Monday 31 October 2016

Monday 31st October

Counts from the estuary included 753 Wigeon, 415 Teal, 73 Brent Geese, 60 Knot, two Greenshank, a Mediterranean Gull and the Slavonian Grebe. Elsewhere 36 Chaffinch and 11 Jackdaw passed overhead, 10 Chiffchaff were on site and 54 Common Scoter were offshore.

Wildlife News: With the summer weather and temperatures it was no surprise to see a few late insects on the wing with a couple of migrant Rush Veneer and five Red Admiral along with Peacock, Small Copper and a couple of Common Darter. Elsewhere a Grey Seal was on Bull Hill.

Peacock - Alan Keatley

Sunday 30 October 2016

Sunday 30th October

A quieter day on site with a Dartford Warbler on the Golf Course and a brief presumed Northern Wheatear at first light the pick of the sightings. Elsewhere c120 Common Scoter and two Eider were offshore with 1530 Herring Gull feeding on the sandbars at low tide and counts from the estuary including c800 Dunlin, 71 Grey and 20 Ringed Plover, 46 Knot, six Red-breasted Merganser and three Mediterranean Gull.

Saturday 29 October 2016

Saturday 29th October

The Bonaparte's Gull made one of it's increasingly erratic appearances, sat on the 2nd groyne early morning before heading out in to the bay, also offshore three Great Northern and a Red-throated Diver, 76 Common Scoter and the two Eider. Records from the estuary included a Purple Sandpiper on Finger Point, a Curlew Sandpiper with 415 Dunlin, the latest record since 2000; 328 Brent Geese, 70 Grey Plover and the Slavonian Grebe.

Overhead it was relatively quiet until 11am when an hour of passage saw the first Brambling if the year head NE with 278 Chaffinch and four Siskin. Elsewhere two Dartford Warbler were in Greenland Lake, a Snipe was on Warren Point and eight Stonechat, five Chiffchaff and two Blackcap were on site.

Thursday 27 October 2016

Thursday 27th October

A smart male Black Redstart was on the seawall early morning, the second this week, but the highlight was a grey goose sp that flew low north at day break, probably a young White-fronted Goose. Elsewhere 70 Goldfinch were on site, four Chiffchaff, three Blackcap and a Coal Tit were in the bushes and  61 Common Scoter were offshore.

Wednesday 26 October 2016

Wednesday 26th October

The two Eider were still offshore and large numbers of Goldfinch were on the move but no other news was received.

Tuesday 25 October 2016

Tuesday 25th October

The first Black Redstart of the autumn was briefly on the seawall this morning with an Eider offshore occasionally appearing out of the murk. The misty conditions remained for much of the day and limited overhead movement and scans of the estuary but two Short-eared Owl were found on Warren Point and six Chiffchaff, a Blackcap and a Siskin were in the Entrance Bushes.

Monday 24 October 2016

Monday 24th October

Heavy rain most of the day hampered birding opportunities but a couple of wet hours in the field did reveal four Pintail and the lone Eider offshore with 88 Dunlin, 85+ Great Black-backed Gull, 53 Grey and six Ringed Plover, two Mediterranean Gull and two Red-breasted Merganser in the estuary.

Sunday 23 October 2016

Sunday 23rd October

A Merlin heading across the bay towards Orcombe Point mid morning was the highlight as the strong easterly wind removed any chance of vismig with just 17 Goldfinch and four Chaffinch overhead. Counts from the estuary included 1827 Wigeon, 392 Curlew, 363 Teal, 96 Brent Geese, 45 Dunlin, 21 Common Gull, a noticeable increase, 16 Shelduck, two Mediterranean Gull and the Slavonian Grebe. Elsewhere the Eider was off the seawall, a Buzzard was in the Entrance bushes with just three Chiffchaff and a Blackcap.

