Devon Bird Sightings: Bird News from 8th–14th February 2021

2020 Records request

If you saw any of the records below please submit a description to the County Recorder Recorder@DevonBirds.org to ensure they make the official record. Many thanks.

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·         Bee-eater 03-Aug Wistlandpound Res

·         Caspian Gull 15-Apr Fremington Pill

·        Crane [3] 22-Mar Milton Abbot

·         Glossy Ibis 20-Jun South Efford Marsh

·         Glossy Ibis  02-Nov Seaton Marshes

·         Golden Oriole 07-Apr Fremington Pill

·         Golden Oriole 28-May Weston Mill

·         Golden Oriole [2] 23-Jun Bolt Head

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·         Green-winged Teal Nov/Dec Exe Estuary

·         Grey Partridge 12-Nov Exminster Marshes

·         Leach's Petrel 30- Sep Labrador Bay

·         Leach's Petrel 31-Oct Sidmouth

·         Long-tailed Skua 04-Jul Dawlish Warren

·         Montagu's Harrier 17-May West Dart River

·         Ring-necked Duck Jan/Feb Meeth

·         Spotted Crake 09-Apr East Down

·        Stone-curlew [2] 22-Sep South Huish

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Posted June 18th at 11:40 pm by Kevin Rylands in Bird News

DEVON BIRDS BRANCH MEETINGS AND FIELD TRIPS - UPDATE

At a recent Council Meeting it was agreed that Field Trips (Guided Walks) and Indoor Meetings could restart as soon as Branches were happy to proceed, with all necessary Covid safe precautions in place. 

Full details are now on the website.

Taw & Torridge Branch will not be re-starting Indoor or Outdoor Meetings before January 2022.

Posted April 16th at 11:17 am by Mike Daniels in Bird News

Membership

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 14th February 2021

Fremington Quay

Two Spoonbill feeding in the River Taw towards Penhill Point.  Cattle egret in fields behind the cafe. Greenshank in the Pill.  I haven’t seen the Ibis since early February and the start of this cold spell. 

Posted February 14th at 10:07 pm by Paul Bearman in Bird News

Velator

Interesting that a Whimbrel was heard calling down south, I thought I heard one from the reserve today. I didn't hear it again and dismissed it as my hearing! I also thought it was a bit early, but who knows? Other sightings today were a calling and then displaying Buzzard, a Goldcrest, only one Redwing today, but once again probably 60+ Goldfinch. Nearby on Wrafton Pond the battle of the adult and juvenile Swans is still ongoing - 2 cygnets present today. along with Shoveler, Wigeon (back after a day out yesterday) and Gadwall.

Posted February 14th at 7:28 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

West Charleton Marsh

Spoonbill still present until13:30 at least. Whimbrel heard calling on the estuary.

Posted February 14th at 5:50 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Great Crested Grebe

A lunchtime walk around Plymouth's seafront produced a Great Crested Grebe in Millbay Docks and a Great Northern Diver off Drake's Island viewed from 'Rusty Anchor' -West Hoe

Posted February 14th at 5:08 pm by Ian Teague in Bird News

Hope's Nose

14.30

Juv Glaucous Gull mobile around the site in very wet and windy conditions.  

Three Great Northern Divers in Hope Cove.  

Posted February 14th at 4:15 pm by Paul Darlington in Bird News

Teignmouth Seafront - Point Car Park 13:45

Lots of gulls (many hundreds) feeding close to shore, mainly Herring Gulls, some Great Black Black Backed. Quite a few Black Headed also, picked up a Mediterranean Gull with them. Five Great Northern Divers close in as well, feeding on shore crabs in quite shallow water.


Posted February 14th at 3:22 pm by Simon Bates in Bird News

Totnes garden

6 siskins on the bird feeder today - that's the biggest number so far. Also a male blackcap made an appearance. 

Posted February 14th at 1:01 pm by Jon Flynn in Bird News

Around Ilfracombe

4 Purple Sandpipers working the rocks off Capstone, Black Redstart around Bath Place, Greater Black-backed gulls harbour along with solitary Black=headed.

