Devon Bird Sightings: Bird News from 22nd–30th September 2022


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

Friday 30th September 2022


Single Sooty Shearwaters off the Outfalls,Capstone, then the Pier this afternoon all heading down channel. At least one Arctic Skua passing the Pier. 

Posted September 30th at 8:06 pm by Martin Thorne in Bird News

Lower Tamar Lake

Lower Tamar Lake this morning.

4 Willow Tit, 2 Marsh Tit, 1m Great Spotted Woodpecker, 6 Goldcrest foraging, 1 Kingfisher, 5 Great Crested Grebe, 15 Wigeon, 6 Coot, 3 Swallow, 2 Nuthatch, 3 Long-tailed Tit, 2 Wren, 4 Cormorant.

Posted September 30th at 2:49 pm by Rod Mudge in Bird News

Blackhill Quarry- Ringed Plovers

Further to my earlier post. Having looked at the photos again I have come to the conclusion that these are juv Ringed Plover and not Little Ringed as first thought. The shape is round and not slim and the ear coverts are rounded and not pointed amongst other features. Would be very happy for someone to comment.  Still 8 Plovers is good for the site.

Posted September 30th at 1:03 pm by Jonathan Ruscoe in Bird News

Crow Point, Fishermen huts & Caen Estuary

Oystercatchers resting peacefully on Crow Point around high tide until a windsurfer who launched at Broadsands by the White House sailed over & landed at Crow Point disturbing all of them without a single thought for the welfare of the birds.

A jet ski disturbed all the birds resting on the high tide roost at the Fishermens huts & then continued up the Caen Estuary to the Toll House, again without a single thought about the welfare of the birds

Disturbance on this Estuary system is at a very high level when more & more people are taking up nature watching.

Posted September 30th at 12:18 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Wrafton area

Nought of note on Wrafton Pond, but on the scrape 76 Black-tailed Godwits, 11 Knot, 2 Spotted Redshank, and 3 Redshank. About half-a-dozen House Martins hawking above. Goldcrest in the reserve, where in yesterday's warm sun an immaculate Wall Brown butterfly provided a reminder of the summer.

Also, one of the Godwits had colour rings on - I will send the details off and hope I got all the rings right, then post any replies on here.

Posted September 30th at 12:00 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Wrafton Scrape

9am this morning at Wrafton Scrape Jon Turner was already there. Still good numbers of black-tailed godwits and knot roosting. 3 common redshank at the back on the scrape and a snipe tucked in on the right. The 2 spotted redshank were very busy compared to everything else. 5 house martins flying over.

Spotted Redshank
Spotted Redshank

Posted September 30th at 11:26 am by Colin Dracott in Bird News


200 Swallows and 120 House Martins around Torcross with a Wheater at the tank.

Posted September 30th at 9:26 am by Steve Wadsworth in Bird News

Thursday 29th September 2022

Lower Tamar Lake

Lower Tamar Lake this morning.

1 Willow Tit, 3 Marsh Tit, 1 Wren, 5 Coot, 4 Great Crested Grebe, 72 Canada Geese, 1m juv Tufted Duck, 13 Wigeon, 2 Nuthatch.

Posted September 29th at 8:42 pm by Rod Mudge in Bird News

Great White Egret

Great White Egret is still about in East Devon and mostly frequenting Blackhill Quarry Ponds where water levels have dropped sufficiently as fish have become easy prey for this bird plus Grey Heron a Kingfisher and tonight a Little Egret. This amazing new habitat created by The Pebblebed Heaths Conservation Trust, Clinton Devon Estates has become a great new birding area for many to see heathland species, Wildfowl, waders, and many more throughout the seasons. The GWE first discovered 14 days ago by Rupert Ormerod is now roosting on the East Devon Common site. This site needs protecting its a real gem and keeps producing.

Blackhill GWE
Blackhill GWE
Arrived at Dusk
Arrived at Dusk

Posted September 29th at 8:40 pm by Derek Carter in Bird News

Exminster Marshes

Reed Bunting, Cettis Warblers, Swallows, House Martins, Kestrels, Buzzards, 10 Cattle Egrets, Curlew, Greenshank, Redshank, Common Sandpipers, Blackwits, Kingfishers.