Saturday 22 October 2016

Saturday 22nd October

Counts from the estuary included 1420 Wigeon, 332 Curlew, 145+ Redshank, 97 Grey Plover, 58 Dunlin, 49 Knot, 33 Turnstone, three Mediterranean Gull, two Greenshank and two Snipe. Elsewhere the Eider and a Red-throated Diver were offshore, vismig included 118 Wood Pigeon, 22 Chaffinch, a Siskin, a Mistle Thrush and a late House Martin with four Chiffchaff, two Blackcap and a Coal Tit in the bushes.

Friday 21 October 2016

Friday 21st October

Counts from the estuary included 1514 Oystercatcher, 114 Dunlin, 91 Grey Plover, three Mediterranean Gull, two Snipe and two Greenshank. Elsewhere two Red-throated Diver were offshore with a Pintail amongst 45 Common Scoter and vismig was limited to 13 Chaffinch, a Siskin and a Swallow.

Turnstone & Sanderling - Greg Bradbury

Thursday 20 October 2016

Thursday 20th October

Counts from the estuary included 1070 Wigeon, 563 Teal, 254 Curlew, 195 Redshank, 86 Grey Plover, 70 Knot, 50 Dunlin, 15 Bar and seven Black-tailed Godwit, three Mediterranean Gull and a Red-breasted Merganser. Elsewhere an Eider and 56 Common Scoter were offshore and 'vis-mig' overhead included 67 Skylark, 53 Starling, 18 Chaffinch, three Siskin, three Swallow and a Redpoll.

Wildlife News: a gull perched on the promenade struggling with a Garfish was an unusual site.  A few Red Admiral continued to fly SW.

Wednesday 19 October 2016

Wednesday 19th October

The recording area's second Little Bunting flew over calling early morning but otherwise vismig was quieter with 106 Goldfinch, 38 alba Wagtail, 22 Meadow Pipit, 20 Jackdaw, nine Chaffinch, seven Rook, three Swallow and single Bullfinch, Siskin, Redpoll and Stock Dove.  Other migrants included an increase to nine Chiffchaff with eight Reed Bunting and a lone Wheatear also on site. Elsewhere an Eider was offshore, 24 Shelduck were in the Bight, a Kingfisher was on the Main Pond and two Snipe were on the beach and offshore sandbars, flying around with a Sanderling.

Tuesday 18 October 2016

Tuesday 18th October

The first Goosander of the year flew south off the seawall early morning along with a single Merlin, 40 Gannet and a dozen mixed Guillemot and Razorbill, also offshore a Black-necked Grebe, a Red-throated Diver in full summer plumage and 43 Common Scoter with 1815 Herring Gull at low tide. Elsewhere the Slavonian Grebe was in the estuary with 67 Knot, 61 Grey Plover, 12 Sanderling, three adult Mediterranean Gull and a Sandwich Tern. New migrants were limited to a single Wheatear in Greenland Lake with 130+ Goldfinch, six Swallow and three Redpoll overhead.

Long-tailed Tit - Alan Keatley

Monday 17 October 2016

Monday 17th October

A new site record of 3745 Wigeon were in Shutterton Creek with 492 Teal, 140 Brent Geese, three Red-breasted Merganser and a Pintail. Also in the estuary  240 Curlew, 222 Redshank, 41 Grey Plover, three Mediterranean Gull and a Greenshank. A Hawfinch heard overhead was the pick of this morning's vismig with 85+ Goldfinch, 60 Linnet, 28 alba wagtail, 20 Jackdaw, 16 Skylark, 15 Meadow Pipit, two Redpoll, a Siskin, a Swallow and a Redwing also passing through. Elsewhere 90 Pied Wagtail were in a pre-roost gathering on the golf course and 90 Linnet were in the Bight.

