up until 0830 then many of the seabirds started to mill around and linger so counting stopped: 24 Arctic Skua, 13 Great Skua, 1 Sooty Shearwater, 2 Balearic Shearwaters, 1 Common Tern, 3 Sandwich Terns, 650 Kittiwake, 1 Common Gull and 5 Harbour Porpoise.

Around the quarry and woods: 3 Firecrest, 6 Goldcrest, 7 Chiffchaff, 1 Blackcap and 7 Swallows over head. , 

Posted September 24th at 10:45 am by Mike Langman in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Monday 23rd September 2019

Berry Head

Seawatch 1525-1755Hrs: 43 Arctic Skua, 31 Great Skua, 2 Sooty Shearwater, 6 Balearic Shearwater, 1 Manx Shearwater, 1 Storm Petrel, 2 Arctic Tern, 2 Sandwich Tern, 4 Common Tern, 550 Gannet, 39 Auks,  3 Mediterranean Gull. 

In the quarry: 2 Wheatear, 4 Chiffchaff, 3 Blackcap. 

Posted September 23rd at 8:53 pm by Mike Langman in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Bowling Green Marsh

Good numbers of waders over the high tide. Highlights were 1 Ruff, 1 Common Sandpiper and 1 Avocet.

Posted September 23rd at 8:49 pm by Nick Potter in General Birding

Middle Soar

Arrived 0630 but no early vis mig though did have first Merlin of the autumn plus Wheatear, 10 Stock Dove, 150 Meadow Pipit & 440 Linnet.

Posted September 23rd at 4:51 pm by Rob Macklin in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Velator

A lone Swallow briefly over the reserve this morning, before I chickened out in front of the arriving rain.

Posted September 23rd at 3:47 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Slapton Ley

Had a walk down the line before the rain set in. Lots of Kittiwakes off Torcross attracting the attention of 2 Arctic and 2 Great Skuas. Shedloads of Gannets in the distance feeding on the Skerries. Otherwise fairly quiet. A few Chiffchaffs noticeable around Slapton Bridge, elsewhere Sandwich Tern, Sand Martin and a Wheatear.

Posted September 23rd at 10:59 am by Perry Sanders in General Birding

Sunday 22nd September 2019

Chambercombe caterpillars.

I used to rear caterpillars in my misspent youth - the symptoms described sound like a virus disease.

Posted September 22nd at 8:51 pm by Chris Proctor in Other Wildlife

Chambercombe caterpillars.

I believe these are the caterpillars of the buff tip moth (the one that imitates a birch twig ) .  It is the right time of year for their. larvae. I wonder if  the food plant they are using has been treated with insecticide / herbicide etc.,and causing their death.

Posted September 22nd at 6:51 pm by Alan K. Searle. in Other Wildlife

Further to post at 4.03pm from Derek Stacey

I think I discovered some similar characters to yours a couple of weeks back. Digging out my old copy of Chinery's field guide to the Insects of Britain (c.1976) made me think they were Buff-tip caterpillars (Phalera bucephalus). They were new to me, and my photos are from August 10th in Holcombe. Anyone else able to confirm? Thanks

Posted September 22nd at 5:41 pm by Barney Donnellan in Other Wildlife

Slapton Sands

Afternoon visit in the hope that overnight rain might have dropped-in some migrants but very quiet with most passerine migrants cleared out, just a single Blackcap! The sea more productive: 1 juv Little Gull off the monument, 3 Common Terns and 3 Arctic Skua going south.

Posted September 22nd at 4:29 pm by David Cope in General Birding

Chambercombe

On 17th September several of these caterpillars appeared briefly in my porch. One by one they writhed and died in a pool of orange liquid. The one photographed was found on the path a few minutes later and died in the same way just after the photo was taken. I have so far been unable to identify them. Perhaps someone else could?


Posted September 22nd at 4:03 pm by Derek Stacey in Other Wildlife

FPC 22-09-19

The only bird of interest showing was a couple of Ring-neck Parakeets 1 blue and 1 green, Great spotted woodpecker heard but not seen



Posted September 22nd at 12:24 pm by Greg Bradbury in General Birding

Blaxton Meadow, Plymouth

In amongst the Curlew this morning was a immature Common Tern. 

Posted September 22nd at 11:52 am by Martin Phillips in General Birding

Plym Estuary Sat 21st Sept

Two Bar-tailed Godwits with 33 Curlews on Blaxton Meadow, which also hosted 5 Greenshanks, 2 Common Sandpipers and a Teal; the latter being my 100th species on this patch this year. Also on the narrow river, Dipper & GreyWagtail & 3 Ringed Plovers at Blagdon's Meadow. 

Posted September 22nd at 10:36 am by Pete Aley in General Birding

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