A Siberian Chiffchaff was in the Entrance Bushes with 22 Great-crested Grebe offshore, two Shoveler on the Main Pond and 190 Teal, 45 Shelduck, 24 Wigeon and two Greenshank in the estuary.
Thursday, 20 January 2022
Tuesday, 18 January 2022
Sunday, 16 January 2022
Counts from the estuary on the dropping morning tide included 298 Dark-bellied and a Pale-bellied Brent Geese, 157 Teal, 133 Curlew, 83 Bar-tailed Godwit, 78 Shelduck, 71 Turnstone, 20 Sanderling, 17 Wigeon, 10 Greenshank and six Red-breasted Merganser, with three Peregrine on Bull Hill.
Elsewhere two Pintail. four Red-throated and a Great Northern Diver were offshore, a Siberian Chiffchaff, 12 Long-tailed Tit, three Chiffchaff and three Goldcrest were in the bushes and three Little Grebe were on the Main Pond with single Kingfisher, Water Rail and Shoveler.
Saturday, 15 January 2022
Counts from the estuary included 262 Teal, 260 Dark-bellied Brent Geese, 107 Common and an adult Mediterranean Gull, 96 Shelduck, 38 Wigeon, 10 Red-breasted Merganser, six Greenshank, four Egyptian Geese and a Kingfisher.
Elsewhere at least 60 auks were feeding offshore in flat calm conditions with 54 Great-crested Grebe, 12 Red-throated and four Great Northern Diver; 800+ roosting Starling, four Shoveler and a second Kingfisher were at the Main Pond with a Siberian Chiffchaff in Dead Dolphin Wood and two Siskin in the Entrance Bushes.
Just outside the Recording Area a Great White Egret flew south over the village and the two Black-necked Grebe were off Starcross.
Wildlife News: A Fox was hunting around the Main Pond early morning.
Friday, 14 January 2022
Thursday, 13 January 2022
Tuesday, 11 January 2022
A lunchtime visit for the incoming tide revealed 1000+ Dunlin, 143 Grey and 38 Ringed Plover, 68 Brent Geese, 20 Knot and five Sanderling, with a Kestrel and two Cirl Bunting on site and 18 Great-crested Grebe and a Great Northern Diver offshore.
Monday, 10 January 2022
Sunday, 9 January 2022
Saturday, 8 January 2022
A very wet and grey day, seawatching during the day saw counts of 44 Gannet, 31 Great-crested Grebe, 10 Guillemot, nine Great Northern and three Red-throated Diver, five Kittiwake, three Razorbill, a Fulmar and the year's first Common Scoter.
Counts from the estuary included 1700 Dunlin, 165 Grey and 24 Ringed Plover, 110 Bar-tailed Godwit, 96 Dark-bellied Brent Geese, 89 Shelduck, 23 Sanderling, the first two Lesser Black-backed Gull of the year, two Goldeneye and a Great Northern Diver.
Elsewhere a Siberian Chiffchaff near the Main Pond with a single Goldcrest and Chiffchaff. On the pond five Shoveler and single Little Grebe, Water Rail and Kingfisher.
Friday, 7 January 2022
An early visit before the rain arrived saw the first Sparrowhawk of the year in the Entrance Bushes, five Shoveler, two Grey Heron and a Siberian Chiffchaff at the Main Pond with a Great Northern Diver off John's Watch.
Counts from the estuary included 168 Bar-tailed Godwit, 148 Grey and 14 Ringed Plover, 44 Knot, 16 Sanderling, five Greenshank and a female Goldeneye.
Thursday, 6 January 2022
Wednesday, 5 January 2022
Counts from the estuary included 1500 Dunlin, 145 Knot, 130 Grey and 18 Ringed Plover and five Pintail. Elsewhere seven Red-throated Diver and 29 Great-crested Grebe were offshore, five Shoveler were on the Main Pond and two Chiffchaff and a Siberian Chiffchaff were in the bushes.
Wildlife News: Several Buff-tailed Bumblebee and a Seven-spot Ladybird were making the most of the sunny weather.
