Monday, 24 April 2017

Monday 24th April

An early morning visit had a corvid focus with single Jay, Jackdaw and Rook recorded along with 13 Wheatear and four Whitethroat on site and four Swallow overhead.

Sunday, 23 April 2017

Sunday 23rd April

Counts from the estuary included 22 Pale-bellied Brent, 34 Dunlin, 12 Whimbrel, three Ringed Plover and two Bar-tailed Godwit. Elsewhere two Red-throated Diver were offshore and two Wheatear were in Greenland Lake.

Saturday, 22 April 2017

Saturday 22nd April

Migrants continue to trickle through but the best remained offsite, a Cuckoo calling from the mainland at Eastdon. In the recording area there were a couple of Grasshopper Warbler, a Redstart, three Whitethroat and a good count of 22 Wheatear with a Yellow Wagtail, 25 Swallow, a Sand and a House Martin overhead. Elsewhere a Little and 20 Sandwich Tern were offshore with 55 Common Scoter, 12 Red-throated and four Great Northern Diver whilst counts from the estuary included 80 Dunlin, 22 Whimbrel, 18 Turnstone, 15 Sanderling, eight Ringed Plover and the Slavonian Grebe.

Whitethroat - Dave Jewell
Wildlife News: The first Wall Brown of the year were on the wing with Small Copper, Speckled Wood, Orange-tip, Green-veined White and Peacock also on the wing. A Harbour Porpoise was offshore.

Friday, 21 April 2017

Friday 21st April

Another quiet day but a Grasshopper Warbler reeled briefly in Greenland Lake early evening with four Wheatear, three Willow Warbler and a Whitethroat the other migrants noted. Elsewhere the pair of Little Grebe continued to feed their three young, 17 Sanderling were on the beach and a Cirl Bunting was singing along the Back Path.

Stonechat - Dave Jewell

Thursday, 20 April 2017

Thursday 20th April

Little sign of any migration today but there are now two Whitethroat in Greenland Lake and 11 Whimbrel were on the mudflats. Elsewhere the first five Manx Shearwater of the year were offshore in the evening and the Slavonian Grebe was off Cockwood.

Whimbrel - Dean Hall

Wednesday 19th April

A much quieter day with many of yesterdays birds having moved through. Sightings included a male Redstart in the Entrance Bushes, five Wheatear, three Willow Warbler and a Whitethroat.

Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Tuesday 18th April

The first decent fall of Spring was headlined by two reeling Grasshopper Warbler and a site record five Redstart. Other arrivals included 20+ Willow Warbler, 15+ Wheatear and a Whitethroat but passage overhead was limited to just 10 Swallow. Elsewhere 49 Pale-bellied Brent were in the estuary with 136 Dunlin, 73 Ringed Plover and 15 Sandwich Tern.

Wheatear - Dean Hall

Monday, 17 April 2017

Monday 17th April

The first Redstart of the year, a male, was seen briefly around Dead Dolphin Wood during the morning and was reported later around the Main Pond. Other migrants included 13 Wheatear and six Willow Warbler with just five Swallow flying through. Elsewhere 10 Great Northern Diver and 26 Sandwich Tern were offshore, over 50 Whimbrel flew north and counts from the estuary included 101 Ringed Plover, 46 Dunlin, 20+ Turnstone and three Sanderling.

Wildlife News: A Green-winged Orchid remains in flower in Greenland Lake, the only plant in the Recording Area. The species seemingly lost from two other locations on site.

Green-winged Orchid - Alan Keatley

Saturday, 15 April 2017

Saturday 15th April

Spring continues to arrive with a struggle with two Reed Warbler singing from the Main Pond, with 10 Wheatear and a couple of Willow Warbler the only other grounded migrants. Overhead the first House Martin and three Stock Dove of the year passed through with a dozen Swallow and a Sand Martin. Elsewhere counts from the estuary included 86 Ringed Plover, 41 Dunlin, 11 Sanderling, seven Whimbrel and a Grey Plover, a Snipe was on the Main Pond and a Little Tern and three Great Northern Diver were offshore.

Friday, 14 April 2017

Friday 14th April

Despite the calm conditions most of the interest was offshore with the first two Velvet Scoter of the year circling the bay early morning before heading south and later four unseasonal Balearic Shearwater headed south, another annual first. Also offshore three Great Northern and a Red-throated Diver, three diver sp, eight Sandwich Tern and 10 Common Scoter. Elsewhere six Wheatear and two Willow Warbler were on site, 111 Ringed Plover and 44 Dunlin were in the Bight and the Slavonian Grebe was off Cockwood.

