Wednesday 30 October 2019

Mad !

Rough and stormy weather this morning saw me looking around Orcombe Point in Exmouth and yes I know what your thinking he must be mad . And perhaps your right as the only birds I saw were 2 Firecrest that were in with a flock of Long-Tailed Tits that were constantly on the move .
On my way back home I took a look at the Exe Estuary where I saw quite a few Dark Bellied Brent Geese and in with them were a few of the Pale Bellied race ( hrota ) .

Brent Goose ( Branta bernicla ) . The Exe Estuary . Exmouth . Devon

Tuesday 29 October 2019


News came out yesterday of some Hawfinch seen in the Haldon Forest , so today I went up to see if there was ant still about . The first place I went to to was where they were seen yesterday but all I saw there was 200+ Common Wood Pigeon that were flying over heading south , 3 Common Crossbill also went over and in the trees were a flock of Common Chaffinch .
I then went to another site under the row of pylons and after a while I logged onto a single Hawfinch but I only saw it on top of a tree for a short while before it dropped into cover , a couple of other birders were looking for it also and after a bit of a wait I managed to pick the bird up on call and it then flew out of the trees giving all of us nice views , also seen were 5 more Common Crossbill and a flock of 100+ Redwing .

Eurasian Collared Dove ( Streptopelia decaocto ) . Topsham . Devon

Saturday 26 October 2019

Seawatching In The Rain

Early morning saw me at the raised beach huts at the far end of Exmouth Seafront to do a seawatch , I arrived to see fellow birder Matt Knott already there just as the rain started to fall . At first the only things on show was a flock of Black-Headed Gulls but after a while I started to pick out quite a few Northern Gannet going through , there was also 20+ Common Scoter , 20+ Black-Legged Kittywake , a Great Northern Diver , a Red-Throated Diver and a distant Arctic Skua that I saw for a short spell before it was lost from view in the increasing  bad weather .... winter is here !

Thursday 24 October 2019

Long-Eared Owl

This Long-Eared Owl was another great find by Exmouth birder Matt Knott . It was found in the fields at the top of Gore Lane , and it was sat out on one of the fence posts before I got there but it had moved into cover by the time I arrived but I still just about managed to get this shot of it , I know its not the best of shots but then again it was a lot better than I expected .
I then went to the Bristol Schools Camp Grounds where this smart male Black Redstart was showing well and I also grabbed a shot of a Great Spotted Woodpecker as it shot past me into the trees .

Long-Eared Owl ( Asio otus ) . The Top Fields . Gore Lane . Exmouth . Devon

Black Redstart ( Phoenicuros ochruros ) . The Bristol Schools Camp . Exmouth . Devon

Great Spotted Woodpecker ( Dendrocopos major ) . The Bristol Schools Camp . Exmouth . Devon

Tuesday 22 October 2019


I had my first autumn movement of thrushes in the Topsham Cemetery Grounds this morning . With a small flock of Fieldfare and Redwing and in with them were a few Mistle Thrush and Song Thrush .
Also seen was a Eurasian Nuthatch and a small flock of Common Chaffinch .
I then had a look at Goosemoor but there was no sign of the Long-Billed Dowitcher this morning and all there was were a few Common Greenshank and a Grey Wagtail , and later in the day the European Green Woodpecker came to feed in my garden again .

Common Greenshank ( Tringa nebularia ) . Goosemoor . Topsham . Devon

Monday 21 October 2019

More Ring Ouzel

This morning the 1st winter Long-Billed Dowitcher was on Goosemoor in Topsham along with  a few Common Greenshank . I then decided to go out to Emsworthy Mire on Dartmoor to see if I could manage to get a shot of a Ring Ouzel and after a wait of over an hour 3 birds came back to their favourite tree to feed on the berries and I managed to get a couple of shots before they vanished deep in the tree again .
Later in the afternoon this stunning female European Green Woodpecker came back into my garden to feed , it stayed for a while but was always very alert !..... Ohhhh how I love Woodpeckers .

Ring Ouzel ( Turdus torquatus ) . Emsworthy Mire . Dartmoor . Devon

European Green Woodpecker ( Picus viridis ) . Topsham . Devon

Sunday 20 October 2019

Short-Eared Owl

An early morning call this morning telling me that there was a Short-Eared Owl hunting in the top fields at Orcombe Point saw me getting there as fast as I could . And my luck was in as in the end there were 2 birds on show , I was lucky enough to get these two distant shots of one of them but the light was not too good early in the morning , but it was my first this year in my county of Devon so that was pleasing . Many thanks Matt as always .
Also seen were numerous Meadow Pipit , 3 Blackcap and a Mistle Thrush .

Short-Eared Owl ( Asio flammeus ) . The Top Fields . Orcombe Point . Exmouth . Devon

Thursday 17 October 2019

Ring Ouzel

A trip up to Emswoth Mire on Dartmoor today with my mate Charlie Fleming in hope of seeing a Ring Ouzel as a few were reported there yesterday and we managed to see just one of them , Charlie got some great shots of it but I had gone to look for it elsewhere ...Damn
Also seen were over 30 Mistle Thrush , 3 Fieldfare , a long distance view of a female Merlin and 3 Common Raven .

