From hovering Kestrel, gliding Buzzard, hawking Swift, tail twitching Dunnock to fluttering juvenile Coal Tit soliciting for food, Plymouth branch’s visit to two sites at Clearbrook had much to offer and interest the 28 participants, including some individuals keen to join Devon Birds and attending their first event.

Compared to the recce 10 days ago, there was a noticeable switch from song to call for many species, the exceptions being Yellowhammer (with a low fat option of not much cheese, but the rest of the phrase intact) and the joyous burbling cascade of notes from Skylark and comparatively loud tuneful phrases from Blackcap.

A number of adult birds notably Willow Warbler and Meadow Pipit, were working very hard and were seen taking food to nest sites or fledglings.

Along the River Meavy a gravity defying Treecreeper was observed and a family of Goldcrest in the whippy Alder branches. There were, as yet, few flowers in the meadows along the riverside, resulting in only half of the butterfly species visitors to this area might expect to encounter. Perhaps the wildlife in this location was just toying with us, planning on keeping us coming back for more. It certainly has much to offer from heathland, to woodland and riverside habitats each with its own eclectic mix of species.

Total bird species seen or heard (H) = 42

Pheasant, Grey Heron, Buzzard, Kestrel, Peregrine, Herring Gull, Woodpigeon, Collared Dove, Cuckoo, Swift, Green Woodpecker (H), Skylark, Swallow, House Martin, Meadow Pipit, Grey Wagtail, Dunnock, Robin, Stonechat, Song Thrush, Mistle Thrush, Blackbird, Blackcap (H), Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff, Goldcrest, Wren (H), Great Tit, Coal Tit, Treecreeper, Magpie, Jackdaw, Carrion Crow, Raven (H), Starling, House Sparrow, Chaffinch, Linnet, Goldfinch, Greenfinch, Yellowhammer

Butterflies: Green-veined White, Brimstone, Green Hairstreak, Holly Blue, Common Blue, Red Admiral, Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary, Small Heath, Speckled Wood, Meadow Brown, Large Skipper.

Dragonflies: Beautiful Demoiselle, Large Red Damselfly

Other insects identified: Chimney Sweeper Moth, Carder Bee sp, Hornet

Report by Mary Johnson





Willow Warbler


Meadow Pipit


Large Red Damselfly