Sunday 16 October 2016

Sunday 16th October

Counts from the estuary included 95 Grey Plover, 62 Dunlin, 37 Turnstone, 12 Sanderling, five Red-breasted Merganser and the Slavonian Grebe. Also in the river a presumed Baltic Gull was on Bull Hill, with five other Lesser and 124 Great Black-backed Gull (two of which were Norwegian ringed). Elsewhere a Merlin flew along the Dune Ridge, two Eider, a Great Northern Diver and an Arctic Skua flew south offshore and a single Siskin was overhead.

Baltic Gull - Lee Collins

Saturday 15 October 2016

Saturday 15th October

A Curlew Sandpiper was in the Bight with 58 Dunlin and 16 Ringed Plover, with three Greenshank, three Black-tailed Godwit, two Pintail and a Common Tern in the estuary. Elsewhere two Coal Tit were in the Entrance Bushes and six Rook, six Jackdaw and a Buzzard were overhead.

Wildlife News: A late Meadow Brown was still on the wing with Migrant Hawker and Common Darter also still flying.

Thursday 13 October 2016

Thursday 13th October

Grounded migrants included 12 Chiffchaff, four Blackcap and a Greenland Wheatear, with 325 Goldfinch, 58 Siskin, 35 Meadow Pipit, 25 Swallow and four Redpoll overhead. Elsewhere wader counts from the estuary include 1294 Oystercatcher, 165 Redshank, 124 Dunlin, 82 Knot, 62 Grey Plover, four Greenshank and a Sanderling. Wildfowl number remain high with 1722 Wigeon, 693 Teal and 205 Brent Geese.

Wednesday 12 October 2016

Wednesday 12th October

The first Merlin and third Yellow-browed Warbler of the autumn were the highlights; the latter moved along the Dune Ridge calling as it went. Elsewhere migrants included eight Chiffchaff and five Blackcap around the scrub with 56 Goldfinch, 25 Swallow, 24 Meadow Pipit, 17 Siskin, seven Chaffinch and three Redpoll overhead. Counts from the estuary included 1970 Wigeon, 770 Teal, 207 Dark-bellied Brent Geese, 168 Redshank, 80 Knot, 32 Bar-tailed Godwit, two Sandwich Tern and single Osprey, Pale-bellied Brent, Greenshank and Dunlin.

Sunday 9 October 2016

Sunday 9th October

Counts from the estuary included 1720 Wigeon, 359 Teal, 892 Oystercatcher, 428 Curlew, 50 Knot, 23 Shelduck, 22 Bar and two Black-tailed Godwit, 19 Ringed Plover and just 16 Brent Geese and five Dunlin. Also present the first three Red-breasted Merganser of the winter, seven Pintail and a juvenile Osprey which caught a fish and flew off upriver. Elsewhere two Eider offshore were the first since 2014, vismig saw a Red Kite head north, 48 Lesser Black-backed Gull head south along with 128 Goldfinch, 36 Skylark, 35 Meadow Pipit, 15 Swallow, 12 House Martin, nine Rook, two Grey Wagtail and the first five Siskin of the autumn. Grounded migrants included 20 Chiffchaff, five Goldcrest, four Blackcap, four Wheatear and three Coal Tit.

Saturday 8 October 2016

Saturday 8th October

A calmer day saw visible passage pick up and a turn-over of passerines pausing on site before heading on, with counts of 90+ Linnet, 54 Meadow Pipit, 58+ Goldfinch, c.30 Pied Wagtail, 30 Chaffinch, 20 Skylark, 17 House Martin, 12 Rook, eight Song Thrush (highest count since Jan), three Jackdaw, two Grey Wagtail, two Lesser Redpoll (first of the autumn) and single Raven, Swallow and a Bullfinch.  The clear highlight was a Turtle Dove that flew NE low of the tree-tops at 09:10. the first on site since Apr 2014 and for one regular observer, his first in 11 years! 

