Tuesday 15 September 2020

Tuesday 15th September

High cloud cover and clement conditions saw a step-change in 'vis-mig', but encumbered by low elevation at this site, observers could only speculate as to the identity of many dots that passed many hundreds of metres overhead. Ambient noise is another issue at Dawlish Warren and can be so unpleasant as to force birders off the site. Resilience was rewarded with an Osprey high south; the first Lesser Redpoll of the year; the autumn's first Chaffinch and Tree Pipit; also 25+ Meadow Pipit (many more likely at altitude), eight Swallow, two Grey Wagtail, two Grey Heron high south and a Rook.

In the bushes six Chiffchaff, four Blackcap and a Whitethroat, plus the expected notable residents - the pair of Collared Dove, two Great Spotted Woodpecker, and a Bullfinch, and irregular visitors from the mainland - a Coal Tit and a Green Woodpecker. Around Greenland Lake (Note to new readers: it's not a lake) the finch flock grew again to hold 67 Goldfinch and seven Greenfinch. Also three Cirl Bunting. In the evening as the last golfers departed, 80+ Linnet, a dozen Pied Wagtail, a Wheatear and a brighty-coloured male Yellow Wagtail foraged the 6th and 7th fairways; then towards dusk, 70 Starling descended to roost in the adjacent Golf Course Pond sallows.

Offshore just a few Gannet and a Great Crested Grebe.

The evening tide saw in the estuary corner 85 Wigeon and 79 Teal; three Snipe lifted from the golf course saltmarsh; the Railway Saltmarsh supported a three-figure count of Redshank, 210 Curlew, 12 Little Egret, four adult Mediterranean Gull, two Greenshank, a Common Gull and another Grey Heron; also in the estuary 25 Mute Swan and the resident Slavonian Grebe.  On the wader island posts stood six Sandwich Tern, and elsewhere, particularly around The Bight and along the beach were most of the 760+ Oystercatcher, 240+ Dunlin, 125 Ringed Plover, 116 Black-headed Gull, 60+ Knot, 27 Sanderling, 22 Great Black-backed Gull, 21 Bar-tailed Godwit, six Turnstone, three Little Stint, a Whimbrel also the Common Scoter roosted on Finger Point.

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