Devon Bird Sightings: Bird News from 1st–7th December 2021

Request 2021 records requiring further information

If you were fortunate enough to see any of the birds below please can you submit a description to the County Recorder Recorder@DevonBirds.org to ensure they are included in the 2021 Devon Bird Report.

Black Kite

Shute

07 Jun

Honey-Buzzard

Soar

09 Oct

Caspian Gull

Exmouth

01 Dec

Honey-Buzzard

Thurlestone

13 Oct

Chough

Noss Mayo

09 Feb

Little Bunting

Huxton Cross

18 Oct

Chough

Chudleigh Knighton

24 Sep

Long-tailed Skua

Thurlestone

12 May

Common Rosefinch

Lundy

10 Jun

Ortolan Bunting

Lundy

17 Jun

Corn Bunting [2]

Lundy

22 Jun

Pectoral Sandpiper

Bowling Green

27 Oct

Cory's Shearwater

Lundy

07 Sep

Purple Heron

Slapton Ley

17 Apr

Glossy Ibis

Staverton

21 Dec

RC Starling

Lundy

01 Jul

Glossy Ibis

Otter Estuary

28 Dec

RC Starling

South Huish

09 Sep

Golden Oriole

Combe Valley

09 Jun

Ruddy Duck

Exe Estuary

04 Apr

Nightingale

Hallsands

26 May

Serin

Haldon

21 Aug

Nightingale

Wistlandpound

30 May

Tree Sparrow

Ilfracombe

22 Jan

Hooded Crow

Clovelly

03 Jun

Tree Sparrow

Haldon

14 Nov

Posted June 30th at 11:34 pm by Kevin Rylands in Bird News

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Posted October 10th, 2016 at 9:14 am in Bird News

Tuesday 7th December 2021

Shoalstone, Brixham

Seawatching 14:00-16:30: on arrival a Pomarine Skua out in Tor Bay then picked up a 2nd towards Broadsands, a further three came in out of Lyme Bay (15:55-16:30), presumably to roost, making 5 ( a good December total!). Divers picked up with 9 Great Northern and Black-throated on the sea (all E of breakwater - so divers building up in Tor Bay).

Posted December 7th, 2021 at 8:12 pm by Mark Darlaston in Bird News

Saltram Park

The returning Red-crested Pochard female, has now relocated from Portworthy, via Blaxton Meadow, to the duck pond at Saltram House. The drake Teal also still there.

Posted December 7th, 2021 at 7:02 pm by Chris Marcol in Bird News

Torbay

Shoalstone Shelter Brixham am seawatch: 1 Sooty Shearwater, 1 Avocet (sat on sea with Guillemots!), hundreds of Kittiwakes and Auks.

Broadsands pm: 1 Pomarine Skua, 1 Mediterranean Gull, 7 Great Northern Divers, 1 Red-throated Diver (all west of Brixham Breakwater)

Posted December 7th, 2021 at 6:53 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Waxwings in Danes Wood, Killerton December 7 th 3.20 pm

At least 12 Waxwing in Danes Woof

Posted December 7th, 2021 at 4:34 pm by Rev Dr David Harley in Bird News

Monday 6th December 2021

Exminster - Starcross

On Exminster Marsh were a Marsh Harrier, a Peregrine on a pylon, and 15+Common Gulls, the most so far this winter, plus the usual ducks. For the first time, tried to count the Canada Geese. Gave up at 800+. Surely time for them to be reclassified as a "pest" species?

Between Turf and Powderham were 3-400 Avocets,  5 Knot and 20+ Pintail. Off the Kenn outfall were 15+ Barwits, a species which seems year by year to be moving up the estuary.

Inland from Starcross, a R-l Partridge was calling from the newly-flowering rape, and the cattle/egret/herd/flock was distantly visible on the S side of the Cockwood-Mamhead road.

Off Starcross Station, 30+ Turnstones were feeding in the weed along the water pipe.

Posted December 6th, 2021 at 10:54 pm by James Camden in Bird News

West Hoe and Crownhill Down

West Hoe: Purple Sandpiper with six Turnstone at lunch below Wet Wok on rocks. Also Grey Wagtail.