Ringed Plover - Alan Keatley

Thursday, 13 April 2017

Thursday 13th April

The first two Common Tern of the year were offshore this morning with three Great Northern Diver and two first summer Mediterranean Gull. Counts from the estuary included 109 Ringed Plover, 71 Dunlin, 25 Turnstone, 17 Sanderling, eight Whimbrel and seven Sandwich Tern. Elsewhere 10 Wheatear included two Greenland race birds and four Swallow and a Sand Martin flew through.

 Dunlin - Alan Keatley
Skylark - Dave Jewell

Wednesday, 12 April 2017

Wednesday 12th April

Migration was in evidence over the evening tide with 102 Ringed Plover in the Bight along with 35 Grey Plover, 10 Dunlin and 10 Sanderling. Elsewhere a Great Northern Diver was offshore, three Wheatear were on site and a Snipe was on the Main Pond.

Wheatear - Dean Hall

Monday, 10 April 2017

Monday 10th April

The first Osprey of the year passed over mid morning with at least 16 Wheatear on site but other migrants remained at a premium with just a single Willow Warbler in the bushes and eight Swallow and four Sand Martin overhead. Elsewhere 45 Turnstone, 19 Ringed Plover and eight Whimbrel were in the estuary, eight Sandwich Tern and three Red-breasted Merganser were offshore and three Little Grebe chicks remain on the Main Pond.

 Little Grebe - Simon Thurgood

Wheatear - Simon Thurgood

Sunday, 9 April 2017

Sunday 9th April

A Red Kite that headed north over the site mid morning was taking advantage of the warm and clear conditions. However this same weather meant a dearth of grounded migrants with a single Sedge Warbler that spent the day in a bramble on the Wryneck Plain the only noticeable arrival. Elsewhere two Yellow Wagtail, 12 Swallow and a Sand Martin were also overhead, 10 Pale-bellied Brent Geese, 38 Bar-tailed Godwit, seven Whimbrel and five Sanderling were in the estuary and a first summer Iceland Gull was off John's Watch this evening with 11 Sandwich Tern and a first summer Mediterranean Gull.

Wildlife News: Sand Crocus and Upright Chickweed continue to flower in both Greenland Lake and the Crocus compound, six species of butterfly were on the wing and Striped Millipede are now to be found on areas of bare sand.

Striped Millipede - Mick Spencer

Saturday, 8 April 2017

Saturday 8th April

An early Yellow Wagtail overhead this morning was the pick of the few migrants on offer with 11 Swallow, five Blackcap, a Willow Warbler and a Wheatear also recorded. Elsewhere a Purple Sandpiper on the seawall was the first of the year, 15 Pale-bellied Brent Geese, five Sandwich Tern and a Whimbrel were in the estuary and a pair of Pintail offshore were the days third addition to the year list.

Purple Sandpiper - Lee Collins

Thursday, 6 April 2017

Thursday 6th April

A continuing trickle of migrants with a couple of Willow Warbler and five Swallow new arrivals. Other records included now three Little Grebe on the Main Pond, two Jay on Dead Dolphin Wood, two Whimbrel in the estuary and seven Sandwich Tern offshore.

Wildlife News: The first Green-veined White and Small Copper of the year were on the wing with at least a dozen Speckled Wood.

 Green-veined White - Alan Keatley

Speckled Wood - Alan Keatley

Wednesday, 5 April 2017

Wednesday 5th April

A look from Cockwood Steps early evening saw 82 Turnstone, seven Dunlin, four Ringed Plover, three Bar-tailed Godwit and a Whimbrel on the mudflats and a Slavonian Grebe in the estuary channel. Elsewhere a Willow Warbler was on site with two Blackcap and two Chiffchaff and a Red-throated Diver and six Sandwich Tern were offshore.

Linnet - Dave Jewell

Tuesday, 4 April 2017

Tuesday 4th April

Slim pickings on a low tide today with five Sandwich Tern in the estuary, with another eight offshore. Elsewhere a Water Rail remains on the Main Pond, four Shelduck were in front of the hide and three Great-crested Grebe were offshore.

Stonechat - Dean Hall

Wildlife News: The continuing good weather is provide ideal conditions for viewing the Warren Crocus.

Monday, 3 April 2017

Monday 3rd April

Three Willow Warbler were singing on site this morning with three Wheatear and a couple of Sand Martin over the pick of the other migrants. Elsewhere a Great Northern Diver and seven Sandwich Tern were offshore, 37 Bar-tailed Godwit were in the estuary and a Jay was in the Entrance Bushes.

Wildlife News: Sand Crocus remains in flower. 


Sunday, 2 April 2017

Sunday 2nd April

Migrants were again thin on the ground with four Sand Martin and four Swallow overhead and just a single Wheatear on the ground. In the estuary the Slavonian Grebe was still present with 307 Oystercatcher, 190 Curlew, 64 Knot, 60 Grey Plover, 26 Redshank, 12 Sandwich Tern, 10 Brent Geese and two Greenshank. Elsewhere two Red-throated Diver and 12 Common Scoter, a Jay was in the Entrance Bushes and a Snipe was on the Main Pond.