Common Sandpiper
Common Sandpiper
Cattle Egret
Cattle Egret

Posted September 29th at 7:14 pm by Bob Barrow & John Lloyd in Bird News

Bowling Green Marsh

Curlew, Barwits, Blackwits, Common Sandpipers, Avocets, 3 Spoonbill, Dunlin, Knot, Greenshank, Grey Plover, Lapwings, Wigeon, Pintail, Shelduck, Buzzard, Sand martins.

Grey Plover
Grey Plover

Posted September 29th at 7:07 pm by Bob Barrow & John Lloyd in Bird News

Slapton Ley

80 Swallows north this afternoon, 2 Teal Stokley Bay

Posted September 29th at 5:22 pm by Steve Wadsworth in Bird News

Wrafton Area

Once again, plenty of waders on the scrape this morning at about 09.15 at high tide. 65 Black-tailed Godwits, 31 Knot, single Greenshank and Dunlin plus the two Spotted Redshank. A Curlew in a nearby field. Heron and Water Rail in the reserve, Skylark and Stonechat south of the reserve and at least a dozen House Martins hawking insects over the scrape and reserve area.

Posted September 29th at 2:24 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

River Taw and Fremington Pill.

2 Brent geese off Instow cricket ground...Adult Spoonbill roosting on Isley Marsh , 197 Redshank roosting around the sluice on Fremington Pill , 2 second winter Med. gulls.....

Posted September 29th at 1:11 pm by Malcolm Shakespeare in Bird News

Wednesday 28th September 2022

Two Osprey on River Tavy 28th Sept 2022

Two Osprey were fishing on the Tavy with no particular time or state of the tide, it seems they fished most of the day.

Perched eating small Bass I think.
Perched eating small Bass I think.
Flew most of the time on the upper area of the Tavy by the Maristow boat house.
Flew most of the time on the upper area of the Tavy by the Maristow boat house.

Posted September 28th at 8:41 pm by Barry Rankine in Bird News

Lower Otter & Blackhill Quarry

Mid-morning - substantial passage of Swallows and House Martins, many feeding over large herd of cattle on the Otter Restoration Project.  Peregrine.

Blackhill Quarry - Great White Egret flew at 1230 (probably same bird later seen on Otter) Grey Heron and a surprising Kingfisher.   Water level very low - clearly food available in this quarry lake. 

Posted September 28th at 6:38 pm by Rupert Ormerod in Bird News

Braunton Marshes & North side of Taw Estuary

First cycled around Braunton Marshes anti - clockwise on the inner marsh road.

Now 2 very easily spooked Cattle Egrets (spooked by a noisy motorcycle riding past on the road) in the field with the herd of black cows near Gallowell. 

Continued to the Tarka trail where I met Sue Bruce who arrived at the same time. With scopes deployed we both counted the Knot on the scrape. The Black tailed Godwits started leaving the scrape (not all at once) to fly to their feeding areas on the Taw Estuary (see photo),the Knot a little later, a total of 32.

The numbers of Black - tailed Godwits & Knot on the scrape were similar to the numbers foraging on the north side of the Taw Estuary on a falling tide so these were  were the same birds which were resting on Wrafton scrape around high tide.

At Pottington there were still 3 Curlew Sandpipers foraging with a small number of Dunlin

Posted September 28th at 3:07 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

East to Middle Soar

Best today was my first Merlin of the autumn, over the airfield. A westerly movement of 125 Meadow Pipit, 135 Skylark, 2 Bullfinch, Grey Wagtail and 6 Siskin.

Also: 9 Swallow, 260 Herring Gull, 240 Linnet, 31 House Sparrow, 41 Robin, 7 Wheatear, 27 Chiffchaff, Whitethroat,5 Blackcap, Golden Plover, 240 Linnet and a further 3 Bullfinch. 

Posted September 28th at 3:04 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Wrafton area

Another wader bonanza this morning!! Probably due to the early high tide, I was greeted by a calling Greenshank as I cycled up the trail, and quickly saw that there were in fact 3 present. With the 2 Spotted Redshank and about 75 Black-tailed Godwits as well as 21 Knot and a single Dunlin. Little Egret close by too. Kingfisher in the river. Heron, Blackcap and a large Tit-flock in the reserve.