Mistle Thrush ( Turdus viscivorus ) . Emsworthy Mire . Dartmoor . Devon

Merlin ( Falco columbarius ) . Emsworthy Mire . Dartmoor . Devon

Tuesday 15 October 2019

A Good Day !

Today Charlie Fleming , Dave Land and myself went up to Dorset to do some birding and out of the birds we saw today a Red-Breasted Flycatcher at the Hump on Avalanche Road was the star bird for me .
The day started at Radipole RSPB where we saw 5 Mediterranean Gull , 2 Bearded Reedling , 8 Cetti`s Warbler , a Eurasian Sparrowhawk and a few Reed Bunting . We then had a look at the Lodmoor Reserve where the star bird was a White-Rumped Sandpiper but it was always very distant , also seen was a Great White Egret and 2 Western Marsh Harrier .

Red-Breasted Flycatcher ( Ficedula parva ) . The Hump . Avalanche Road . Portland

Great White Egret ( Ardea albus ) . Lodmoor . Dorset

Reed Bunting ( Emberiza schoeniclus ) Radipole RSPB . Weymouth . Dorset

Monday 14 October 2019

The Wanderer Returns

This morning the juvenile/1st winter Long-Billed Dowitcher returned to Bowling Green Marsh after it had gone missing for about a week , the weather today was very bad so the expectation of getting a nice shot looked improbable but our luck was in as it came to the small island right in front of the hide and posed for quite a while .
Also seen today were numerous Northern Pintail , 14 Northern Shoveler , a male Galwall , a Gargany in eclipse plumage , 5 Bar-Tailed Godwit , 2 Curlew Sandpiper , a Whimbrel and a male Eurasian Sparrowhawk .

Long-Billed Dowitcher ( Limnodromus scolopaceus ) . Bowling Green Marsh . Topsham . Devon

Friday 11 October 2019

Sea Watch

This morning I went down to the raised beach huts at Exmouth to do a sea watch but the only trouble was that the rain was coming right at me so I soon got soaked . I soon got my eye in and started to pick out Northern Gannet and Black-Legged Kittiwake . The visibility was not very good but I managed to pick out one Great Skua and a Balearic Shearwater as it flashed past between the waves , the only other thing of note were 2 Common Scoter that were quite close in . It now seems that I missed a Sabine`s Gull go through.....Damn lol
Overnight I managed to catch these three moths and the Lesser Yellow Underwing was a new one for me so that was pleasing .

Lesser Yellow Underwing ( Noctua comes ) . Topsham . Devon

Large Yellow Underwing ( Noctua pronuba ) . Topsham . Devon

Feathered Ranunculus ( Polymixis lichenea ) . Topsham . Devon

Wednesday 9 October 2019

My Encounter With a Woodpecker

This male European Green Woodpecker dropped in and started to feed in the garden next to mine allowing me these photographic opportunities and as its a bird that you don't get close to very often I grabbed my chance to enjoy this bird !
Later on I took a look at the Exe Estuary off of the Topsham Recreation Ground and I managed to see 11 Red Knot , 2 Curlew Sandpiper and a Grey Wagtail .

European Green Woodpecker ( Picus viridis ) . Topsham . Devon

Sunday 6 October 2019

Western Marsh Harrier

My look at Bowling Green Marsh this morning got me this distant Western Marsh Harrier that flew over the marsh heading towards the Clyst Marshes . Also seen was a Common Chiffchaff , a few Goldcrest and a Common Raven .
Later in the day I viewed 4 Cattle Egret from Topsham Cemetery when they were on the Darts Farm marshes .

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

Saturday 5 October 2019


I had an early morning look around the top fields at Orcombe Point in Exmouth this morning but there was not a lot to be seen with only quite a few Barn Swallow and Meadow Pipits going through , in the bushes there was a few Goldcrest and a Common Raven went over .
I then met up with my mate Matt Knott and he said that he had caught a few moths last night and if I wanted to see them I could , so I went back to his house and saw 5 new ones for me with  Anomalous , Barred Sallow , Delicate , Grey Pine Carpet and Heath Rustic .

Barred Sallow ( Xanthia aurgo ) . Exmouth . Devon

Anomalous ( Stibia avomala ) . Exmouth . Devon

Delicate ( Mythimna vitellina ) . Exmouth . Devon

Grey Pine Carpet ( Thera obeliscata ) . Exmouth . Devon

Heath Rustic ( Xestia agathina ) . Exmouth . Devon

Brindled Green ( Dryobotodes eremita ) . Exmouth . Devon

Flounced Chestnut ( Agrochola helvola ) . Exmouth . Devon

Thursday 3 October 2019

No Change

Todays look at Bowling Green Marsh got me the Long-Billed Dowitcher but it was very distant in the right hand corner of the marsh in with a flock of 20+ Common Greenshank , also seen today were 7 Pied Avocet , numerous Common Redshank and Black-Tailed Godwit , 9 Bar-Tailed Godwit , a Common Sandpiper and there was also a large flock of Eurasian Curlew and in with them was a single Whimbrel . And they were put to flight quite often by a male & female Eurasian Sparrowhawk and a juvenile Peregrine Falcon .

Bar-Tailed Godwit ( Limosa lapponica ) . Bowling Green Marsh . Topsham . Devon