Posted February 14th at 12:14 pm by David Shadwell in Bird News

Trewsweir Exeter Long-tailed Duck

Female winter Long-tailed Duck on city side of weir at 0845. 

Posted February 14th at 9:42 am by Mike Booth in Bird News

Trewsweir Long-tailed Duck

Photo to previous submission 


Posted February 14th at 9:13 am by Mike Booth in Bird News

Saturday 13th February 2021

West Charleton Marsh

Spoonbill present late afternoon.

Posted February 13th at 7:15 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Torquay

This morning, at Hope's Nose in very strong winds and snow showers, an adult Mediterranean Gull past the point.

Later at Torquay Harbour, a KIngfisher and Great Crested Grebe close to Princess Pier.  Then, at nearby Torre Abbey Sands, an adult and a second winter Mediterranean Gull.   

Posted February 13th at 5:08 pm by Paul Darlington in Bird News

Otterton

Cold windy circular walk from Otterton - Monks Wall - Brandy Head - Stantyway - Otterton. A "bird wave" near the football club comprising all the common tits and finches. Fulmar off the cliffs but nothing on the rough sea. Peregrine flying up and down the coast and an odd looking bird of prey low down over ploughed coastal field battling the wind - ?? Goshawk (but probably just a buzzard !). Fields around Stantyway busy with Cirl Bunting, Chaffinch, Goldfinch, Brambling, Siskin and (?Meadow) Pipits. Also a flock of Fieldfare with a few Redwing and a Song thrush.

Posted February 13th at 4:30 pm by Steve Ross in Bird News

Fremington Quay

Two Spoonbill feeding in the River Taw towards Penhill Point.  Cattle egret in fields behind the cafe. Greenshank in the Pill.  I haven’t seen the Ibis since early February and the start of this cold spell. 

Posted February 13th at 4:11 pm by Paul Bearman in Bird News

Red Kite at Tiverton 10/02/21

I got a good close view of a Red Kite flying low over the A361 at Gornhay Cross Tiverton.It seemed interested in a dead pheasant in the carriageway.It made two passes over the carrion and then flew across a nearby field.

Posted February 13th at 2:55 pm by A STUTHRIDGE in Bird News

Plym Estuary & Saltram

Significant additions to the two Chris' posts: 3 Red-breasted Mergansers (2 drakes), 21 Wigeon, Green Woodpecker, Jack Snipe, 2 Snipe & 4 Roe Deer.

Thanks to the Axe Estuary Ringing Group, I now have details of the ringed Shelduck (A06) seen this week on Blaxton Meadow. It is a rehibiltated bird, ringed last September on the Axe Estuary and is the first such control from the Plym Estuary.

Posted February 13th at 2:38 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Blaxton Meadow...continued

Not long after Chris E. left the Teal number rose to 8, with a singe drake. An adult winter Mediterranean Gull (not the Polish ringed bird). On the river a different 6 Goosander, 4 drakes & 2 redheads, another 2 redheads further down the estuary. Common Sandpiper, 3 Little Grebe and Grey Wagtail.

Posted February 13th at 11:47 am by Chris Marcol in Bird News

Blaxton Meadow

Highlights first thing: Grey Plover and Bar-tailed Godwit still. 15 Wigeon, 5 Teal, 7 Greenshank, 2 Goosander (1m,1f) - further 6 on the Plym (3m,3f) - Kingfisher, 3 Common Gull and Barnacle Goose

Posted February 13th at 8:20 am by Chris E in Bird News

Molland Common

These are the images that I was able to get in the very windy conditions.

Fieldfare
Fieldfare
Three Fieldfares
Three Fieldfares

Posted February 13th at 1:26 am by Martin Bennett in Bird News

Wrafton pond

Today (Friday 12) while on my way to Ilfracombe I popped in to Wrafton pond.  There were a few Shoveler (m) and a couple of females, two Gadwall (one m and one fm), a couple of Wigeon and the usual Mallard, Coots, Moorhens and gulls.  However out on the scrape were 50+ Lapwings, three Dunlin, a small number of Teal m&f, a small flock of Starlings and Finches that were too far away to clearly id and there were also a few Rooks. After my work in Ilfracombe I moved on to another on Exmoor where my journey took me through Molland common. Very windy up there but I did see a small number of Fieldfares, two Mistle Thrush and a flock of Starlings (flock size at least 500). 