Wildlife News: Two Dark-edged Beefly were seen today along with Buffish and Short-fringed Mining Bee (Andrena nigroaenea & A. dorsata) with five butterfly species on the wing included a female Brimstone and the first two Orange-tip of the year. The Sand Crocus remains in flower with large numbers in both Greenland Lake and the Crocus Compound.

 Dark-edged Beefly - Debs Rylands

Buffish Mining Bee - Debs Rylands

Saturday, 1 April 2017

Saturday 1st April

Migrants continue to trickle through with three Blackcap, a couple of Wheatear and two Swallow seen today but the year's first Coal Tit was the most notable. Elsewhere two Whimbrel were in the estuary with 88 Turnstone, 71 Knot, 70 Grey Plover, 30 Bar-tailed Godwit, now just 10 Brent Geese and two Greenshank; three Red-throated Diver and seven Sandwich Tern were offshore and a Snipe was on the Main Pond.

Friday, 31 March 2017

Friday 31st March

Two Wheatear on Warren Point and a Blackcap in the Entrance Bushes were the only new migrants on site. Elsewhere the two Slavonian Grebe were in the estuary with 82 Curlew, 64 Knot, 54 Grey Plover and a Whimbrel with 10 Sandwich Tern also present. There was no sign of the Jack Snipe on the Main Pond but a single Snipe was still present.

Thursday, 30 March 2017

Thursday 30th March

The first Willow Warbler of the year was singing in the Entrance Bushes this morning, but the only other fresh passerine migrant was a single Wheatear on Warren Point. In the estuary migration was more obvious with counts included 96 Grey Plover, 56 Knot, 48 Dunlin, 18 Bar-tailed Godwit, 11 Sanderling, four Sandwich Tern and a Whimbrel. Elsewhere the Jack Snipe continues to attract visitors to the Main Pond.

Whimbrel - Alan Keatley

Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Tuesday 28th March

Counts from the estuary included 75 Curlew, 56 Grey Plover, 36 Turnstone, 35 Brent Geese, 16 Sanderling, nine Dunlin, seven Sandwich Tern, two Bar-tailed Godwit, two Knot and a Greenshank. Elsewhere the Jack Snipe was still on the Main Pond, two Swallow flew through, two Wheatear were onsite and two Jackdaw were overhead.

Monday, 27 March 2017

Monday 27th March

The Jack Snipe continues to be regular feature around the Main Pond, with the two Slavonian Grebe off Cockwood also still present. Elsewhere a pair of Cirl Bunting were near the Visitor Centre, 40 Curlew, 38 Brent Geese, 30 Redshank, 30 Turnstone and a Bar-tailed Godwit were from the hide and an Eider and six Brent Geese were reported offshore.

Jack Snipe - Dean Hall
Wildlife News: The first Speckled Wood of the year was in Dead Dolphin Wood.

Sunday, 26 March 2017

Sunday 26th March

The Jack Snipe remains on the Main Pond with at least one Snipe and Water Rail also occasionally on show.

Saturday, 25 March 2017

Saturday 25th March

The 18th site record of Egyptian Goose, the first since Feb 2012, flew north over the spit mid morning with other migrants including the first two Kestrel of the year both heading north and, from further afield, the first Swallow of 2017.  Elsewhere the Jack Snipe was on the Main Pond, two Slavonian Grebe were off Cockwood, a Wheatear was in Greenland Lake, a Blackcap was singing in Dead Dolphin Wood and a dozen Meadow Pipit and a Siskin were overhead.

Jack Snipe - Alan Keatley

Wheatear - Simon Thurgood
Wildlife News: In the sunny conditions the Sand Crocus was out in flower around the Crocus compound and Greenland Lake. The same conditions also brought out several Comma and Peacock butterflies and four bumblebee species: Buff-tailed, Red-tailed, Common Carder and Tree - the latter a long-awaited first for the recording area.

 Sand Crocus - Alan Keatley

Tree Bumblebee - Alan Keatley

Friday, 24 March 2017

Friday 24th March

The first Whimbrel of the year was on the mudflats this evening with 45+ Turnstone, four Greenshank and three Knot. Also in the estuary 'Herbert' the resident Slavonian Grebe

Thursday, 23 March 2017

Thursday 23rd March

The day started dull, cold and dry, later turning wet and the birding was not much better. The Jack Snipe did however remain on the Main Pond, with five Chiffchaff on site. Elsewhere a tight flock of 88 Turnstone in the estuary were presumably migrants, a Great Northern Diver was offshore and the two Slavonian Grebe and a Greenshank off Cockwood.