Posted September 28th at 2:14 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Seaton Marshes

Cattle Egret in field next to Seaton Marshes yesterday.

Cattle Egret
Cattle Egret

Posted September 28th at 11:13 am by Geoff Mitchell in Bird News

Tuesday 27th September 2022

River Mole Valley

50 to 60 Swallows have spent the day continually flying around the farm yard and orchard…….mostly juveniles but at least 12 mature birds.Fabulous sight  and flight paths suggest that many could be the birds which breed in the old granary and shippen.(over 60 fledged this year). They perched on the electricity wires at about 4 pm attracting a male Sparrow Hawk and a flock of 150 Goldfinch .Elsewhere on the farm,2 Red Deer hinds and their calves

Posted September 27th at 10:17 pm by Brian Nicholas in Bird News

Sowton village

Four cattle egret amongst livestock on the footpath halfway between Sowton village and Clyst St Mary.  Also a female whinchat.

Posted September 27th at 5:43 pm by Robin Pearson? in Bird News

Bowling Green Marsh

06:18 - 07:18

1 Red-necked Phalarope feeding before flying towards Dart's Farm.

Posted September 27th at 5:24 pm by Paul Bray in Bird News


A couple of swallows seen flying about as i drove through Filleigh this afternoon.

Posted September 27th at 4:39 pm by Robert Morgan in Bird News

Wrafton Area

Once again most of the action was on the scrape this morning. 61 Black-tailed Godwits, 12 Knot, 1 Dunlin and the 2 Spotted Redshank. Gadwall on Wrafton Pond, Kingfisher, and a Heron in the reserve.

Posted September 27th at 1:00 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Braunton Marshes

am - 1 Cattle Egret but mobile in windy conditions.

Posted September 27th at 10:08 am by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Monday 26th September 2022

North side of Taw Estuary

This morning observed from the Tarka trail on the north side of the Taw Estuary from the Tarka Inn to Pottington were 47 Black-tailed Godwits, 4 Bar-tailed Godwits, 26 Knot, 45 Dunlin & amongst them 4 Curlew Sandpipers.

1 GreenSandpiper at Bradiford Reserve.

Posted September 26th at 10:10 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Upper Tamar Lake 26th Sept

2 Little Stint, 3 Curlew Sandpiper, 22 Dunlin, 27 Ringed Plover, 22 Cormorant, 1 Ruff, 1 Yellow-legged Gull, 5 Swallow, 2 Reed Bunting, 8 Grey Heron.

Posted September 26th at 7:26 pm by Rick Lockwood in Bird News


Waders at Wembury this morning included a mixed flock of 7 Turnstones, 12 Ringed Plovers, 11 Dunlin and a Sanderling. Mediterranean Gull numbers were clearly down c.f. mid-September with only 6 noted.

Posted September 26th at 6:01 pm by David Diskin in Bird News


1little Stint

Posted September 26th at 5:47 pm by Vic & Sylvia Tucker in Bird News

Mutters Moor, Sidmouth

10 members of DB attended this mornings field walk following a circuit of the heathland. 21 species listed in total but some common birds were noticeable by their absence. Of note were Raven, Kestrel, Green and Gt Spotted Woodpecker, Chiffchaff, Goldcrest, Swallow, House Martin, Jay and Buzzard. Dartford Warbler and Stonechat were both present in good numbers and typically seen together.

Posted September 26th at 2:47 pm by Jonathan Ruscoe in Bird News

Wrafton area

After Phil and Sue's report of hosts of waders, I had a good look this morning and found 66 Black-tailed Godwits, 3 Knot, 1 Dunlin, and the 2 Spotted Redshank. On Wrafton Pond a pair of Gadwall, and 40+ Black-headed Gulls. In the reserve GSW, Kingfisher, Buzzard, and off to the South over the reed-beds, a female Marsh Harrier. Possible Swallow over.