Teal
Teal
Lapwing and three Common Sandpiper
Lapwing and three Dunlin

Posted February 13th at 1:24 am by Martin Bennett in Bird News

Friday 12th February 2021

Eider ducks on river otter today

Eider 

Posted February 12th at 6:43 pm by Robert Jones in Bird News

Plym Estuary & Saltram

Chris’ Grey Plover returned to Blaxton Meadow tonight (after feeding on the estuary) together with 1 Bar-tailed Godwit, 64 Curlews & 2 Teal. Also today whilst battling the strong easterly, 2 Red-breasted Mergansers (1 drake), redhead Goosander, 15 Wigeon, the Barnacle Goose, female Red-crested Pochard, 9 Mandarin Ducks, 3+ Snipe, Jack Snipe, Peregrine, Green Woodpecker & 9 Roe Deer.

Posted February 12th at 6:20 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Goodrington

Parked up and went back to take a closer look at this road casualty, which  I didn't recognise as I drove past initially. It was on the main road outside the shops at Goodrington.  It turned out to be a female Common Scoter, no doubt blown inland by the strong easterlies!

Broadsands:  6 Mediterranean Gulls today 1fw, 4 ad w (this morning) and 1 sw (this afternoon)

Dead Road casualty  female Common Scoter

Posted February 12th at 5:43 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Plym Saltram

At Low tide the Plym had 2 Bar Tailed Godwit, Curlew, Redshank, 2 Goosander, 2 Little Grebe, 17 Wigeon, Little Egret and Shelduck' 2 Shoveler on the flooded meadow. 2 Redwing behind Sainsburys. RC Pochard on the Duck pond. Barnacle Goose in front of Saltram House with Curlew, Canada Geese and 2 Stonechat.

Posted February 12th at 2:40 pm by David Grant in Bird News

Plympton

Yesterday on a walk from Boringdon Golf Course to Blaxton Meadow. Golden Plover 30+,flock of 30+ Skylarks, and a Snipe on stubble near Boringdon Hall .Peregrine 1, Nuthatches, Great Tits, Blue Tits and Marsh Tits at Cann Quarry,. 4 Dippers (1 singing) 18 Mandarin Ducks, 4 Goosanders, 2 Grey Wagtail, Goldcrest, Redwings,S. Thrush, Buzzards, between Plymbridge and Coypool. At Blaxton Meadow Pied Wagtails, Redshank, Little Egret,, Little Grebe, Canada Geese, Wigeon, Shoveller (i male, 4 females) Shelduck and 1 female Teal.

Buzzard
Buzzard
Dipper
Dipper

Posted February 12th at 1:42 pm by Bob Barrow & John Lloyd in Bird News

River Otter

Blustery day. On the cricket pitch - 14 Brent Geese with a single Greater Black Backed Gull and many Herring and Black Headed Gulls. Many Mallard, Wigeon and Teal, with 6 Shoveler, 12 Shelduck and single Pintail still around. 60 Canada Geese and 3 Mute Swans. On the scrapes 25 Curlew, 10 Redshank, and approx 30 Dunlin. 2 Lapwing but no Snipe today.Single Avocet (!) on estuary- never seen one here before. 2 Bullfinch, 2 Redwing, 1 Little Grebe. 4 Grey Heron very close. 2 Little Egret obligingly standing with the Cattle Egret for comparison near the aqueduct (with the cows!). 1 Kingfisher and the Dipper in it's usual spot upstream from Otterton Mill. Many other tits and finches - especially large numbers of "charming" Goldfinch.

Posted February 12th at 12:37 pm by Steve Ross in Bird News

Trews Weir, Exeter

My best bird of the lockdown so far, immature long-tailed duck quay side of weir.

Posted February 12th at 12:30 pm by Alan Keatley in Bird News

S Molton

Greenfinch feeding on cotoneaster berries; Siskin singing in community woodland.