Jack Snipe - Alan Keatley

Wednesday, 22 March 2017

Wednesday 22nd March

The Jack Snipe remained on the Main Pond early afternoon with at least 10 Chiffchaff on site. Elsewhere a Sandwich Tern, a Slavonian Grebe and two Great Northern Diver were offshore the only other news received.

Wildlife News: The flowers of Sand Crocus made another appearance today but a sunny day will be required before they fully open.

Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Tuesday 21st March

The first Blackcap of the year was singing in the Entrance Bushes with five Sandwich Tern offshore the only other summer migrants. Counts from the hide included 300 Oystercatcher, 55 Curlew, 32 Turnstone and 14 Brent Geese with the majority of waders and wildfowl having left the estuary. Elsewhere the Jack Snipe was still on the Main Pond, the two Slavonian Grebe were off Cockwood and an Eider was offshore. Contrary to reports the Velvet Scoter were not off the Warren but remained off Dawlish.

Snipe - Dave Jewell

Monday, 20 March 2017

Monday 20th March

A Greenshank was in the estuary with a Bar-tailed Godwit and half a dozen Red-breasted Merganser.

Sunday, 19 March 2017

Sunday 19th March

A Jack Snipe showed on the Main Pond, but remained well hidden, also there three Water Rail, three Shoveler, two Snipe and two Teal. Elsewhere a single Sandwich Tern was off John's Watch with two Great Northern and two Red-throated Diver, 19 Great-crested Grebe and five Common Scoter. Also offshore a flock of 10 Eider flew in from Dawlish, pausing briefly by Langstone Rock but the four Velvet Scoter remained stubbornly around Coryton Cove, Dawlish to the south of the Recording Area.

Jack Snipe - Dave Jewell
Wildlife News: The first Sand Crocus of the year were in flower near the Visitor Centre, despite the early dat eand overcast conditions. A Harbour Porpoise was offshore.

Saturday, 18 March 2017

Saturday 18th March

A Sandwich Tern briefly in the estuary was the highlight on a quiet day, also from the hide 168 Curlew, 97 Dunlin, 60 Brent Geese, 38 Turnstone, 16 Red-breasted Merganser, two Bar and a Black-tailed Godwit. Elsewhere six Chiffchaff were on site and a Red-throated Diver and 50 Common Scoter were offshore.

Wednesday, 15 March 2017

Wednesday 15th March

A Wheatear and a couple of Chiffchaff were near the Main Pond, with a Jay nearby presumably a more local migrant. Counts from the estuary included 172 Brent Geese, 106 Curlew, 100+ Dunlin, 60 Grey Plover, 32 Turnstone, 21 Knot, 12 Red-breasted Merganser and three Sanderling. Elsewhere 40 Great-crested Grebe and six Common Scoter were offshore.
Wheatear - Dean Hall

Tuesday, 14 March 2017

Tuesday 14th March

The two Slavonian Grebe were in the estuary with c50 Common Gull and 12 Teal.

Monday, 13 March 2017

Monday 13th March

No sign of any Wheatear today, but a couple of Chiffchaff were in song around the Main Pond with four Shoveler still present. Elsewhere 250 Dunlin, 187 Brent Geese, 174 Curlew, 80 Grey Plover, 75 Knot, 32 Turnstone, seven Bar-tailed Godwit and three Sanderling were present over the early morning tide, numerous Skylark were singing high in the sky above Warren Point and 48 Great-crested Grebe were offshore.

Sunday, 12 March 2017

Sunday 12th March

The first Sandwich Tern of the year was offshore this evening, also on the sea with new site record 106 Great-crested Grebe and amongst the roosting gulls an immature Iceland and two adult Mediterranean Gull. Elsewhere three Sand Martin, also the first of the year, flew north past Warren Point, at least three Wheatear along the sea wall and 40 Redshank and a Greenshank in the estuary.

Saturday, 11 March 2017

Saturday 11th March

Spring continued to arrive with a single Wheatear by the hide, at least seven Chiffchaff around the site, a couple of migrant Song Thrush on the Point and a dozen each of Meadow Pipit and Lesser Black-backed Gull overhead. Elsewhere a first winter Little Gull, two Pale-bellied Brent Geese and two Slavonian Grebe were in the estuary, 14 Red-throated Diver and 25 Great-crested Grebe were on the sea with 965 Herring Gull and 145 Dark-bellied Brent Geese on sandbars offshore.

Wheatear - Alan Keatley
Wildlife News: The first Small Tortoiseshell of the year was along the Dune Ridge.

Friday, 10 March 2017

Friday 10th March

The only news received was of the first three Wheatear of the year around Langstone Rock early morning.

Thursday, 9 March 2017

Thursday 9th March

A glorious spring day but still no sign of the first summer migrant, however resident breeding species were in full song with Stonechat, Cirl Bunting and Linnet all to found around the remaining scrub, with both Green and Great-spotted Woodpecker also on site. Elsewhere a Red-throated Diver was offshore, two Slavonian Grebe were off Cockwood, three Shoveler were on the Main Pond  and two Jackdaw were overhead.