On the estuary, during the neap tide, 1489 Oystercatcher, 269 Redshank, 243 Curlew, 60 Knot, 29 Dunlin, 27 Ringed Plover, 23 Cormorant including a sinensis; 21 Shelduck, 16 Turnstone, 14 Bar-tailed Godwit, seven Sandwich Tern, six Sanderling, five Black-tailed Godwit, three Kingfisher, two Mediterranean Gull, a Whimbrel, a Greenshank and the Slavonian Grebe.  In the estuary corner, 909 Teal was the highest congregation since Dec 2010.  The three jet-skiers who disturbed these and all other waterbirds there were later intercepted and politely made aware of their error.  More natural disturbance was caused by an Osprey that drifted down channel late morning then headed back up the estuary. 

Little at sea, 51 Common Scoter and two Grey Plover in off.  The bushes held 17 Chiffchaff, 11 Blackcap,  three Goldcrest, one or two each of Great Spotted Woodpecker, Green Woodpecker, Jay, Wheatear, Cirl Bunting and a Whitethroat, the latest date since 2010.

Wildlife News: Red Admiral and numerous Small Copper still on the wing.  Sand Lizards were also seen out.

Friday 7 October 2016

Friday 7th October

Counts from the estuary included 348 Dunlin, 69 Grey and 41 Ringed Plover, 51 Knot, 42 Bar and two Black-tailed Godwit, 22 Turnstone and two Greenshank. Elsewhere a Wheatear was on the beach and 13 Swallow flew through.

Thursday 6 October 2016

Thursday 6th October

A Yellow-browed Warbler briefly by the First Pond was almost to be expected considering the national influx but unfortunately it didn't linger. Other migrants were limited to eight Chiffchaff, two Blackcap and a Goldcrest. In the estuary an Osprey flew over towards Exmouth with counts of 410 Dunlin, 58 Grey and 45 Ringed Plover, 12 Shelduck and six Pintail. Elsewhere 60 Common Scoter and two skua sp were offshore, four Raven were overhead and a Jay remains in Dead Dolphin Wood.

Tuesday 4 October 2016

Tuesday 4th October

The highlight was a Snow Bunting that flew along the Dune Ridge mid morning, before being relocated in the Bight an hour later. Also in the Bight two Curlew Sandpiper, 409 Dunlin, 91 Brent Geese, 73 Grey and 47 Ringed Plover and 14 Sanderling. Overhead there were 70 House and two Sand Martin.

Monday 3 October 2016

Monday 3rd October

A clear, still start was soon interrupted by a fresh onshore breeze that persisted all day and evaporated passage overhead to reduce counts to 52 Swallow, 35 Meadow Pipit, 18 Pied Wagtail, five Grey Wagtail and three Jackdaw.   

Selected counts during the spring tide in The Bight were 324 Dunlin, 67 Grey Plover, 60 Ringed Plover, eight Sanderling, three Knot and a Curlew Sandpiper.  Also in the estuary or at sea, six Pintail, four Sandwich Tern, three Shelduck a Mediterranean Gull and an Arctic Tern

Blown out, among the bushes were found only a few Chiffchaff, also seven Greenfinch, three Blackcap, two Goldcrest, two Song Thrush and a Jay

Sunday 2 October 2016

Sunday 2nd October

A chilly start developed into a gloriously sunny and near cloudless day. Over the high tides, selected counts and estimates were 1400+ Wigeon, 4-figure count of Oystercatcher, 510 Dunlin, 3-figure counts Teal and Curlew, 259 Redshank, 80 Grey Plover, 80 Black-headed Gull, 45 Ringed Plover, 44 Dark-bellied Brent Goose, 30+ Knot, 23 Turnstone, 16+ Bar-tailed Godwit, eight Sanderling, three juv Curlew Sandpiper, three Sandwich Tern, two Mediterranean Gull and a Greenshank.  Small waders were decidedly skittish with the presence of two Sparrowhawk and Peregrine, the latter departed with prey. 

The Bight still held 92 Linnet and a Rook landed on the wader island at dusk.  The raft of 37 Common Scoter was the only notable sighting at sea. 

