Friday 27 January 2023

Ludwell Valley

This morning I took a look around the Ludwell Valley area of Exeter . And after a bit of a search I was lucky enough to see 2 White Throated Dipper , 2 Collared Dove , a Winter Wren and a Common Raven .

Further along by the Wonford Flood Relief Channel . I saw a Green Sandpiper , 2 Grey Wagtail and a Common Chiffchaff . 

Green Sandpiper ( Tringa ochropus ) . Ludwell Valley Area . Exeter . Devon


Thursday 26 January 2023

Wednesday 25th January

My day started off at a frozen and misty Bowling Green Marsh . There, I saw numerous Black-Tailed Godwit , 100+ Pied Avocet , 20+ Northern Lapwing , 6 Common Snipe and a Water Pipit a bird that I have not seen on the marsh for many a year . 

I then went to an area near Cockwood and I saw 2 Cattle Egret . The day was was then finished off at Starcross with a couple of nice Firecrest .

Firecrest ( Regulus ignicapilla ) . Starcross . Devon



Cattle Egret ( Bubulcus ibis ) . Cockwood . Devon


Monday 23 January 2023

Norfolk Trip

A trip to Norfolk with Ken, Andy and the intrepid Paul. We left Exeter at 11pm on Thursday the 19th, and our first stop was at Stonehenge, where we saw our first bird of the trip, a hunting Barn Owl. An early start the next day , where we saw numerous birds including Brambling, 2 Water Rail and a Muntjac Deer. Our next stop was at Holkham , where we saw 2 Red Kite, a Western Marsh Harrier and a Chinese Water Deer. Also seen at Holkham were 20 plus Snow Bunting, 8 Shore Lark, and 20 plus Common Linnet . Our last stop of the day was at Warham Greens, where we saw another Barn Owl, 2 male and 4 female Hen Harrier and 20 plus European Golden Plover .

Next day a return to Holkham, where we saw a large flock of Greater White Fronted Geese and another large flock of Pink Footed Geese. Also a single Barnacle Goose, 8 Red Legged Partridge and a Great White Egret. We then went to Brancaster, where we saw a superb Hume`s Leaf Warbler . Onto another area near Stanhoe , where we saw a Tundra Bean Goose and 1000 plus Pink Footed Geese.

Blakeney Marshes , where we saw 18 Twite , a bird I was keen to see. At Warham Greens , we saw 2 more Barn Owl and a Red Kite . After missing out yesterday . we connected with a Juvenile Pallid Harrier. A fantastic sight .We finished the day off back at Holkham, with 5 Grey Partridge and a Woodcock..

On our last day, we woke to a Winter Wonderland with an outside temperature of -6.5 !!! We then headed for home with our first stop at Eldernell, Cambridgeshire, where we saw a Tawny Owl sat in a tree, and a very elusive Long Eared Owl. Our last stop of the trip, was at Eye Brook Reservoir in Leicestershire, where we saw 4 male and 1 female Smew, 2 Great White Egret and 2 Little Grebe.

It was  a really good trip with good company . We must do it again .

Shore Lark ( Eremophila alpestris ) . Holkham . Norfolk


Snow Bunting ( Plectrophenax nivalis ) . Holkham . Norfolk


Hume`s Leaf Warbler ( Phylloscopus humei ) . Brancaster . Norfolk



Twite ( Carduelis flavirostris ) . Blakeney Marshes . Norfolk


Grey Partridge ( Perdix perdix ) . Holkam . Norfolk


Wednesday 18 January 2023

Slow Going

Another look at Bowling Green Marsh this morning got me much of the same with numerous Northern Pintail and a few Tufted Duck being the best of the wildfowl . There was also a European Spoonbill , 20+ Northern Lapwing and 7 Common Snipe .

A walk down the lane to the viewing platform got me 8 Dunnock . a Song Thrush , a Eurasian Bullfinch and my first Common Stonechat of the year .

Northern Lapwing ( Vanellus vanellus ) . Bowling Green Marsh . Topsham . Devon


Tuesday 17 January 2023

Birding Exmouth

 A look around Exmouth today did not turn out to bad as I saw the following birds . At the Mudbank Lane area there was a male and female Common Goldeneye , a male & 2 female Red-Breasted Merganser , 2 Common Gull , 2 Little Egret and 4 Ruddy Turnstone .

Then a look in Lyme Bay got me 2 European Shag and 3 Common Eider . And I then had a Rose-Ringed Parakeet in the Maer Valley before finishing the day off with a Common Sandpiper at Phear Park .

Common Sandpiper ( Actitis hypoleucos ) . Phear Park . Exmouth . Devon


Monday 16 January 2023

Monday 16th January

 Not a lot to report today . But it was nice to get my 1st European Green Woodpecker of the year feeding on my lawn first thing .

