Tuesday 31 October 2023

Grey Phalarope

 A late afternoon trip to the Otter Marshes (LORP ) to look for a Grey Phalarope that was found this morning . By the time that I got there the rain was pouring down so my hopes were not high . And after looking for it for around half an hour with no luck the only thing I got was soaked to the skin . So I was just about to call it a day when the bird was found quite close to the path , I managed to get a couple of shots of the bird and was pleased with them in these bad conditions .

On the the way back to the car there was a Yellow-Browed Warbler in with a few Common Chiffchaff so that was a nice end to the day .

Grey Phalarope ( Phalaropus fulicarius ) . L O R P . Budleigh Salterton . Devon



Wednesday 25 October 2023

Jack Snipe

 Early this morning I went over to have a look around the Exminster Marshes and I started at the north end and walked all around the sodden fields and was rewarded with my 1st Jack Snipe of the year as it flew from in front of me and flew a short distance before dropping into cover again .

 I then got a message telling me that there was a drake Red-Crested Pochard showing on the main reservoir , so I walked down and was lucky to find the finder still there and he soon got me onto the bird . It stayed there for a while giving distant views before flying off . But lucky enough it was later found on the canal and showed very well .

Red-Crested Pochard ( Netta rufina ) . Exminster Marsh . Devon




Friday 20 October 2023

Birds of Prey

 A look around the Exminster Marshes this morning got 5 Birds of Prey with a female Merlin todays Headliner as you do not see these birds very often on the marshes .

Also seen was Common Buzzard , Western Marsh Harrier , Peregrine Falcon and Common Kestrel . Not a lot else to report but a nice walk before the rain set in . 

Eurasian Curlew ( Numenius arquata ) . The Exminster Marshes . Devon


Thursday 19 October 2023

Little Gull

A late afternoon trip down to Teignmouth in hope of seeing the 1st winter Little Gull that had been reported earlier . There was a bit of a swell on the sea with waves crashing onto the sea wall , but still our hopes were high . And then the bird showed itself but it was quite far out , but after a while it came in closer giving great views . We all got a bit wet but it was well worth it .

Earlier in the day I had a look at my local Tremletts Marsh and I saw Black-Headed Gull , Common Gull , Herring Gull , Lesser Black-Backed Gull and a 1st winter Mediterranean Gull . 

Little Gull ( Hydrocoloeus minutus ) . Teignmouth . Devon



Mediterranean Gull ( Larus melanocephalus ) . Tremletts Marsh . Topsham . Devon


Monday 16 October 2023

Ring Ouzel

A trip out to Soussons Down on Dartmoor to look for Ring Ouzels a winter thrush that migrates to Britain this time of year mostly from Scandinavia . And our luck was in as we managed to see 12 of them .

Also seen were 3 Mistle Thrush , 2 Fieldfare , a Common Kestrel and 3 Common Raven .

Ring Ouzel ( Turdus torquatus ) . Soussons .Dartmoor . Devon



Friday 13 October 2023

Birding Cornwall

I have just spent the last four days birding in Cornwall. Here is a list of birds seen , mostly in Porthgwarra and Pendeen Point. Most of the time sea watching as birds on the ground were very scarce.

Balearic Shearwater      Cory`s Shearwater   Great Shearwater   Sooty Shearwater  Manx Shearwater

Northern Gannet     Northern Fulmar   Great Skua   Pomarine Skua   Long-tailed Skua   Arctic Skua

Common Guillemot   Razorbill    European Shag   Atlantic Puffin   Tawny Owl   Collared Dove 

Wood Pigeon    Meadow Pipit  Rock Pipit   Winter wren   Great Spotted Woodpecker   Grey Heron

Common Stonechat    Common Blackbird    Common Kestrel   Eurasian Sparrowhawk   

Common Buzzard     Merlin    Yellow-browed Warbler    Goldcrest   Blue Tit    Long-tailed Tit

Pied Wagtail   Red-billed chough    Common Raven    Carrion Crow    Black-billed Magpie

Jackdaw    European Robin   Herring Gull    Great Black-backed Gull    Black-legged Kittiwake 

European Goldfinch   Eurasian Jay    Eurasian Nuthatch   Common Linnet    Firecrest 

Also seen, Atlantic Grey Seal, Bluefin Tuna and Clouded Yellow Butterfly .

Rock Pipit ( Anthus petrosus )


Clouded Yellow ( Colias crocea )


Saturday 7 October 2023

Not a Lot

A walk from the fisherman's car park on the Exminster Marshes to Turf Locks never got me much at all . As on the marsh there was a Grey Heron , a female Common Kestrel and a Cetti`s Warbler .

It was a little bit better around the Turf Locks area but not a lot with 3 Little Egret , 4 Pied Wagtail , a Common Kingfisher and 30+ Dunlin .  

Dunlin ( Calidris alpina ) . Turf Locks . Devon


Friday 6 October 2023

No Sign !

 There was no sign of yesterdays Richard`s Pipit this morning in the top fields at Orcombe Point . And I only managed to see the following birds . 

Eurasian Sparrowhawk , Carrion Crow 20+ , Black-Billed Magpie 2 , Common Raven 2 , Pied Wagtail 3 , Meadow Pipit , European Goldfinch 2 , Common Linnet 20+

On the way back home a quick stop off at Bowling Green Marsh got me . Common Snipe , Dunlin , Common Greenshank and Bar-Tailed Godwit .

Common Raven ( Corvus corax ) . Orcombe Point . Exmouth . Devon



Thursday 5 October 2023

Richards Pipit

 This morning I took a look around the new LORP reserve at Budleigh Salterton and I got there just as an Osprey was fishing . I watched it for a while before it drifted out of view .

Also seen were 7 Little Egret , 2 Grey Heron,  a Grey Wagtail , an Eurasian Jay and a small flock of Common Linnet .                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I got a message from Exmouth Birder Matt Knott telling me that he had found a Richards Pipit in the top fields at Gore Lane , it was late in the afternoon so I jumped into the car and got there as fast as I could . The field that it was in was full of weeds so there was not much hope of seeing it on the ground , so we formed a line and walked through the field and were rewarded with a couple of flight views of this hard to get bird , especially in Devon .

Many thanks Matt .

Osprey ( Pandion haliaetus ) . LORP . Budleigh Salterton . Devon


Wednesday 4th October


A trip down to Cornwall today with Andy Bond and Dave Boult in hope of seeing the the American juvenile male Northern Harrier that has been seen around the Croft Pascoe Pool area for a few days . We left home at 5 am and got to the spot and started searching for it at around 7.30 , we then searched for it  until 12 o/c with no sign of it at all ! 

So we decided to call it a day and go to Marazion Marsh to look for a juvenile Woodchat Shrike that had just been seen, we had just got into Marazion when a message came over the the Harrier had been seen again . So we then grabbed a quick view of the W Shrike and got back in the car and dashed back for the Harrier . We arrived back and started searching for it and then after a while a shout went up of its showing . I was then rewarded with my 1st Northern Harrier in Britain , the bird always stayed quite distant but I was still very pleased with the views that we got .

The day was then finished off on Bodmin Moor with views of the Lesser Grey Shrike a nice end to the day .

Woodchat Shrike ( Lanius senator ) . Marazion Marsh . Cornwall