The two Black-necked Grebe were back off Cockwood, along with three Goldeneye, including a drake.
Sunday, 30 January 2022
Saturday, 29 January 2022
Friday, 28 January 2022
Thursday, 27 January 2022
Two Siberian Chiffchaff were by the Main Pond with a Common Chiffchaff with six Shoveler, two Water Rail and a Kingfisher on the pond.
Although the regular species were all present there were no meaningful counts of waders with numbers low on a low high tide and being flushed offsite by a hunting Peregrine. They were however 126 Dark-bellied Brent Geese, 38 Ringed Plover, two Red-breasted Merganser and a flyover Golden Plover.
It was much choppier offshore than of late with no sign of the Slavonian and just 25 Great-crested Grebe along with 25 Kittiwake, seven Red-throated and a Great Northern Diver, four Razorbill and two Common Scoter.
Wildlife News: A Grey Seal was in the estuary.
Wednesday, 26 January 2022
Tuesday, 25 January 2022
Monday, 24 January 2022
Sunday, 23 January 2022
The Slavonian Grebe remained offshore with 19 Great-crested Grebe, 17 Razorbill, 13 Red-throated and Great Northern Diver, seven Red-breasted Merganser and three Common Scoter. On site just eight Long-tailed Tit and a single Chiffchaff with four Shoveler and single Water Rail, Teal and Little Grebe on the Main Pond.
Counts from the estuary were hampered by the presence of a photographer on the main roost at Finger Point, disturbing the birds at high tide. This area is fenced off to avoid disturbance at high tide and their presence and behaviour a criminal offence. The counts managed were as follows 744 Oystercatcher, 292 Teal, 195 Bar-tailed Godwit, 127 Dark-bellied Brent Geese, 79 Shelduck, 37 Ringed Plover and 15 Wigeon.
Saturday, 22 January 2022
The highlight was a Slavonian Grebe offshore, the first since Herbert, and only the second new arrival in the last five years. Also offshore 53 Great-crested Grebe, five Red-throated and three Great Northern Diver, eight Common Scoter and c40 auks, mostly Razorbill close in.
Counts over the morning high tide included 1400 Dunlin, 1010 Oystercatcher, 356 Teal, 316 Dark-bellied Brent Geese, 182 Bar-tailed Godwit, 153 Grey and 27 Ringed Plover, 103 Redshank, 82 Knot, 81 Shelduck, 32 Turnstone, 29 Wigeon, 12 Sanderling, eight Greenshank, six Red-breasted Merganser and a Kingfisher.
Elsewhere single Fieldfare and Golden Plover overhead were new for the year, with five Shoveler, two Water Rail and a Kingfisher were at the Main Pond with a Siberian Chiffchaff, Tawny Owl, 41 Goldfinch and a Reed Bunting in the bushes.
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