Posted February 12th at 12:02 pm by art symons in Bird News

Lesser redpoll

Lesser redpoll back on the feeders just outside Okehampton 


Posted February 12th at 11:15 am by Laurence smith in Bird News

Blaxton Meadow, Saltram

At first light this morning among the usual Curlews, Oystercatcher and Redshank I picked out 6 Greenshank, 3 Bar-tailed Godwit and a probable Golden Plover.  A Buzzard spooked the lot. When they came back down there was a Grey Plover and a Ringed Plover. Two female Teal and the Polish Mediterranean Gull.

Last evening around 5:45 there were 14 Goosander, 5 males and 9 redheads off the meadow at the 'Gas Pipe' bend of the river. No sign of them this morning. 

Posted February 12th at 10:35 am by Chris Marcol in Bird News

Thursday 11th February 2021

South Brent

Raven and Green Woodpecker showing well at home today, during the morning a Black Headed Gull flew past the house a bit of a rarity here.

Around the feeders a female Reed Bunting.

Reed Bunting
Reed Bunting
Raven
Raven

Posted February 11th at 8:39 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

Passage house, newton abbot

Redshank, kingfisher, egrets, x6 coromants, snipe, curlew.  And weirdly a set of bird wings(no body attatched) possibly owl wings just hanging in the tree. 

Posted February 11th at 8:38 pm by Iain morland in Bird News

Otter Estuary, Budleigh Salterton

Some signs of cold weather movement over the last couple of days with a single Avocet and Bar-tailed Godwit (both uncommon here) and also 85 Dunlin (a very high count for the estuary). The Cattle Egret continues to roost on either the river N of White Bridge or on the estuary S of White Bridge. Other birds today included 4 adult Med Gulls and 23 Dark-bellied Brent Geese.

Avocet, Otter Estuary by Chris Townend

Posted February 11th at 8:02 pm by Chris Townend in Bird News

Broadsands

Several hundred mostly Herring Gulls at Broadsands today mixed in with them 50+ Black-headed Gulls, 30+ common Gulls and a couple of Mediterranean Gulls. Also this very odd looking 1st winter Lesser Black-backed Gull  - the same bird was seen and photographed in Penzance over the Christmas period and also noted on the Hayle Estuary.

   Lesser Black-backed Gull fw Broadsands ML  Lesser Black-backed Gull fw Broadsands ML

Posted February 11th at 6:50 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Topsham Quay

13:00

Spotted Redshank (1), Long-tailed Duck (f) (1) amongst the 20+ Red-breasted Merganser, Avocet, Teal, Dunlin, Curlew.

Posted February 11th at 5:21 pm by Paul Bray in Bird News

Marsh Green

A fine Fieldfare dropped in this morning after I put out the last few apples I had stored for the winter.  The feeders have been busy of late with a party of ten Long tailed Tit my favourites.

Posted February 11th at 3:08 pm by Jonathan Ruscoe in Bird News

Fremington Pill

Wednesday morning walk along Fremington pill was at first a little disappointing, however things started to improve when a few new comers appeared. Four or five Pied Wagtails, a single Greenfinch, a Song Thrush, a couple of Robins, a couple of Crows and a Great tit graced the area.  The usual suspects were there.  Four Little Egrets at the head of the pill, a Greenshank, a Spotted Redshank, two Shelduck, a few Teal and Redshank, one Black headed gull and three Curlew.

Carrion Crow
Carrion Crow
Robin
Robin

Posted February 11th at 2:14 am by Martin Bennett in Bird News

Wednesday 10th February 2021

PLympton

This afternoon 30+ Golden Plover over farm fields near Plymbridge Lane. 3 male and 4 female Goosanders on pond at Boringdon Golf Course. 20+ Skylarks,I Snipe and a solitary Peregrine.

Golden Plover
Golden Plover
Goosander male
Goosander male

Posted February 10th at 8:00 pm by Bob Barrow in Bird News

Plym Estuary & Saltram

A Red Kite which flew over (SE at c14.00) was my first in Plymouth, and totally unexpected. Also signs of cold weather movements included 26 Golden Plovers over & (on Blaxton Meadow) a female Pintail & 6 Teal. In addition: Bar-tailed Godwit, Common Sandpiper, 2 or 3 Jack Snipe, Snipe, 16 Wigeon, 7 Goosanders (4 drakes), 2 Red-breasted Mergansers (1 drake), 2 Mandarin Ducks (pair), female Red-crested Pochard, the Barnacle Goose, Peregrine, Sparrowhawk, Green Woodpecker, 1 or 2 Stonechats, 2 Siskins, the Polish-ringed adult Mediterranean Gull "PHAU" & 9 Roe Deer. 