Tuesday, 4 January 2022
With records from 2020 and an unfortunate tideline corpse found on 9 May, Hedgehog still maintains a foothold on site, sadly the same cannot be said of Mole with no molehills now for over two years near the amusements.
Rabbit numbers continue to decline as a result of disease, apart from the Spring sightings of naïve young bunnies, numbers seen were worryingly low, especially later in the year. The lower numbers may also affect rare plants that rely on grazing rabbits to keep vegetation finely cropped.
Two of the three shrew species were recorded, no reports of Water Shrew, with Common Shrew on 18 May and the scarcer Pygmy Shrew on 12 September, as the norm with shrews sightings these were of dead animals.
Pipistrelle bats are a regular feature over the Warren at dusk with both Common and Soprano recorded this year, two other bat species were over the Golf Course but their identity could not be confirmed, a Brown/Grey Long-eared on 24 June and a Whiskered/Brant's on the 29 September.
A Grey Squirrel found near the Main Pond and Golf Course between 10-19 September was a record stayer for this species, no doubt an adventurous youngster from the mainland. The majority of records are from early autumn.
The most likely vole to now be seen on site is the well-established Water Vole with sightings from the Main Pond and Golf Course throughout the year. The more numerous, but less likely to be seen Field Vole provided food for the ever-present Kestrel on site, especially during autumn and winter. A brave or foolhardy Wood Mouse was seen up an apple tree on 26 October and a despite a presumed continuous presence just one Brown Rat was recorded, around the Amusements in November.
Land predators were seemingly scarce this year with only a couple of Fox and Stoat and a single Weasel sightings, although tracks along the Dune Ridge indicate they are still regularly patrolling the Warren.
Common Dolphin and Harbour Porpoise were seen occasionally throughout the year off Langstone Rock reflecting the increasing numbers in Lyme Bay. However, there were no sightings of Bottle-nosed Dolphin for the second year running and with no occurrences in Torbay this year the species is probably lost from the area.
One or two Grey Seal were regular through the year with a bull often calling to the female in autumn. A single Common Seal was seen in December.
Reptiles and amphibians
At least a dozen Common Lizard, including juveniles, were found basking near the hide in September indicating a good breeding season for this species. This may not be the same for Sand Lizard as sightings were only occasional. The erosion of breeding areas by storms will have a continuing effect on numbers of this introduced species.
A Slow-worm found on the Golf Course on 12 August was a good find as sightings have been in decline in recent years. Common Toad were active from 7 March and the increasing Common Frog noted from 31 July.
Fifteen fish species were recorded this year, some marine species from shore anglers and others from beachcombing or rock pooling at Langstone Rock.
Highlights include two new species; a Red Gurnard on 7 March and a Worm Pipefish on 31 March, both found on the beach at low tide.
At least fifty shoaling Common Rudd in the Main Pond in September is some indication of numbers, these didn't go unnoticed by a Grey Heron taking advantage of this feeding opportunity.
A Starry Smooth-hound feeding in the estuary shallows on 25 September surprised not only the observer but also an on-looking Mute Swan. The second site record of a Atlantic Bluefin Tuna was offshore on 20 November reflects the growing numbers in Lyme Bay after the first in the estuary last year.
Monday, 3 January 2022
A total of 326 species were recorded during the year, mostly from leafmines and light trapping undertaken on the Golf Course on 10 occasions. A remarkable 46 new species were added to the Warren list, including six ‘macro’ moths.
These included a number of presumably overlooked common species such as Mottled Grey Chloroclysta multistrigaria, Garden Rose Tortrix Acleris variegana and Sycamore Piercer Pammene aurita; as well as two introduced adventive species Cypress-tip Moth Argyresthia cupressella from North America and Ruddy Streak Tachystola acroxantha from Australia.
Other more local firsts included Centre-barred Sallow Atethmia centrago, Early Long-horn Adela cuprella, the first confirmed Dusky Thorn Ennomos fuscantaria, Little Slender Calybites phasianipennella, New Oak Slender Caloptilia robustella and Pale Eggar Trichiura crataegi.
