Friday 28 September 2018

Bowling Green Marsh

My daily look from the hide at Bowling Green Marsh turned up 30+ Common Greenshank , 22 Pied Avocet , a single Ruff , and a Bar-Tailed Godwit .
I then went to check the viewing platform area and I saw singles of Water Rail , Common Chiffchaff Grey Wagtail , Great Spotted Woodpecker and Eurasian Jay .
Back at home I had 2 Light Brown Apple Moth and a Common Plume that were caught last night .

Eurasian Jay ( Garrulus glandarius ) . Bowling Green Marsh . Topsham . Devon

Light Brown Apple Moth ( Epiphyas postvittana ) . Topsham . Devon

Thursday 27 September 2018

Black-Legged Kittiwake

I have been covering my local patch Bowling Green Marsh since 1985 and like most birders that do the same will know , that most of the times all you get is most of the same everyday . But today was a bit different , as I found an adult Black-Legged Kittiwake in with the Black-Headed Gulls . Now I know that most people will think ( yeah sooooo ! ) but in the 33 years that I have been covering the marsh this was only the second one that I have managed to see on there....So there lol
Also seen on the marsh today were 12 Pied Avocet & 2 Whimbrel . I then went down to the area near the viewing platform where I saw a Water Rail ,  2 Common Chiffchaff , a male and female Blackcap , singles of Great Spotted Woodpecker , Eurasian Nuthatch and Eurasian Jay and there was a large flock of Common Starling in a range of different plumages .
Also seen were the following Butterflies .. Speckled Wood , Red Admiral and Comma .

Common Starling ( Sturnus vulgaris ) . Bowling Green Marsh . Topsham . Devon

Speckled Wood ( Pararge aegeria ) . Bowling Green Marsh . Topsham . Devon

Wednesday 26 September 2018


The day started off well as I had a Firecrest in my garden and as I have been here since 91 and this was the first one that I have ever had in the garden you could say I was over the moon !
I then took a look at Bowling Green Marsh where I saw 18 Common Greenshank , 8 Dunlin , 2 Great Spotted Woodpecker , 2 Common Chiffchaff , a Cetti`s Warbler , and a Coal Tit a bird that you don't see very often on the marsh .

Coal Tit ( Periparus ater ) . Bowling Green Marsh . Topsham . Devon

Sunday 23 September 2018

Common Rosefinch

I started today off at Bowling Green Marsh where I saw a Cattle Egret , 10 Common Greenshank and a Bar-Tailed Godwit . I then went down to Exmouth where I saw my first Arctic Tern of the year along with 12 Sandwich Tern and numerous Common House Martin , on the way back home I stopped for a look at Tremletts Marsh where I saw a Northern Wheatear .
News then came out of a Common Rosefinch seen at Froward Point in South Devon so my mate Andy and myself went to look for it and in the end we ended up getting superb views of it , it was only my second one seen in Devon with my first way back in 2001 on Lundy Island , and its my first one seen on mainland Britain .

Common Rosefinch ( Carpodacus erythrinus ) . Froward Point . Devon

Wednesday 19 September 2018

Another Seawatch

I did another seawatch this morning looking out at Lyme Bay at Exmouth but again it was very poor with the best birds being a couple of Great Skua . But besides them all I saw were 50+ Northern Gannet , 7 Common Scoter , 20+ European Shag , 4 Great Black-Backed Gull , a single Sandwich Tern and a male Common Kestrel .
I then had a look at the top fields at Gore Lane but it was blowing a gale and I could hardly stand up and all I managed to see were 20+ Meadow Pipit .

Meadow Pipit ( Anthus pratensis ) . Gore Lane . Exmouth . Devon

Tuesday 18 September 2018


This morning I did an hour and a half seawatch from the raised beachhuts at Exmouth but I never saw a lot with only 30+ Northern Gannet , 20+ Sandwich Tern and in with them was a possible Arctic Tern but it was just to far out to confirm it for sure , 3 Balearic Shearwater , a single Arctic Skua and a Great Northern Diver . Back home there were 2 Willow Beauties caught last night .

Willow Beauty ( Peribatodes rhomboidaria ) . Topsham . Devon

Monday 17 September 2018

Red Phalarope

A look at Bowling Green Marsh this morning turned out to be better than I expected as there were some small waders on the marsh for the first time in a while , with 20+ Dunlin , 12 Red Knot at least , a single Ruff , a Bar-Tailed Godwit , 9 Common Greenshank and in with the mass of Common Redshank was an adult winter Spotted Redshank but it soon vanished back into the mass and I never saw it again . Also seen were 15 Little Egret and my first Cattle Egret on the marsh this year .
Later in the day myself and Andy Bond decided to go up to the West Huntspill seawall where my first Red /Grey Phalarope of the year was showing very well ( Thanks to the finder Roger Treeby ) .