Wildlife News: The warm weather brought out good numbers of early insects with a Brimstone a good patch record, also the first Comma and Honey Bee of the year.

Brimstone - Alan Keatley

Comma - Alan Keatley

Honey Bee - Alan Keatley

Wednesday, 8 March 2017

Wednesday 8th March

A quick early morning visit failed to find the first Wheatear of spring or yesterday's Jack Snipe but three Shoveler and two Water Rail were on the Main Pond and the first Green Woodpecker of the year was in the Entrance Bushes.

Tuesday, 7 March 2017

Tuesday 7th March

A Jack Snipe on the Main Pond was the highlight on a quiet day, with a Common Snipe, a Water Rail and a pair of Shoveler also present. Elsewhere 22 Great-crested Grebe were off the seawall and on a low tide 80 Brent Geese were in the Bight.

Jack Snipe - Dean Hall

Sunday, 5 March 2017

Sunday 5th March

A change in the weather saw strong winds and heavy showers through the day. Offshore there were single Great Northern and Red-throated Diver, the two Slavonian Grebe were off Cockwood and five Shoveler, two Water Rail and a Snipe were on the Main Pond.

Saturday, 4 March 2017

Saturday 4th March

More signs of Spring today with six Mediterranean Gull on site (4ad, sw & fw) with 95+ Common Gull and an increase in Black-headed Gull. Counts from the estuary included 200+ Brent Geese, 158 Grey Plover, 134 Curlew, 104 Knot, 39 Turnstone, 14 Teal, 10 Ringed Plover, four Greenshank, two Wigeon, two Goldeneye, a Kingfisher and the Slavonian Grebe. Elsewhere two Red-throated and a Great Northern Diver, 12 Great-crested Grebe and an Eider were offshore.

Friday, 3 March 2017

Friday 3rd March

The two Slavonian Grebe were off Cockwood with five Goldeneye and 18 Red-breasted Merganser; other counts from the estuary included 210 Brent Geese, 115 Knot, 104 Grey Plover, 27 Bar-tailed Godwit, 23 Shelduck and two Greenshank. Elsewhere 11 Common Scoter, an Eider and a Great Northern Diver were offshore with five Shoveler, two Snipe and a Water Rail on the Main Pond.

Wildlife News: A Stoat was near the Entrance Bushes.

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Tuesday 28th February

Signs of Spring continue with a good count of 92 Common Gull in the estuary and small numbers of Lesser Black-backed Gull heading north overhead. Counts from the estuary included 760 Dunlin, 69 Grey Plover, 64 Knot, 43 Bar-tailed Godwit, 12 Sanderling and a Greenshank with 22 Great-crested Grebe and a Red-throated Diver offshore. Elsewhere the first two Pheasant on the year were sparring on the Golf Course, a Buzzard was overhead and a Cirl Bunting remains in song around the Buffer Zone.

Wildlife News: A Red Admiral was on the wing behind the Visitor Centre.

Saturday, 25 February 2017

Saturday 25th February

Offshore a Long-tailed Duck, 65 Common Scoter and two Red-throated Diver flew south with auks still going through but in lesser numbers than Thursday. Elsewhere 105 Common Gull were in the estuary, a noticeable increase, there was also a large gathering of Herring Gull feeding offshore in shallows but no white wingers amongst them.

Wildlife News: Early Meadow-grass is now out in flower. It can be found in areas of short well walked turf around the Buffer Zone, Back Path and Warren Point. The pale, washed out green colour is a useful aid to identification.

Early Meadow-grass - Alan Keatley

Thursday, 23 February 2017

Thursday 23rd February

As expected from a winter storm like Doris, there was a strong auk passage. During two 30 minute counts, between 8:00 and 8:30 from sea wall and 9:50 and 10:20 from John's Watch, an average of 180 per 30 minutes passed by. Most birds were too far out to identify to species, but between 1000-1500 birds must have passed during the morning. Also offshore 65 Gannet, 25 Kittiwake, 16 Fulmar, just two Red-throated Diver and a Common Scoter.

Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Tuesday 21st February

The very low high tide again saw few waders with 147 Oystercatcher, 23 Ringed Plover, 19 Turnstone, 10 Dunlin, eight Knot and two Redshank, also in the estuary 53 Brent Geese and two Red-breasted Merganser.

Sunday, 19 February 2017

Sunday 19th February

The February WeBS count today with low count off just 212 Oystercatcher, 100 Dunlin, 62 Brent Geese, 32 Grey Plover, 27 Knot, 23 Ringed Plover and 11 Bar-tailed Godwit. Elsewhere eight Great-crested Grebe and three Common Scoter were offshore and a Raven was overhead. The selection of WeBS count times before high tide on one of the lowest tides each month has seen a steady decline in WeBS wader totals at the Warren. Overall numbers on the estuary-wide count however are not being influenced by this choice of tide, with c3000 Dunlin reported from the north end of the estuary today.