Rarer discoveries included three Aethes deaurana, the 10-12th UK records, probably established on site feeding on Alexanders; and three nationally scarce species, Horse Chestnut Pachycnemia hippocastanaria, the first confirmed record for this heathland specialist, New Marsh Cosmet Cosmopterix scribaiella, new to Devon and Sorrel Midget Enteucha acetosae.
Other species recorded included local specialties such as Crescent Dart Agrotis trux, Shore Wainscot Mythimna litoralis, Dusky Aroga velocella and Beautiful Groundling Caryocolum marmoreum, Hoary Gymnancyla canella, Sandhill Anerastia lotella and Gorse Knot-horn Pempelia genistella and Sea-rush Case-bearer Coleophora maritimella.
More familiar species included Scarlet Callimorpha dominula and Jersey Tiger Euplagia quadripunctaria, Blood-vein Timandra comae, Rosy Footman Miltochrista miniata, Old Lady Mormo maura and Pale Calliteara pudibunda and Nut-tree Tussock Colocasia coryli.
The clear pick of the migrants was the first Clifden Nonpareil Catocala fraxini for the Recording Area in early September, but another first, Black-tipped Ermine Yponomeuta plumbella, was presumably also a migrant as the foodplant, Spindle, does not occur on site.
The first Diamondback Plutella xylostella was on 1 Apr, with the first Silver Y Autographa gamma in early June with records through to November with a peak in early September, a Dark Sword-grass Agrotis ipsilon was trapped in mid-August, single Gem Nycterosea obstipata and Scarce Bordered Straw Helicoverpa armigera were with the Clifden with several Vestal Rhodometra sacraria and a few Rush Veneer Nomophila noctuella. A Convolvulus Hawkmoth Agrius convolvuli was found in late September along with the first Rusty-dot Pearl Udea ferrugalis.
Dawlish Warren Moths
Devon Moth Group article
Sunday, 2 January 2022
Saturday, 1 January 2022
An unseasonably warm start to the year, a stark contrast to the frozen conditions a year ago. A total of 77 species were recorded during the day the full breakdown can be found here.
The highlight was an adult Spoonbill that flew north late afternoon, with the juvenile Spoonbill roosting on Finger Point. Also in the estuary the two Black-necked Grebe with counts including 1,600 Dunlin, 710 Oystercatcher, 420 Dark-bellied and a Pale-bellied Brent Geese, 216 Wigeon, 146 Teal, 134 Grey and eight Ringed Plover, 122 Common and two Mediterranean Gull, 117 Turnstone, 107 Bar and a Black-tailed Godwit, 104 Knot, 11 Sanderling, seven Greenshank, two Goldeneye and a Pintail.
Elsewhere a Siberian Chiffchaff was by the Main Pond with 10 Cirl Bunting, three Chiffchaff, three Goldcrest and a Tawny Owl in the bushes and four Great Northern and four Red-throated Diver offshore.
Wildlife News: The mild weather and lack of frosts aided the annual New Year Plant Hunt with a record 46 species in flower including Thrift, Butcher's Broom, Spear Thistle, Scarlet Pimpernel, Rock Samphire, Hogweed, Common Stork's-bill and Early Meadow Grass.
The lack of sunshine reduced potential insect activity with a Buff-tailed Bumblebee by the seawall and single Marmalade and Spotted Meliscaeva Hoverfly on the wing.
The traditional BSBI New Year Plant hunt saw a total of 34 (10 non-native) species in flower, a couple more than 2020 but still lower than previous years. Dog-rose Rosa canina and Sweet Alison Lobularia maritima were recorded for the first time, with Sweet Violet Viola odorata and Summer Snowflake Leucojum aestivum also noted. Alexanders Smyrnium olusatrum was previously a regular find but has not flowered for three hunts in a row.
A total of 438 species were recorded during the year including seven species new to the Recording Area flora, five of these were non-natives including Spring Starflower Ipheion uniflorum and Water Bent Polypogon viridis as well as two species planted on site which have spread to new areas; Russian Vine Fallopia baldschuanica and Mediterranean Spurge Euphorbia characias.
The two new native species were Giant Horsetail Equisetum telmateia and the dandelion Taraxacum degelii, the first south Devon record for this rare coastal endemic.