Red Phalarope (Phalaropus fulicarius ) . West Huntspill Sea Wall . Somerset

Cattle Egret ( Bubulcus ibis ) . Bowling Green Marsh . Topsham . Devon

Friday 14 September 2018

No Sign !

I got to Colaton Raleigh Common at first light this morning to look for yesterdays Pallid Harrier but after spending just over 5 hours there looking for it I got no sign of it at all and I headed for home , I did see 40+ Meadow Pipit , a Tree Pipit , 2 Yellow Wagtail , 3 Common Kestrel and 2 Common Raven .

Sunrise Over Colaton Raleigh Common . Devon

Thursday 13 September 2018

Pallid Harrier

Well who would have thought that today I would end up with a Devon Tick . As this morning I went down to my local patch Bowling Green Marsh more in hope than anything else as lately we are getting no change on the marsh and today was again the same , with the juvenile Western Marsh Harrier putting in an appearance along with 10 Common Greenshank , a Spotted Redshank , 4 Red Knot and a single Pied Avocet........Also seen was the superb Supermarine Spitfire that made a couple of passes over the marsh .
BUT much later in the day I got a message from Exmouth birder Matt Knott telling me that he thought that he had a juvenile Pallid Harrier up on Colaton Raleigh Common so I got in the car and flew !!!! up there as fast as I could and managed to see the bird that had now been confirmed as a Pallid Harrier ( A first for Devon I think ) just before it seemed to go to roost . I will be up there again in the morning to look for it again in hope of getting a shot of it .....Well done Matt .

Supermarine Spitfire . Bowling Green Marsh . Topsham . Devon

Wednesday 12 September 2018


The day started off well as I came out of my house to a commotion of birds and as I looked up a Merlin was going over the  Cemetery grounds in Topsham , my 1st in Topsham this year .
The day then fell off a bit as I went for another look at Bowling Green Marsh but the only birds worth talking about were 9 Northern Pintail , a Water Rail , 6 Red Knot , 5 Whimbrel and 3 nice Yellow Wagtail .

Whimbrel ( Numenius phaeopus ) . Bowling Green Marsh . Topsham . Devon

Tuesday 11 September 2018

Western Marsh Harrier

A couple of distant shots of todays Western Marsh Harrier seen from the hide on Bowling Green Marsh this morning was the best that I could manage .Also seen was 8 Northern Pintail , a Little Grebe , a Water Rail that was creeping through the reeds on the far side of the marsh , 5 Common Greenshank , 2 Whimbrel and a Bar-Tailed Godwit .
I then went to the area by the viewing platform where I saw a Great Spotted Woodpecker , a Common Whitethroat and a Yellow Wagtail flew over the marsh calling .

Western Marsh Harrier ( Circus aeruginosus ) . Bowling Green Marsh . Topsham . Devon

Monday 10 September 2018

Very Slow

An early morning look at Bowling Green Marsh was very slow birding as hardly no small waders are coming onto the marsh at all , with most of them staying out on the Exe Estuary for various reasons !!! and I`m afraid to say it looks like the marsh has had its best days when it was maintained better .
And today all that I saw worth talking about was a single Whimbrel , 9 Common Greenshank and 2 Dunlin.....and a look around the bushes got me 2 Great Spotted Woodpecker , a Eurasian Nuthatch and a Willow Warbler

Great Spotted Woodpecker ( Dendrocopos major ) . Bowling Green Marsh . Topsham . Devon

Saturday 8 September 2018

Eurasian Wryneck

 A look at Bowling Green Marsh this morning only got me a Ruff and 2 Common Chiffchaff but a look at the Clyst Estuay from the viewing platform was a lot better with a Water Rail , 9 Common Ringed Plover , a juvenile Curlew Sandpiper and 2 Glossy Ibis that flew up the Clyst and went towards  Bowling Green Marsh .
I then went out to the Goatswalk where you can look down the Exe Estuary where I saw a Little Egret and a fishing Osprey . News then broke of a Eurasian Wryneck being found at Dawlish Warren on the point , so I went down and joined up with fellow birder Dave Bradford to look for it and as I was walking through the long grass it came up from in front of me and flew around a bit , I called out to Dave and he got on to it and we watched it fly towards the dune ridge , we went over to look for it but we could not find it again . It nice to see my first one in Devon for a while !