Friday, 17 February 2017

Friday 17th February

Despite the date the warmer weather suggested Spring was already here; the reduction in wader and wildfowl numbers and the increase in birdsong supported this impression. Offshore the flat calm conditions saw an increase in diver and grebe numbers with eight Red-throated and two Great Northern Diver and 23 Great-crested Grebe. counts from the estuary included 700 Dunlin, 128 Grey Plover, 64 Knot, 25 Sanderling and 16 Red-breasted Merganser. Elsewhere a Cirl Bunting was singing from the golf course, four Snipe and two Shoveler were on the Main Pond and three Goldcrest were in the Entrance Bushes.

Wednesday, 15 February 2017

Wednesday 15th February

The Bonaparte's Gull was again off Cockwood today with two Slavonian Grebe and a female Goldeneye with an near adult summer Mediterranean Gull also in the estuary. elsewhere a Great Northern Diver was off Warren Point, 15+ Great-crested Grebe and just four Common Scoter were offshore, a second Mediterranean Gull was off the seawall and two Shoveler and a Snipe were on the Main Pond.

Wildlife News: Two Harbour Seal were hauled out on Bull Hill

Sunday, 12 February 2017

Sunday 12th February

An adult Iceland Gull was off Langstone Rock late afternoon but no other news was received. Pictures at Devon Bird News

Saturday, 11 February 2017

Saturday 11th February

The two Slavonian Grebe and two Goldeneye were off Cockwood but no other news was received.

Wildlife News: A Common Seal was off Warren Point.

Thursday, 9 February 2017

Thursday 9th February

Different day, same birds despite the change to colder weather. In the estuary the Bonaparte's Gull appeared on cue at low tide in the main channel, with the two Slavonian Grebe close by. Elsewhere the first Jackdaw of the year was overhead, a Shoveler was on the Main Pond and there was little offshore with just single Red-throated Diver, Common Scoter and Eider.

Turnstone - Alan Keatley

Wednesday, 8 February 2017

Wednesday 8th February

The Bonaparte's Gull remains in the estuary being seen off Warren Point mid morning before flying towards Shelly Beach, Exmouth. Elsewhere a Great Northern Diver was offshore and the two Slavonian Grebe were off Cockwood.

Sunday, 5 February 2017

Sunday 5th February

The Bonaparte's Gull was in Shutterton Creek this afternoon with two Slavonian Grebe but no other news was received.

Saturday, 4 February 2017

Saturday 4th February

A benign morning weather-wise after the last couple of days but bird numbers offshore remain low. The site is almost deserted of Common Scoter and Great-crested Grebe at the moment with the main flocks further south, only four of each were present today; also offshore single Eider and Great Northern Diver. In the estuary the Bonaparte's Gull was still off Cockwood and counts included a site record 131 Shelduck.

Wildlife News: A Common Seal was hauled out on Warren Point this morning.

Common Seal - Alan Keatley

Thursday, 2 February 2017

Thursday 2nd February

As forecast strong gale force south/southeasterly winds throughout,  with showers for the first two hours then dry. Sea watching from sea wall for 45 minutes from dawn saw six Long-tailed Duck heading south, presumably the birds from Labrador Bay, with 30 Gannet and seven Kittiwake; a later watch at 13:00 did not produce anything. The big high tide saw large numbers of waders roosting with counts of 243 Grey Plover, 144 Knot, 31 Sanderling, 26 Turnstone but just four Bar-tailed Godwit. Also in the estuary 114 Brent Geese, 89 Shelduck, a Goldeneye and an adult Mediterranean Gull with Herbert, the Slavonian Grebe, in the Bight.

Tuesday, 31 January 2017

Tuesday 31st January

The Slavonian Grebe was from the hide with counts of 1000+ Dunlin, 200 Brent Geese, 181 Grey Plover, 87 Knot, 63 Shelduck, 23 Turnstone and a Greenshank with 13 Skylark and three Rock Pipit in the Bight. Elsewhere eight Moorhen, three Shoveler and the Gadwall were on the Main Pond and an Eider was reported off John's Watch although visibility was again too poor for a decent scan offshore.

Monday, 30 January 2017

Monday 30th January

Counts from the estuary included 145 Grey Plover, 68 Bar-tailed Godwit, 54 Curlew, 50+ Knot and a Slavonian Grebe. Elsewhere the female Gadwall, two pairs of Shoveler, a Little Grebe and a Snipe were on the Main Pond but fog prevented any sightings offshore.

