Sunday 20 August 2017

Sunday 20th August

Sea defence works along on the dune ridge continue to restrict access to the hide and Warren Point. The golf course is not a public right of way. Please follow signs and access guidance from staff. No works today so access was less restricted.

The juv White-winged Black Tern was off Shelly Beach and Cockle Sands, Exmouth this morning, watched from Warren Point. It didn't venture within the recording area, but some of the assembled throng did with 553 Black-headed Gull feeding briefly along the main Exe channel.

Peak counts on the ebbing morning tide and evening high tide were 1107 Oystercatcher, 413 Curlew, 269 Redshank, 209 Dunlin, 151 Ringed Plover, 50+ Sandwich Tern, 34 Great Black-backed Gull, 30+ Common Tern; 27 Mute Swan, 27 Bar-tailed Godwit, 18 Cormorant, 16 (2 summer-plumage) Grey Plover, 14 Black-tailed Godwit, 13 Sanderling, 12 Turnstone, 10 Mediterranean Gull (3 juv, 2 fs, ss, 4 adult), six Whimbrel, five Greenshank, three juv Shelduck, three Grey Heron and three Little Egret.

A Whimbrel colour-ringed in mid-west Wales in 2015 spent a few weeks in both springs of 2016 and 2017 on the lower Exe Estuary, and then was seen here as a returning bird for the first time today.

Black-tailed Godwit (Lee Collins)

Calm conditions this morning before the remnants of 'Hurricane Gert' produced nothing of note, then as the SSW strengthen and the rain arrived, two Manx Shearwater and single Balearic ShearwaterStorm Petrel and the Great Northern Diver again offshore.

Overhead, post-roost feeding low of the estuary and later moving ahead of the rain band, 50 Swallow, 15 House Martin, six Swift, a Sand Martin, a Grey Wagtail and a Yellow Wagtail.  Largely abandoned compared to yesterday, the bushes supported only low single-figures of the regular warblers; a Sedge Warbler and a Wheatear were on the golf course.

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