Posted September 26th at 1:20 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Sunday 25th September 2022

Countesswear - Powderham Park

Of note were 20+ newly-returned Shelducks, 250+Teal, 150+ Wigeon, 3 Cattle Egrets, 2 Common and 1 Green Sandpipers, 6 Ringed Plovers, 12+ Greenshanks, 2 Marsh Harriers, the usual Kestrel (being robbed of its prey by a Crow), 10+ House Martins, 20+ Swallows (all of both heading North!), 400+ Starlings, 4 Cettis (one still singing) and 3 Blackcaps.

Back in Exeter, a Black-tailed Godwit was in the pan of the Trews Weir flood channel, a less-than-one-in-ten-year occurrence.

Posted September 25th at 10:44 pm by James Camden in Bird News


Dead Gannets are washing ashore most days now. The first  Redwings of the autumn today at Mullacote cross Ind estate. 

In Barnstaple, returning german BH Gull black X26M has arrived behind the leisure center- I missed it last winter.

Posted September 25th at 9:34 pm by Martin Thorne in Bird News

Seaton Marshes and Widworthy

A few linnets with red shanks, curlews, widgeon and egrets at Seaton Marsh, a chiffchaff at Widworthy this morning.


Posted September 25th at 8:50 pm by Geoff Mitchell in Bird News

Rv Tavy Osprey's

Another day with the Ospreys down on the Rv Tavy at Maristow, ten sightings in total, at one point two birds  Also hunting Sparrowhawk, several Buzzards, Kingfisher, Common Sandpiper, Red Legged Partridge and two Dunlin.


Posted September 25th at 8:27 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

Velator scrape

An evening visit to Wrafton Pond and the scrape produced nothing of note on the Pond apart from a Cettis heard. The scrape was busier: 81 Black Tailed Godwit, 11 Knot, 2 Spotted Redshank, 2 Dunlin and 2 Snipe along with a Grey Heron and numerous teal. On Wrafton Water on the riding tide one female Kingfisher.

Two snipe
Two snipe
Distant view of Spotted Redshank
Distant view of Spotted Redshank

Posted September 25th at 7:47 pm by Phil and Sue Naylor in Bird News

Powderham Church to Turf, Exe

Walk towards Turf from Powderham Church. 15 Cattle Egret, 100+ Goldfinch, 40+ Linnet, 200+ Starling, Meadow Pipit on the land. Barwit, 115 Dunlin, 4 Ringed Plover, 4 Avocet, 28+ Little Egret, 3 Sandwich Tern on the estuary. 

Posted September 25th at 6:22 pm by Steve Cox in Bird News

Tamar estuary

At low tide:  115 Oystercatcher, 23 Black tailed Godwit, 12 Great crested Grebe, 3 female Teal first of the Autumn, 2 Greenshank and a Common Sandpiper.

Posted September 25th at 2:58 pm by Alan Livsey in Bird News


White tailed eagle high over Torquay just now!

Posted September 25th at 2:44 pm by Helen Whitall in Bird News

Wigford Down (Dartmoor)

Very quiet.  Two female type Wheatears on the rock pile on top of Down, one Swallow moving east, one only Stonechat, 5 Ravens, 6 Skylarks, about 19 Meadow Pipits.

About 1100 three brownhead Goosanders on Shaugh Lake.  Possibly additional to Bob's two on the Plym.

Posted September 25th at 2:11 pm by roger smaldon in Bird News

Upper Tamar Lake

1 Woodcock, 13 Grey Heron.

Posted September 25th at 12:39 pm by Rod Mudge in Bird News


FIRECREST in the garden this morning..

Posted September 25th at 11:54 am by Margaret Phillips in Bird News

Cadover Bridge

Brief early morning visit to Cadover: Blackcap, Grey Wagtail, Chaffinches, Linnets, Willow Warblers, and an overflying Raven. Redhead Goosanders on the Plym just upriver from the bridge.


Posted September 25th at 11:14 am by Bob Barrow in Bird News

South Huish early morning

Little stint (1 juv), 13 Black-tailed godwit (mostly juvs), Dunlin (5 juvs),  Ringed plover (16 on rocks), 2 Wheatear, large mixed Swallow/House martin flock including 1 albino Swallow, Water rail

Posted September 25th at 10:29 am by Richard Archer in Bird News

Start Bay

The Bay is full with seabirds this morning, thousands of wheeling Gannets and gulls, can see a few auks with bins!