Little Egret ( Egretta garzetta ) . The Exe Estuary . Devon

Friday 7 September 2018

Orcombe Point

It was a nice day so I took a look around Orcombe Point in Exmouth . But the birding was rather slow and the best birds that I saw were a couple of Northern Wheatear , also seen were 2 Common Buzzard , a male Eurasian Sparrowhawk , a Common Kestrel and a Common Raven .
Also seen were the following Butterflies , Small White , Speckled Wood , Small Copper , Common Blue and a Wall Brown .

Northern Wheatear ( Oenanthe oenanthe ) . Orcombe Point . Exmouth . Devon

Thursday 6 September 2018

Not a Bad Day

A morning look around the bushes at Bowling Green Marsh got me 8 European Goldfinch , 6 Winter Wren , numerous Common Wood Pigeon , a single Stock Dove , a Great Spotted Woodpecker , a Eurasian Nuthatch and a nice Southern Hawker .
Later in the afternoon around high tide I went down again for another look and this time I saw 7 Pied Avocet , a Common Ringed Plover , a juvenile Ruff , a Water Rail and my first Yellow Wagtail on the marsh this year . And too end the day off there were 2 Osprey fishing in the Exe Estuary .

Southern Hawker ( Aeshna cyanea ) . Bowling Green Marsh . Topsham . Devon

Wednesday 5 September 2018

Cattle Egret

This morning I went down to the Otter Estuary to look for a couple of reported Cattle Egret and I found them in with the cows in the fields north of Whites Bridge and later in the morning they were joined by another one , a very nice surprise . I also went to look for the Spotted Crake but all I managed to see of it today was a very brief view as it dashed out of the reeds and then straight back in again .
Later in the day I got a message telling me that there was a juvenile Garganey on Bowling Green Marsh so I went down to look for it , and it was good to see it but it always stayed a bit distant .
There was one new moth for me out of the lot that I caught last night , a Narrow-Winged Grey .

Cattle Egret ( Bubulcus ibis ) . The Otter Estuary . Devon

Garganey ( Anus querquedula ) . Bowling Green Marsh . Topsham . Devon

Narrow-Winged Grey ( Eudonia angustea ) . Topsham . Devon

Garden Rose Tortrix ( Acleris variegana ) . Topsham . Devon

Tuesday 4 September 2018

Slow Birding

Early this morning I went and had a look around the top fields at Orcombe Point in Exmouth but the birding was very slow and all I saw were 15 Barn Swallow , I was told that there were 50+ Yellow Wagtail in with the cows but I only managed to see 9 of them , a juvenile Northern Wheatear was on the dung heap and also seen was a Common Kestrel and 2 Common Raven .
I also saw this Chinese Character moth at the Bristol Schools Camp .

Chinese Character ( Cilix glaucata ) . Exmouth . Devon

Monday 3 September 2018

Glossy Ibis

I got a message today telling me that there was a Glossy Ibis on Bowling Green Marsh so I nipped down to see if I could catch up with it . When I got there the bird was out on the large island but was not on show , but after about half an hour it decided to fly and it did a circle around the marsh before flying off towards the Exe Estuary and I just managed to get this flight shot of it . Also seen was a juvenile Ruff and 2 late Common Swift .

Out of the moths that I caught last night there were 2 new micros for me with Sharp-Winged Drill and Bloched Marble .

Glossy Ibis ( Plegadis falcinellus ) . Bowling Green Marsh . Topsham . Devon

Bloched Marble ( Endothenia quadrimaculana ) . Topsham . Devon

Sharp-Winged Drill ( Dichrorampha acuminatana ) . Topsham . Devon

Sunday 2 September 2018

Copper Underwing

I took an early morning look around Bowling Green Marsh today but I didn`t see much at all with only a Green Sandpiper and 3 Stock Dove and a walk down to the viewing platform got me a Common Sandpiper on the Clyst Estuary .
I then walked back to the hide where I was shown a Copper Underwing Moth a new one for me .
I then had a look at Goosemoor where the birding was a bit better and I saw an adult and 2 juvenile  Spotted Redshank ( The ones in the pictures ) , 20+ Common Greenshank , 15 Black-Tailed Godwit , 20+ Dunlin , a juvenile Red Knot , a Common Gull and 2 European Reed Warblers

Spotted Redshank ( Tringa erythrpus ) . Goosemooe . Topsham . Devon

Copper Underwing ( Amphipyra pyramidea ) . Bowling Green Marsh . Topsham . Devon