High hopes for overhead passage were too high for our sea-level observations with only 25+ Meadow Pipit,12 Swallow, two Siskin, two Stock Dove and a House Martin through.  An all day total of 51 Lesser Black-backed Gull south was the highlight. 

From their roost in the Italian Alders of the car park departed 78 House Sparrow.  Elsewhere in bushes and dunes, 20+ Goldfinch, 12 Skylark, 12 Chiffchaff, eight Stonechat, four Wheatear, four Greenfinch, three Reed Bunting, two each of Jay, Goldcrest and Blackcap, a Coal Tit and a late Garden Warbler

Wildlife News: thanks to two curious and responsible dog-walkers, the position of a large moth in the dunes was marked, enabling it to be re-found and identified as a Convolvulus Hawk-moth (photo on Twitter post)

Saturday 1 October 2016

Saturday 1st October

Totals from the morning and evening high tides were c.1910 Wigeon, the Oystercatcher roost, 374 Dunlin, 237 Curlew, 226 Redshank, 217 Teal, 173 Black-headed Gull with 19 Common Gull and two adult Mediterranean Gull; also 135 Dark-bellied Brent Goose, 90 Ringed Plover, 43 Grey Plover, 36 Knot, 14 Bar-tailed Godwit, 10 Turnstone, seven Pintail, five Common Tern, single figures of Sanderling, a juv Curlew Sandpiper and single late Whimbrel and Common Sandpiper. A large, though reduced flock of Linnet remained in The Bight.

At sea, a raft of 28 Common Scoter, 25+ Gannet, 6 Sandwich Tern and five auk flew south. The summer-plumaged Red-throated Diver was again offshore and a Storm Petrel was glimpsed foraging far out.

Present for its seventh day, the Wryneck showed well in a small Sycamore along Warren Neck.

Wryneck (Alan Keatley)

The bushes and dunes also held, c.70 Goldfinch, 18 Chiffchaff, 13 Blackcap, three Goldcrest, two Wheatear, four Greenfinch and a Jay with the odd habit of calling like a Buzzard.

Chiffchaff (Alan Keatley)

Lighter passage overhead, with 135 Meadow Pipit, six Pied Wagtail, four Swallow, two Sand Martin and single Grey Wagtail and Chaffinch. A Kingfisher was heard on the golf course pond.

Wildlife News: a Painted Lady. Work began to remove remains of the beached Fin Whale, located just south of Langstone Rock.

Painted Lady (Alan Keatley) 

Friday 30th September

In the estuary, 4-figure counts of Oystercatcher and Wigeon, hundreds of Teal, 348 Curlew, 318 Dunlin, 229 Redshank, 81 Ringed Plover, 77 Grey Plover, 36 Knot, 31 Bar-tailed Godwit, 17 Turnstone, five Sanderling, three juv Curlew Sandpiper, two juv Little Stint and a single Golden Plover circling The Bight at dusk. On the morning tide, waterbirds scattered as a Peregrine stooped repeatedly into The Bight area, a Dunlin was caught but dropped as another Peregrine fought over the kill, later neatly plucked from the water's surface by the first bird.

The sea livened up in the early evening with 23 Sandwich Tern, single Balearic Shearwater and Common Tern.

Unusually, overhead passage picked up from late morning, as the wind strengthened, the total of 470 Meadow Pipit highest count here since Sep 2007.  Also 100+ Linnet (plus c.90 still in The Bight), 60 Swallow, 21 Skylark, 12 Pied Wagtail, five Grey Wagtail, three Chaffinch and single Greenfinch and Buzzard, mostly passed WSW. 

The Wryneck showed twice in the morning and perched up in brambles along Warren Neck, In the bushes and dunes, 20 Chiffchaff, 18 Goldfinch, 9 Blackcap. all five resident Stonechat present; two Wheatear, two Jay, a Goldcrest, a Reed Bunting and a Coal Tit on Warren Point.