Saturday 11 July 2020

Saturday 11th July

Shimmer during long periods of blazing sunshine limited the range of observations and the less than usual representative counts of waders today were 238 Oystercatcher, four Ringed Plover, four Dunlin, an adult Black-tailed Godwit and a dull immature Knot. Of the new Oystercatcher  arrivals, '7U' has presumably spent the summer on breeding grounds on Islay, Inner Hebrides, where it was also seen in spring 2019.  Scotland is a common origin of Oystercatcher that winter in the Exe Estuary; see project summaries.

Also in front of the dilapidated remains of bird hide were up to 72 Sandwich Tern (14 juvs of 59 birds) and among them red colour-ringed 'KDB' was back for its fifth successive July. This regular visitor was ringed on 13th Sep 2015 at Ynyslas, mid coast of Wales.  In July & August 2019 it was recorded at Dawlish Warren over a 38-day period. 

The tern roost flock also contained 13 Common Tern and two unringed Roseate Tern, suspected to be 3cy birds; and an Arctic Tern flew out to sea.  Large numbers of gulls were 'anting' over The Bight where later they descended to roost and present were at least 21 Mediterranean Gull and 'TM1E' a Polish ringed Black-headed Gull that has returned for its third successive autumn.  An adult Common Gull was the first sighting of this species in seven weeks here.

Chiffchaff and Blackcap remained numerous in the woodlands; a few juv Stonechat were scattered about on dune bushes, two juv Rock Pipit were again along the dune ridge and in The Bight; two Bullfinch called from Entrance Bushes and where a Great Spotted Woodpecker was heard.  As noted in previous years by other individuals, a Blue Tit regularly uttered a shrill subservient contact type call that sounds rather like Treecreeper, so a pitfall for the unwary.

Wildlife News: masses of Gatekeeper, many Small Skipper, some Common Blue, Meadow Brown, Large White, Small White, Green-veined White; two generations of Small Copper; four Comma and two Large Skipper.  A few Emperor, Blue-tailed Damselfly and the year's first  teneral Migrant Hawker.

Great Pied Hoverfly Volucella pellucens (left) and Silvery Leafcutter Bee (right) - Alan Keatley

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