Crownhill Down: No sign of the female Goldeneye. 14 Golden Plover and 36 Redwing. Gull roost on the huge Tungsten West Pit at the top of the down - 750+ Herring Gull, 28+ Common Gull and 12+ GBB Gull. I left before dusk, more coming in.

Turnstone
Turnstone

Posted December 6th, 2021 at 5:26 pm by Chris E in Bird News

On going Lower Otter Restoration Project

For info. Still plenty going on at the Lower Otter Restoration Project my first visit with Rupert Ormerod for sometime. New Drainage channels muddy Scrapes and general wetland areas above White Bridge which is pulling birds into this new habitat, This will continue to change over time. This morning Snipe Wildfowl Kingfisher Grey Heron Little Egret Curlew and a surprise Green Sandpiper all in the newish wetland. No parking at White Bridge but you can walk from Otterton or Lime Kiln Carpark. Plenty to see on the old scrapes and Estuary around Lime Kilns Carpark. Can only get better????

3 of 20 Snipe seen
3 of 20 Snipe seen
Dipper on the River Otter
Dipper on the River Otter

Posted December 6th, 2021 at 5:14 pm by Derek Carter in Bird News

Galmpton - Red Legged Partridges

Last evening at dusk, at the top of Port Hill,, just on the fringe of Galmpton, a wonderful sight of a least 14 R.L. Partridges, wandering in the road, I have seen odd ones here before, but this was a lovely sight. 

Posted December 6th, 2021 at 4:13 pm by Trevor Leaman in Bird News

Sunday 5th December 2021

Fremington to Yelland

Fremington pill were two Gloss Ibis, three Greenshanks, one Spotted Redshank and a few Black tailed Godwits and Redshanks.  Around the quay area were a number of Oystercatchers and Redshanks, a single Heron, Greenshank and Black tailed Godwit.  Further on towards Yelland, on the river bank  were five or six Lapwings, one female Goosander, a Grey Plover and a few Curlew and on the pond were lots of Shovelers (M&F) and a Gadwall.  At Yelland was the highlight of the day, a close-up view of the Marsh Harrier. 

Black tailed Godwit
Black tailed Godwit
Greenshank
Greenshank

Posted December 5th, 2021 at 11:27 pm by Martin Bennett in Bird News

Dartmoor Goldeneyes

On Cholwichtown china clay works lagoon, near Lee Moor, a female Goldeneye and three Tufted Ducks. This is a different bird to the one seen by Chris E this morning on Crownhill Down. Too distant to photograph.

Posted December 5th, 2021 at 10:39 pm by Chris Marcol in Bird News

Crownhill Down

Around a dozen Golden Plover seen on the Down, they landed briefly then flew off north. Otherwise very little about

Golden Plover
Golden Plover

Posted December 5th, 2021 at 10:28 pm by Bob Barrow in Bird News

Clennon Valley Lakes

The yellow-browed warbler and at least 1 Siberian chiffchaff seen again today at 1230 at the back of the third lake nearest the woodland. Also water rail, kingfisher and peregrine. 

Posted December 5th, 2021 at 10:16 pm by Ian Loyd in Bird News

Saltram

Early morning walk from Plymouth road bridge to Blaxton Meadow. On river: Common Sandpiper 1, Dabchicks 3, Goosanders 6 (3 males ) Greenshank 1, Redshank 2, Curlew 1, Oystercatchers 10 and Mallards. Blaxton Meadow: Heron 1, Shelduck 7, Mallards 20+, Wigeon 17.

Cormorant and Goosander male
Cormorant and Goosander male
Distant Goosanders, 3 males, 2 females
Distant Goosanders, 3 males, 2 females

Posted December 5th, 2021 at 10:08 pm by Bob Barrow in Bird News

Slapton Ley and Beesands

2 female Lesser Scaup, 1 male Ring Necked Duck, 1 juv Brent goose, 1 Black Swan at Beesands. 1 Firecreast & 2 Chiff Chaff opposite ringing hut at Slapton Ley, & Black Redstart at memorial car park. 1 Purple Sandpiper on Brixham breakwater. 