Song Thrush - Dean Hall

Sunday, 29 January 2017

Sunday 29th January

The Bonaparte's Gull and two Slavonian Grebe were again off Cockwood mid morning. Other records before the rain arrived included 160 Knot, 153 Grey Plover and just 33 Bar-tailed Godwit.    

Saturday, 28 January 2017

Saturday 28th January

The Bonaparte's Gull put in another brief appearance in the estuary early afternoon, along with two Slavonian Grebe, 128 Grey Plover, 60 Turnstone, 28 Sanderling, a Greenshank and the first Lapwing and Black-tailed Godwit of 2017.  Elsewhere two Red-throated Diver were offshore, single Raven and Rook were overhead, two Siskin were briefly in Dead Dolphin Wood and a Snipe, two Chiffchaff, two Shoveler and the Gadwall were at the Main Pond.

 Bullfinch - Alan Keatley

Goldcrest - Alan Keatley

Thursday, 26 January 2017

Thursday 26th January

A combination of a stiff onshore south easterlies, choppy sea and low tide during the day reduced the species list. The was very little offshore, but the Bonaparte's Gull was in the estuary channel between the Bight and Bull Hill mid morning.  It is becoming more regular and reliable feeding in the channel on a receding or low tide. Also in the estuary the two Slavonian Grebe, 244 Brent Goose, 115 Teal, 69 Shelduck and a Greenshank with five Shoveler and the female Gadwall on the Main Pond.

Wednesday, 25 January 2017

Wednesday 25th January

The Bonaparte's Gull and two Slavonian Grebe were in the estuary off Cockwood Steps late morning and the first reported Kingfisher of the year was in the Main Pond but no other news was received.

Tuesday, 24 January 2017

Tuesday 24th January

Thick fog failed to lift today but the Black-necked Grebe was visible offshore with a few Great-crested Grebe, four Common Scoter and 10 Guillemot.

Wildlife News: Late news of an Otter captured by Teignbridge on a trail camera at the Main Pond on an unknown date, only the second record for the recording area, the first an old record of a tideline corpse.

Monday, 23 January 2017

Monday 23rd January

In foggy conditions five Red-throated Diver, 41 Great-crested Grebe and five Common Scoter were offshore with 13 Red-breasted Merganser and two Slavonian Grebe in the estuary.

Sunday, 22 January 2017

Sunday 22nd January

A new Slavonian Grebe offshore was the only noticeable arrival today, also offshore the Black-necked Grebe and eight Red-throated Diver. In the estuary the two regular Slavonian Grebe, the Bonaparte's Gull appeared briefly mid morning before heading towards Exmouth and counts included 458 Teal and 139 Wigeon, the low high tide meant wader counts were very low for WeBS with only Oystercatcher reaching three figures. Elsewhere the Yellow-browed Warbler and five Chiffchaff were mobile around the First and Main Pond, with five Shoveler, a female Gadwall and a female Wigeon on the Main Pond.

 Yellow-browed Warbler - Dave Smallshire

Cirl Bunting (female) - Dave Smallshire

Wildlife News: A Peacock butterfly was in the Back Meadow.

Saturday, 21 January 2017

Saturday 21st January

The wintering Yellow-browed Warbler was again by the Main Pond with four Shoveler and the female Gadwall still present on the pond. No other records were received with choppy conditions offshore and a low high tide.

Thursday, 19 January 2017

Thursday 19th January

A frosty start with pockets of ice on Main Pond, where the Yellow-browed Warbler and a single Chiffchaff were busily hunting for food as it thawed; also in the bushes the first Jay of the year, a rare January record. Counts from the estuary were reduced due to the low high tide but 820 Dunlin, 158 Grey Plover and 45 Knot were seen from the hide along with 68 Brent Geese. Elsewhere five Red-throated Diver and 38 Great-crested Grebe were offshore and a single Raven overhead was another first for the year.

Tuesday, 17 January 2017

Tuesday 17th January

Aside from a pair of Shoveler in the estuary the only news came from the seawall where 21 Red-throated Diver flew south between 9.20 & 10am with four Eider, the Black-necked and 52 Great-crested Grebe on the sea.

Wildlife News: At least one Harbour Porpoise was still offshore.

Monday, 16 January 2017

Monday 16th January

The Bonaparte's Gull put in another late afternoon appearance in the estuary from Cockwood Steps, with two Slavonian Grebe and a Goldeneye also there. Counts from the hide included 183 Grey Plover, 138 Curlew, 84 Shelduck and 71 Knot. Elsewhere the Yellow-browed Warbler was behind the Main Pond and the Black-necked Grebe was offshore with four Eider, four Red-throated and two Great Northern Diver.

Wildlife News: At least three Harbour Porpoise were still off the seawall.

Sunday, 15 January 2017

Sunday 15th January

Seawatching for an hour early morning saw a heavy auk passage south with 1600+ birds, of which the vast majority of those identified were Razorbill, also heading south 10 Red-throated and four Great Northern Diver, 72 Gannet and c40 Kittiwake. Later on the Black-necked Grebe was still off the seawall with 41 Great-crested Grebe and four Eider.  