Posted September 25th at 9:07 am by Steve Wadsworth in Bird News

Saturday 24th September 2022


Good morning concentrating on open country withthe highlight being a Dotterel calling over the fields at Middle Soar. Also 3 Golden Plover (first of autumn), 540 Meadow Pipit moving west & grounded, 430 Linnet, 35 Alba Wagtail (looked like all Pied), 27 Swallow, 34 House Martin, 8 Wheatear, male Sparrowhawk, 8 Chiffchaff & 15 Blackcap.

Posted September 24th at 2:13 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Lower Tamar Lake

Lower Tamar Lake this morning.

1 Willow Tit, 2 Marsh Tit, 4 Long-tailed Tit, 5 Coal Tit, 5 Robin, 1 Jay, 6 Moorhen, 1 Cormorant, 6 Great Crested Grebe, 5 Great Tit, 1 Nuthatch, 23 Mallard, 4f Wigeon, 3 Teal, 4 Black-headed Gull, 3 Wren.

Posted September 24th at 2:10 pm by Rod Mudge in Bird News

Dart estuary Galmpton

1 juvenile Osprey circling the river over Dittisham this morning.

Posted September 24th at 1:33 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Golden Plover Dartmoor

Ridden Ridge, Dartmoor, 1030

65 Golden Plover put up by a female Marsh Harrier. Good views of the Harrier hunting for at least 30 mins in the area it then  gained height on a thermal and headed west towards Princetown. 

Posted September 24th at 11:42 am by Gary Easton in Bird News

Friday 23rd September 2022

Lyme Bay cruise

Heading out into Lyme Bay on a fairly lumpy sea made viewing a bit tricky but we did enjoy this cracking intermediate phase juvenile Long-tailed Skua about 1 mile off Berry Head (photo from Bill Coulson) also on trip, 12+ Balearic Shearwaters, 8-10 Arctic Skuas, 1 Great Skua, hundreds of Kittiwakes and Gannets, 3 Purple Sandpipers, 1 Mediterranean Gull 26+ Common Dolphins and 6 or more Harbour Porpoises.

   Juv Long-tailed Skua Lyme Bay 23 Sep 2022 Bill Coulson  Juv Long-tailed Skua Lyme Bay 23 Sep 2022 Bill Coulson

                    Long tailed Skua, juvenile, intermediate phase (photos Bill Coulson)

Posted September 23rd at 9:29 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Wrafton Scrape

Quick pre dinner visit to the scrape at 1800hrs. 62 Black Tail Godwits, 20 Knot, and the 2 Spotted Redshank diving furiously around feeding. 
Bonus bird, Green Sandpiper made a brief appearance before disappearing into the undergrowth.

Posted September 23rd at 9:17 pm by Andy Leat in Bird News

Crownhill Down

Very quiet on the Down except for several Wheatears and 4 f. Teal on one of the small ponds.


Posted September 23rd at 8:17 pm by Bob Barrow in Bird News

Plym Estuary & Saltram

A visit this afternoon produced the following. Knot 1, Bar-tailed Godwit 16, Dunlin 14, Redshank 187, Greenshank 7, Curlew 21, Grey Heron 14, Little Egret 13, Kingfisher 1 & Green Woodpecker.

Also in the area, a Red-backed Shrike was seen in a area with no public access.

Posted September 23rd at 8:01 pm by Martin Phillips in Bird News

Tamar Lakes

5 Ruff, 1Lapwing, 1 Little Stint, 2 Yellow Legged Gulls,good numbers of Ringed Plover, Dunlin 3 Curlew Sandpiper.  1 Jay and 1 Kestrel.

Posted September 23rd at 7:35 pm by jenny elvin in Bird News

Bowling Green Marsh


3 Spoonbill; 3 Grey Plover; 1 Curlew Sandpiper amongst vastly increased numbers of Wigeon, Pintail, Teal etc 

Posted September 23rd at 7:22 pm by Paul Bray in Bird News

Wrafton Scrape

Quick pre dinner visit to the scrape at 1800hrs. 62 Black Tail Godwits, 20 Knot, and the 2 Spotted Redshank diving furiously around feeding. 
Bonus bird, Green Sandpiper made a brief appearance before disappearing into the undergrowth.