Posted December 5th, 2021 at 7:57 pm by Richard Stansfield in Bird News

Meeth Quarry NR

On the lake in front of the hide 8 Goosander. 3 males and 5 females. 3 Gadwell. 10+ Tufted Ducks.  3 pairs of Great Crested Grebes. Little Grebe. Pochard. Teal. Numerous Coots. A pair of Kestrels.

Posted December 5th, 2021 at 5:28 pm by Kevin Wigley in Bird News

2 Distant divers off Teignmouth seafront

Probably red throats but even through scope couldn’t be 100%

Posted December 5th, 2021 at 3:42 pm by Adam Davison in Bird News

West Charleton Marsh

Male Marsh Harrier 13:50-14:00, then drifted high east probably to Slapton Ley.

Posted December 5th, 2021 at 3:35 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Efford Marsh, Plymouth

Kingfisher, Marsh Tit, Grey Wagtail & Great Spotted Woodpecker, this morning.

Posted December 5th, 2021 at 2:30 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Velator and Braunton Marsh

Spent much of my time in the last week since Storm Arwen clearing a huge Cupressus that blew over. Yesterday my son helped with the chainsaw and we cut up a good pile of logs which I shifted to the storage area today. During my walks around I saw at least 2 Jays, a juvenile female Sparrowhawk, with prey, a Song Thrush, a male GSW, heard only one water Rail today (there have been up to 6 squeaking sometimes). Star bird today was Chiffchaff - saw at least 4 and probably 2 of them looked pale and grey enough to be Siberian types. Yesterday's bird of the day was a very smart, bright Grey Wagtail perched on a branch I installed for the KIngfishers to fish from.

Late morning took a ride out along the Marsh Road and saw 1 Whooper Swan, but many of the other Swans were in the next field back and I couldn't be sure of the i.d.

Posted December 5th, 2021 at 2:16 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Crownhill Down, Dartmoor

Goldeneye (f) still on huge pit at top of down. Last seen at 0815 - favouring water around near shore so probably still there, but out of view. Three Golden Plover over.

Goldeneye record shot from Thurs
Goldeneye record shot from Thurs

Posted December 5th, 2021 at 9:00 am by Chris E in Bird News

Lower Tamar Lake

Late for yesterday 4th.

Lower Tamar Lake

15 Goosander 5m 10f, 2 Great Crested Grebe, 2 Cormorant, 1f Woodpecker, 2 Nuthatch, 1m Tufted Duck, 2 Mute Swan, 1 Grey Heron.

Posted December 5th, 2021 at 8:49 am by Rod Mudge in Bird News

Saturday 4th December 2021

Ideford Common

Female Brambling at Ideford Common this morning behind the feed station in the car park.

Posted December 4th, 2021 at 9:42 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

Plymouth Bits & Pieces

A Common Sandpiper on the Plym near STW outfall. At Tinside Pool on The Hoe a single Purple Sandpiper and eight Turnstones. The Red-crested Pochard that was at Portworthy yesterday has relocated to Blaxton Meadow, Saltram.

Posted December 4th, 2021 at 7:02 pm by Chris Marcol in Bird News

Torbay

The morning started with an Avocet (very rare bird in Torbay)on the sea at Broadsands also 2 Great Crested Grebes, 2 Great Northern Divers and 2 Red-throated Divers.

In the afternoon at Clennon Lakes: 1 Yellow-browed Warbler, 3 Siberian Chiffchaffs and at least 5 collybita Chiffchaffs, also Cetti's Warbler, 3 Water Rail a Wigeon, 2 Gadwall.

  Sibe Chiffchaff Clennon Lakes 4th Dec 2021 ML  Yellow-browed Warbler Clennon Lakes 4th Dec 2021 ML

                  Siberian Chiffchaff                                              Yellow-browed Warbler

Posted December 4th, 2021 at 4:01 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Wrafton Pond

10 Gadwall & 3 Snipe on the pond am.


Posted December 4th, 2021 at 3:59 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Beesands Ley

The two Lesser Scaups still present this morning, also the Ring-necked Duck. 4 Cattle Egrets on the Island first thing and surprisingly a few hundred roosting starlings came out. Also 2 Pochards and poor, into the light views of a possible first calander year Greater Scaup tight to reeds south east corner

Posted December 4th, 2021 at 12:39 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Plymouth Hoe

A Swallow over this morning.