Posted February 10th at 5:09 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Plymouth Hoe

A Great Northern Diver offshore and a Purple Sandpiper with 3 Turnstones on the rocks below the Pier One cafe today on my Plymouth Hoe walk. However the highlight was a Red Kite flying over causing uproar amongst the Herring Gulls.

Red Kite
Red Kite
Purple Sandpiper with Turnstones
Purple Sandpiper with Turnstones

Posted February 10th at 5:08 pm by Stuart Green in Bird News

Aylesbeare Common

09:56 - 11:49

Three Crossbill, Goldcrest, a pair of Bullfinch, Dartford Warblers calling the highlight.

Posted February 10th at 5:08 pm by Paul Bray in Bird News

Newnham Meadows to Newnham Park

Yesterday mid-afternoon, no Firecrests but Goldcrest female in the meadows and an orange crested male on the Tory Brook. Loads of finches including Goldfinch, Chaffinch, Siskin, Bullfinch and Greenfinch in descending order of number.  What seemed unusual was a flock of 30 or 40 Meadow Pipit in the tree-tops at Holly Wood moving over into the park still in the trees and not down into the sheep field. At the same time were a few Redwing. 

Posted February 10th at 2:32 pm by Chris & Janet Marcol in Bird News

Fern Way, Ilfracombe

Another black redstart in Fern Way, a female this time.

Posted February 10th at 2:04 pm by Ann Kingston in Bird News

Re: Blackcaps in Braunton

In response to Phil and Sue Naylor's question about the age and sex of Blackcaps visiting their feeders. Young Blackcaps fledge with a brown cap but undergo a partial post-juvenile moult, including the cap, which is usually finished in October. By now, any bird with a brown cap will definitely be a female with last year's young and older females indistinguishable in the field.

Posted February 10th at 10:11 am by Alan Pomroy in Bird News

Plympton

Three Firecrest this morning. One in the garden and two in vegetation along the Tory Brook near Newnham Park entrance.

Posted February 10th at 8:52 am by Chris E in Bird News

Tuesday 9th February 2021

Gullemot at Hallsands

Guillemot sheltering amongst the rocks from the easterly storms at Hallsands.

Posted February 9th at 10:22 pm by Julia Churchley in Bird News

Blackcap numbers increasing in our Braunton garden

We have enjoyed watching the birds demolishing the National Trust peanut fat cakes which we hang in the hedge near our kitchen window.  They get through a 500g cake in about four days. We've seen Blackbirds, Great, Blue and Coal Tits, Robin's & Greenfinch all enjoying the feast, but the stars have been the Blackcaps; their antics are fascinating to watch and there are now FOUR with black caps and THREE with brown caps. We thought the brown capped ones were females but...apparently the juveniles have brown caps too and we've noticed that the black capped males often chase the brown capped ones off? We think, maybe, they are the juves,  because they can tolerate occasional brown capped ones...so are they the females? Fascinating stuff! Very entertaining. Interestingly; the House Sparrows of which we now have approximately 15, do not use the peanut fat cake, preferring the seeded fat balls, no mess seed mix and kibbled sunflower hearts. 

Posted February 9th at 9:38 pm by Phil and Sue Naylor in Bird News

S Molton Community woodlands

Singing Siskins yesterday (8th) and today. Probing lichen.

Posted February 9th at 9:02 pm by art symons in Bird News

Thrushes Modbury

A few redwings and song thrushes at the bottom of my garden feeding on the ivy berries

Redwing
Redwing
Song Thrush
Song Thrush

Posted February 9th at 7:55 pm by Richie Moore in Bird News

River Otter (estuarial)

Teal, wigeon, curlew, mallard, BB Brent Geese, around 70 Dunlin, at least 4 Ringed Plover, 4 Heron and a very handsome Cormorant in breeding plumage.