Posted September 23rd at 6:35 pm by Andy Leat in Bird News

Taw between Heanton and Chivenor

Osprey seen fishing on incoming tide at around 3.00 pm.

Posted September 23rd at 5:25 pm by Fozz Forsdike in Bird News

European Roller.

Still showing well at Bere Ferrers this morning.

Posted September 23rd at 2:48 pm by Peter Castle in Bird News

North Devon Spoonbill

Photos of the Spoonbill on Saltpill Duck Pond.

Posted September 23rd at 11:33 am by Dave Paterson in Bird News

Redlake Track, Bittaford

Along the Redlake Track, Bittaford this morning, just above Harford two male Hen Harrier quartering the ground before heading out towards the moors. Female Merlin hunting, eleven Kestrel sightings which I suspect revolved around four birds that kept coming into view and a very vocal young Buzzard.

Two Wheatear, Stonechat, numerous Skylark and Meadow Pipit.

Posted September 23rd at 10:25 am by Steve Hopper in Bird News

North Devon Spoonbill

1 Spoonbill on Saltpill Duck Pond this morning. Photos to follow.

Posted September 23rd at 10:04 am by Dave Paterson in Bird News

Thursday 22nd September 2022

Prawle point

Brief visit to fields near Gammon Head to see the 3 Choughs despite harrassment from Crows they returned to the same field and were really confiding.


Posted September 22nd at 8:17 pm by Bob Barrow in Bird News

Bere Ferrers

The European Roller is still showing off on it's favourite perches. Osprey also flew directly over the village at around 1.15pm. Five Curlew Sandpipers on the estuary mudflats in Bere Ferrers.

Posted September 22nd at 6:22 pm by Fred Jenkins in Bird News

Wrafton scrape

Late afternoon update.  60 Black-tailed Godwits, 2 Spotted Redshank and 5 Knot (although Sue Bruce tells me she saw 17 of the latter earlier on). Nearby in the reserve at least 5 Chiffchaffs and a Blackcap. 2 Gadwall on Wrafton Pond.

Posted September 22nd at 6:08 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Prawle village.

Red Kite. Please note Prawle. Point car park closed until 10 Oct.    South Huish ,3 Cattle Egret,1 Reeve,1 Curlew Sandpiper, 10 Dunlin,15 Blk T. Godwits.

Posted September 22nd at 4:42 pm by Vic & Sylvia Tucker in Bird News

Soar Mill Valley & Southdown Farm

Very few migrants in today's tally of 74 Robin, 28 Greenfinch, 80 Goldfinch, 220 Linnet, 25 Chiffchaff, 11 Blackcap, 2 Whitethroat, Great Spotted Woodpecker flying north, first autumn Goldcrest, 14 Teal, Sparrowhawk & 3 Kestrel.

Non--avian: 2 Clouded Yellow, four male Red-veined Darter & 5 Sika Deer inc.3 stags.

Posted September 22nd at 2:55 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Maristow Tavy Estuary

At 1050, just after low water, an Osprey flew downstream from Lopwell carrying a half-eaten fish.  It flew up into Blaxton Wood and was lost from view.

Also seen a Kingfisher, Stock Dove and three Chiffchaffs.

Posted September 22nd at 2:44 pm by roger smaldon in Bird News

Sharpa / Wrafton scrape

On the way along the Tarka trail towards Barnstaple this morning 2 Spotted Redshank foraging energegetically on the scrape.

Posted September 22nd at 2:15 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Wrafton scrape

Arrived early at the scrape (well, 9.15) to find 2 Spotted Redshank dashing about in feeding mode! 5 Black-tailed Godwits.

Posted September 22nd at 12:45 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

South Dartmoor

Single Golden Plover over Three Barrows yesterday, calling, eventually headed west over Glaze Valley.

Posted September 22nd at 8:35 am by Peter Reay in Bird News

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