Posted December 4th, 2021 at 12:13 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Friday 3rd December 2021

Braunton Marshes

Cycled to Braunton Marshes & was delighted to see a flock of 9 Whooper Swans visible from the road through a pair of bins strutting across the field with 2 Juveniles > 1st Winter birds..

The single Whooper which spent last winter on Braunton Marshes & associated with the Mute Swans was again with the Mute Swans seperate from the flock of 9 Whoopers. When this one was a juvenile it bonded with the Mute Swans & continues to do so.

We are very lucky in N.Devon this winter to have 10 Whooper Swans on Braunton Marshes.



Posted December 3rd, 2021 at 5:23 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Westward Ho!

3 Purple Sandpipers on rocks just east of Nassau Court at 3.50

Posted December 3rd, 2021 at 4:29 pm by Roger Doble in Bird News

Berry Head

Missed the main event the Desert Wheatear by about ten minutes but the supporting cast was quite good. Firecrest behind Berry Head Farm, two Black Redstarts on the quarry road and from the sea watching point a Pomarine Skua on a very calm sea which later flew towards the bay, four Common Scoter south and three Merganser north.

Posted December 3rd, 2021 at 4:08 pm by Clive Mason in Bird News

Lower Tamar Lake

This morning at the Lake,

2 Willow Tit, 1 Marsh Tit, 8 Goosander 3m 5f, 1 Song Thrush, 3 Coot, 2 Mute Swan, 1 Grey Heron, 2 Jay, 2 Great Crested Grebe.

Posted December 3rd, 2021 at 12:52 pm by Rod Mudge in Bird News

Cholwichtown Pit, Dartmoor

Goldeneye (f) on pit this morning. Also 2 Little Grebe and five Tufteds. View from here: https://w3w.co/playful.reclining.applied 

Posted December 3rd, 2021 at 9:35 am by Chris E in Bird News

Thursday 2nd December 2021

Lynton

This is the image of the Fieldfare that failed to load on my previous post.

Fieldfare
Fieldfare

Posted December 2nd, 2021 at 11:12 pm by Martin Bennett in Bird News

Lynton

Group of 15-20 fieldfares near Lynton. They seemed a little bit flighty or maybe camera shy although I did manage to get a couple of shots.

Fieldfare
Fieldfare

Posted December 2nd, 2021 at 9:57 pm by Martin Bennett in Bird News

Isley - Barnstaple

At lunchtime on Isley, a single Spoonbill was sleeping out the low tide with a handful of Ringed and Grey Plovers and a Greenshank for company.

In Fremington Creek, a Glossy Ibis and a Spotted Redshank were feeding, the latter running through the water with its bill open, sweeping sideways just as Spoonbills do, and, unlike the other "shanks", hoping to encounter prey rather than looking for it.

Downstream from the bypass bridge at Barnstaple were 2f and 2m Goosanders, and a Sparrowhawk spooking the finches.

Unusually, no Golden Plovers today.

Posted December 2nd, 2021 at 9:27 pm by James Camden in Bird News

Escot Park Field Trip

The Escot Park Field Trip details were posted previously by Jonathan Ruscoe but here are a couple of pictures of the Golden Plover seen on the distant farmland. More pictures of the trip on the gallery. 

Golden Plover
Golden Plover
Golden Plover
Golden Plover

Posted December 2nd, 2021 at 8:05 pm by John Reeves in Bird News

Plym Estuary & Saltram

Despite a big tide this afternoon, numbers of waders were generally down on recent days, but sightings included: 8 Goosanders (3 drakes), 18 Mandarin Ducks, 23 Wigeon, 2+ Snipe, Sparrowhawk, Grey Wagtail, Chiffchaff & 7 Roe Deer. 

Posted December 2nd, 2021 at 7:29 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Berry Head

A fine male Desert Wheatear was discovered on the top of the headland near to the lighthouse today - it moved into the quarry later. Perhaps the Start Point bird - but probably no way of proving it.