Cormorant in breeding plumage
Cormorant in breeding plumage
Ringed Plover
Ringed Plover

Posted February 9th at 6:22 pm by Peter Newman in Bird News

Plym Estuary & Saltram

A very cold circuit today but Bar-tailed Godwit & Teal new in & a Firecrest showing very well. Also, c60 Redwings, Great Spotted Woodpecker, 12 Mandarin Ducks (7 drakes), 4 Goosanders (2 drakes), 2 Red-breasted Mergansers (1 drake), 6 Little Grebes, 10 Wigeon & 12 Roe Deer. 

One of the (46) Shelducks was wearing a colour ring that appears to be from the Axe Estuary scheme (reported for details).

Posted February 9th at 3:47 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Velator

Despite the cold, Wigeon, Shoveler and Gadwall on Wrafton Pond, Redshank out on the scrape. In and near the reserve, about 60 Curlew in the field just to the south along with a busy flock of Starlings. Probably 40+ Goldfinch and 20 Greenfinch and rather enthusiastic singing Chaffinch! 3 Long-tailed Tits, 20+ Redwing, but best sighting was a small fast-flying flock of Golden Plover going over heading into the wind! First I've seen nearby for a long time.

Posted February 9th at 1:46 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

A cold wind.

Yesterday the 8th saw a flock of hundreds of Golden Plover beside the Warren car park above my village of Noss Mayo, today after a tip off I was rewarded for braving the artic conditions with a chough in the fields below the car park.


Posted February 9th at 11:27 am by Jonathan Rundle in Bird News

Plympton

Firecrest in bushes along Tory Brook near Newnham Park entrance this morning.

Posted February 9th at 8:34 am by Chris E in Bird News

Monday 8th February 2021

Crownhill Down to Lee Moor

A cold and windy walk over a near birdless Crownhill Down gave only singles of male Reed Bunting, Skylark, Stonechat, Wren and Mistle Thrush.  In Lower Lee Moor Wood all the usual tits with Nuthatch, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Kestrel and a dozen plus Redwing. 7nr Fallow hinds.  On Portworthy Ph3 dam 4 Teal and 4 Coot, but no sign of yesterday's 7nr Tufted Duck.

Posted February 8th at 9:57 pm by Chris & Janet Marcol in Bird News

A39 Hartland turning

While driving 1m Hen Harrier

Posted February 8th at 9:34 pm by Rodney Mudge in Bird News

Plym Estuary & Saltram

During a rather brisk walk this afternoon: Common Sandpiper, 24 Turnstones, Kestrel, 2 Goosanders (1 drake) & 9 Roe Deer.

Also, Peregrine over Mount Gould Park. 

Posted February 8th at 5:10 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Torquay Harbour

Lunchtime walk around Torquay Harbour and Torre Abbey Sands. 3 Purple Sandpipers, 2 Great C Grebes, 60+ Common Gull & Ad wint Med Gull. 

also Merlin just on edge of Alphington, Exeter on my way to work

Posted February 8th at 4:10 pm by Steve Cox in Bird News

Braunton

I thought fat-balls were good for something different, and today a male Blackcap arrived to prove me right. Unfortunately the aggressive local Robin was soon on hand to send him packing... In the reserve, the first Treecreeper of the year, and a Lapwing in the adjoining field to the south. Good numbers of Green and Goldfinch unusually perched and staying put when I raised the bins! 2 GSW, 1 Redwing, and a Raven on the way home.

Posted February 8th at 3:12 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Plympton

Green Woodpecker at Newnham Meadows Nature Reserve. Present for its second day. 

Posted February 8th at 2:14 pm by Chris E in Bird News

PLympton

Late yesterday afternoon a  flock of 30+ Golden Plovers seen  flying over farmers fields off Plymbridge Lane

Golden Plover
Golden Plover
Golden Plover
Golden Plover

Posted February 8th at 10:31 am by Bob Barrow in Bird News

Taw Estuary/ Crow Point

Yesterday 7/2/21, 100+ Brent Geese

Posted February 8th at 6:19 am by Beth Woollam in Bird News

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