I then did the walk around Topsham and in the Bowling Green Marsh area there was numerous Northern Pintail , a Ruff and a few Long-Tailed Tit . And near the Goatwalk that looks out at the Exe Estuary there was 9 Ruddy Turnstone .

Ruddy Turnstone ( Arenaria interpres ) . The Goatwalk . Topsham . Devon


Sunday 15 January 2023

Saturday 14th January

 My look at Bowling Green Marsh from the hide today didn`t turn up much at all with the main birds being two Eurasian Spoonbill . All the usual wildfowl was on show along with a few Gadwall and two female Common Pochard .

Also seen were over 200 Pied Avocet , a Spotted Redshank , a Ruff and our long staying Lesser Black-Backed Gull that goes by the name of Psycho , due to his habit of catching and eating the smaller waders .

Lesser Black-Backed Gull ( Larus graellsii ) . Bowling Green Marsh . Devon


Friday 13 January 2023

Bowling Green Marsh

 A morning look at Bowling Green Marsh got me three new birds for the year  . With Pied Avocet , Eurasian Sparrowhawk and Redwing .

There was plenty of other birds too see with 2 female Common Pochard , 5 Common Snipe , Ruff , Common Greenshank , Mistle Thrush and a small flock of European Greenfinch . 

Mistle Thrush ( Turdus viscivorus ) . Bowling Green Marsh . Topsham . Devon


Sunday 8 January 2023

Saturday 7th January

 A trip out to Colyford Common for a Mega Bird today an Eastern Yellow Wagtail with my mate Andy Bond . We got there just as it started to rain with thunder and lightning so we sat in the car for a while hoping that the bird would turn up . And after a while we got the good news that the bird was showing . It took us a while to walk from the car park to the common and our hearts jumped for joy when we saw a crowd of people looking at the bird .

The bird was showing very well on the boardwalk along with the Isabelline Wheatear . This is only the 2nd time that I have seen these birds , with the first at Colyton Sewage Works in 2010 .

What a great start to the year with Isabelline Wheatear , Laughing Gull and Eastern Yellow Wagtail all seen in my home county of Devon .

Eastern Yellow Wagtail ( Motacilla tschutschensis ) . Colyford Common . Devon




Friday 6 January 2023

Laughing Gull

  A trip down to Beesands Ley in Devon today to look for a reported Laughing Gull that has been seen for the last few days, but after a bit of a wait  there was no sign of it . But I did see a nice male Ring-Necked Duck and a Great Crested Grebe .

So we decided to head for home and we got quite a bit of a way when a message came over the phone that the Laughing Gull was in a small gull roost on Torcross beach . So we turned around and headed back there and was rewarded with my first Laughing Gull in Devon since 2007 .

Laughing Gull ( Larus atricilla ) . Torcross . Devon



Ring-Necked Duck ( Aythya collaris ) . Beesands Ley . Devon


Wednesday 4 January 2023

Isabelline Wheatear

A trip out with Sue this morning to have another look at the Isabelline Wheatear that is still showing well on Colyford Common in East Devon . We arrived to find quite a few birders there already and we soon got onto the bird .

We were there for a couple of hours and got great views , also seen was a Water Pipit and quite a few Rock Pipits & Meadow Pipits 

Isabelline Wheatear ( Oenanthe isabellina ) . Colyford Common . Devon





Tuesday 3 January 2023

Eurasian Spoonbill

It was pouring down with rain this morning so I went to the hide at Bowling Green Marsh in Topsham and the first bird that I saw was a Eurasian Spoonbill .

I then had a good look at the marsh and saw all the normal birds for this time of year , But it was nice to see quite a few Gadwall , 2 female Pochard , numerous Northern Pintail and a smart looking Ruff .

Eurasian Spoonbill ( Platalea leucorodia ) . Bowling Green Marsh . Devon


Monday 2 January 2023

Homeward Bound

 This morning I had a quick walk around again and saw a Rose-Ringed Parakeet on the same apple tree as yesterday .

On the journey back home a Red Kite was over the M4 near Reading .

Rose-Ringed Parakeet ( Psittacula krameri ) . Boreham Wood . Hertfordshire


Sunday 1st January

 Happy New Year

I had to go up to Boreham Wood in Hertfordshire over the new year on family issues . So birding was on the back boiler but I did see a Rose-Ringed Parakeet .

Later on in the day we went to Flitwick in Bedfordshire to see if we could catch up with a very strange bird a male Lady Amherst`s Pheasant . We arrived to find a few birders already there and after a bit of a wait the bird came out into view and as you can see its a cracking looking bird .

This is only the second time that I have seen these birds with my 1st way back in 1987 at Ampthill that is very close to Flitwick .

Lady Amherst`s Pheasant ( Chrysolophus amherstiae ) . Flitwick . Bedfordshire