In the estuary counts included 174 Brent Geese, 103 Bar-tailed Godwit, 76 Shelduck, a winter high of 33 Sanderling, two Greenshank, two Goldeneye and the two Slavonian Grebe. The Bonaparte's Gull was also still present feeding in the estuary channel on the dropping tide from 12.30-15.30 at least before heading offshore.

Elsewhere the Yellow-browed Warbler was again behind the Main Pond, where a Gadwall and three Shoveler remain and six Pale-bellied Brent Geese were on offshore sandbars this evening.

Wildlife News: Four Harbour Porpoise were off the seawall.

Saturday, 14 January 2017

Saturday 14th January

Despite the recent cold weather little change with both wintering rarities still present. The Yellow-browed Warbler behind the Main Pond and the Bonaparte's Gull, which showed well in the estuary channel on the dropping tide. Elsewhere the Black-necked Grebe was still offshore with four Eider, 48 Great-crested Grebe, nine Red-throated Diver and a drake Gadwall; the two Slavonian Grebe were in the estuary with 145 Brent Geese and 55 Shelduck; and the female Gadwall remains on the Main Pond.

 Bullfinch - Simon Thurgood

Long-tailed Tit - Simon Thurgood

Friday, 13 January 2017

Friday 13th January

No news from the site today but the Bonaparte's Gull was feeding offshore with Black-headed Gull late afternoon, viewed from Exmouth. Outside the recording area Eastdon produced another rarity with a Yellow-browed Warbler reported feeding in the ditch alongside the cycle path.

Thursday, 12 January 2017

Thursday 12th January

A Black-necked Grebe was off the seawall early morning with three Red-throated Diver and two Eider whilst 55 Gannet and 25 Kittiwake headed south. Elsewhere two Slavonian Grebe were in the estuary, the female Gadwall and two Shoveler were on the Main Pond and the Yellow-browed Warbler showed well near there before the rain arrived.

Wednesday, 11 January 2017

Wednesday 11th January

No news from the recording area since the weekend, but 12 Waxwing were found today just offsite. They were feeding on rosehips and privet berries near Eastdon Farm just south of Cockwood and were easily visible from the cycle path. One of the birds was colour-ringed just two days ago at Builth Wells in mid Wales. It was in a flock of 13 birds then, so one has been lost in the intervening couple of days.

Sunday, 8 January 2017

Sunday 8th January

Flat calm conditions offshore revealed a new site record of 92 Great-crested Grebe; also offshore 13 Red-throated Diver, just 13 Common Scoter, three Eider and the Bonaparte's Gull. Elsewhere the Yellow-browed Warbler was still around the Main Pond and counts from the estuary included 1244 Oystercatcher and 1035 Dunlin but other species were in short supply on the low high tide with just nine Curlew, seven Bar-tailed Godwit and three Knot.

Saturday, 7 January 2017

Saturday 7th January

Offshore there were 13 Red-throated Diver, 42 Great-crested Grebe and four Eider with five Long-tailed Duck flying south towards Dawlish. Elsewhere the Yellow-browed Warbler was by the Main Pond, a Slavonian Grebe and an adult Mediterranean Gull were in the estuary and a Gadwall and five Shoveler were on the Main Pond.

Wildlife News: A Peacock butterfly along the Back Path was surprising considering the dull weather.

Friday, 6 January 2017

Friday 6th January

The Yellow-browed Warbler was by the Main Pond this morning but no other news was received.

Thursday, 5 January 2017

Thursday 5th January

The Bonaparte's Gull was in the estuary off Warren Point mid morning, with other records from the estuary including 117 Brent Geese, 117 Grey Plover and a Goldeneye. Elsewhere three Red-throated Diver and 25 Great-crested Grebe were offshore and three Shoveler and a Snipe were on the Main Pond.

Wednesday, 4 January 2017

Wednesday 4th January

No sign of the Bonaparte's Gull or Yellow-browed Warbler today but five Eider, six Red-throated Diver and 18 Common Scoter were offshore, four Shoveler were on the Main Pond and the two Slavonian Grebe were in the estuary with 72 Grey Plover and 41 Shelduck.

Tuesday, 3 January 2017

Tuesday 3rd January

A frosty start to the day with little change on the bird front. The Bonaparte's Gull was in front of the hide briefly on the dropping tide mid morning with a new Polish ringed Dunlin, 163 Grey Plover and 67+ Bar-tailed Godwit also in the estuary. Elsewhere the Yellow-browed Warbler was again in the Entrance Bushes with 32 Great-crested Grebe, four Red-throated Diver and an Eider offshore.

Bonaparte's Gull - Lee Collins