  Desert Wheatear male Berry Head 2 Dec 2021 ML  Desert Wheatear male Berry Head 2 Dec 2021 ML

Posted December 2nd, 2021 at 6:17 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Thursday 2.12.2021 Wembury Point

10.am on the mewstone  10 Fulmar. To the left of slipway 1 common Sandpiper. No sign of the water pipit. carol bartlett, Jenny Stidwell

Posted December 2nd, 2021 at 5:07 pm by Carol Bartlett in Bird News

Soar

Very encouraging numbers for the target species:  74 Cirl Bunting, 136 Yellowhammer & 760 Skylark. Also: 100 Golden Plover, 3 Kestrel, 11 Teal, Snipe, 130 Woodpigeon, 430 Starling, 51 Meadow Pipit, 17 Song Thrush, Chiffchaff (rare here in winter), 35 Goldfinch & 30 Linnet.  

Posted December 2nd, 2021 at 4:03 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Exe Estuary cruise

Fantastic cruise today in beautiful conditions - possibly the best Stuart Line cruise I've ever done. The stars were 2 Black-necked Grebes, which have relocated from Exmouth to Cockwood, but also good views of the Spotted Redshank at Topsham. Other highlights were c20 G C Grebes, c20 Shags, c15 Cattle Egrets (with cattle above Cockwood), very large numbers of Brent Geese (including at least 1 Pale-bellied) and Wigeon, c25 Pintail, very few (<10) Mergansers, a Marsh Harrier at Turf, 450+ Avocets, several hundred Golden Plover, a few dozen Knot with a large flock of both godwits at Topsham, c10 Greenshank, 4 Sanderling and Kingfishers at 3 locations. Also 4 Grey Seals, including what appeared to be a 'courting couple' off Bull Hill!

Black-necked Grebes
Black-necked Grebes
Spotted Redshank
Spotted Redshank

Posted December 2nd, 2021 at 3:56 pm by Dave Smallshire in Bird News

Crownhill Down & Portworthy

No sign of Goldeneye up to midday but Snipe & Golden Plover on the Down. Red-crested Pochard female back on Portworthy mica dam now for its 13th year at least.

An unusual visitor on Saltram duck pond yesterday was a drake Teal.

Posted December 2nd, 2021 at 2:59 pm by Chris Marcol in Bird News

Escot Park, East Devon.

The last field walk of the year for East Devon Branch with 16 members of DB attending.  Count of 33 species for the morning.  Main interest provided at the Millenium Orchard with expected Fieldfares and on the hillside north where Lapwing numbers (c100) continue.  Added to these were similar numbers of Golden Plover and accompanying Buzzards sitting around the fields.  A small flock of Redwing were found in Holly trees.  Elsewhere both Song and Mistle Thrush were found plus a pair of Stonechat in rushy ground. On the River Tale a Grey Heron and L. Egret were present but we 'dipped' out on promised Dipper!  The bonus for some were Wallabies and Red Squirrels in their enclosures. Seasonal Greetings and best wishes to all.

Posted December 2nd, 2021 at 2:53 pm by Jonathan Ruscoe in Bird News

Crownhill Down, Dartmoor

Goldeneye (f) on huge flooded Tungsten West Pit at the top of the down this morning. Looked settled and diving regularly. 6 Snipe flushed from Crownhill Down. Three Reed Bunting, 6 Fieldfare and 18 Redwing also around.

Posted December 2nd, 2021 at 11:00 am by Chris E in Bird News

Wednesday 1st December 2021

Hembury Woods

late afternoon: an impressive 5 Woodcocks, including three going up from within metres of each other.

Posted December 1st, 2021 at 9:09 pm by Andy Smith in Bird News

Torquay & South Brent

Haldon Pier, Torquay , 3 Rock Pipit, Turnstone, 4 Purple Sandpiper.

Back home at South Brent in the stubble field alongside the house 30 plus Wood pigeon coming in to feed each day, 4 Pied Wagtails, not less than 36 Redwing, 3 Song Thrush, an adult male Sparrowhawk displayed beautifully as it hunted over the field trying to flush the small birds.

Good numbers of Greenfinch coming into the garden feeders usually 12 or so at any one time.

Posted December 1st, 2021 at 4:37 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

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