Four species were rediscovered for the first time in over 30 years; Lesser Stitchwort Stellaria graminea, Smooth Tare Vicia tetrasperma, Meadow Vetchling Lathyrus pratensis and Plum Prunus domestica. Another four appeared for the first time in over 20 years; Dodder Cuscuta epithymum, Grass Vetchling Lathyrus nissolia, Long-headed Poppy Papaver dubium and Spear Mint Mentha spicata. Five of these species appeared after mowing changes following Recording Group advice to the Warren Golf Club.
Other notable records included an extensive new population of Mossy Stonecrop Crassula tillea on the Golf Course, another good year for Sand Crocus Romulea columnae, with the 2022 plants in leaf in November, their earliest ever emergence, Small Pondweed Potamogeton berchtoldii in several Golf Course ponds, a good show of Small Adder’s-tongue Ophioglossum azoricum in Greenland Lake and three tideline Sunflower Helianthus annuus.
The dry conditions during spring saw many of the clovers struggle to flower, but a spell of wet weather in late April led to a second flush of growth for some species such as Bird's-foot Ornithopus perpusillus, Subterranean Trifolium subterraneum and Bird's-foot Clover T.ornithopodioides.
The spring weather also meant Sea Daffodil Pancratium maritimum and the regular Green-winged Orchid Orchis morio did not flower and only a single Pyramidal Orchid Anacamptis pyramidalis emerged on Warren Point.
In wetter areas, Purple Loosestrife Lythrum salicaria, Southern Marsh Orchid Dactylorhiza praetermissa and Marsh Helleborine Epipactis palustris did well, with the latter still flowering in November, outlasting the Autumn Ladies-tresses Spiranthes spiralis. At the eastern end of Greenland Lake, the Bee Orchid Ophrys apifera colony increased.
Mosses & Liverworts
Both Micheli's Balloonwort Sphaerocarpos michelii and Blue Crystalwort Riccia crystallina were found in new locations around the car park and Go-karts. The Recording Area is one of two Devon locations for these nationally rare liverworts, with the other just the mainland side of the Railway Tunnel, there the populations remain in decline.
Fairy Beads Microlejeunea ulicina was discovered on sallows in the Entrance Bushes, the only new species of the year.
At total of 71 species were noted, with 15 new to the Recording Area. These included the nationally scarce Catillaria nigroclavata, Diploschistes caesioplumbeus and Moelleropsis nebulosi, along with Normandina pulchella (Elf's Ears), Peltigera rufescens and Stenocybe pullulata (Alder Pin).
Increased erosion of the fixed dunes on Warren Point led to further losses of the nationally scarce Peltigera neckeri however a new population was found on the Dune Ridge near the Main Pond.
Of the 198 species recorded, 46 were new for the Recording Area taking the site total to over 700 species, but with 20,000 in the UK there are many more to be found.
New fungi recorded during the year included only the fourth English record of Nectriopsis lecanodes on Peltigera lichen and the first Devon records of Grape Hyacinth Anther Smut Antherospora hortensis and Tuberculina sbrozzii on Periwinkle Rust Puccinia vincae. Other new Warren species included Alder Tongue Taphrina alni, a gall on Alder catkins; Blushing Milkcap Lactarius controversus, Redleg Club Typhula erythropus, Rush Disco Dasyscyphus apalus and Yellow Stainer Agaricus xanthodermus.
Other records included Birch Knight Tricholoma fulvum, Cloudy Agaric Clitocybe nebularis, Creamy Pinkgill Entoloma sericellum and Drab Bonnet Mycena aetites, with showier species such as Collared Earthstar Geastrum triplex, Eyelash Cup Scutellinia scutellata and Scarlet Elfcup Sarcoscypha coccinea.
A much improved showing of Blackening Waxcap Hygrocybe conica in Greenland Lake but again no Winter Stalk Puffball Tulostoma brumale. On a positive note the first Dune Stinkhorn Phallus hadriani for several years was along the Dune Ridge, with Dune Brittlestem Psathyrella ammophila and Dune Conecap Conocybe dunensis.