Black-winged Stilt

Black Hole Marsh, Seaton, Devon 

News broke very suddenly of a Black-winged Stilt on site. Having the afternoon to myself and about to head out locally, I decided a change of plan was in order. I first saw the bird (a Female) from the viewing platform but moved on to the tower hide as that's were it was hanging around. To say the bird was showy is an understatement. I enjoyed the views for a while with some other admirers and it was nice to meet some familiar faces and to put some faces to names. I then moved on and on the path back was a Common Reed Bunting. Oddly my first I'd the year. A cracking record for the site indeed.

Black-winged Stilt (Female)

Black-winged Stilt (Female)

Black-winged Stilt (Female)

Black-winged Stilt (Female)

Black-winged Stilt (Female)

Lesser Yellowlegs

Lower Otter Restoration Project, Devon 

I had a flying visit to look for the reported Lesser Yellowlegs and got straight on to the bird from Lime kiln car park. This site is certainly starting to deliver when several great species already visiting the site this year. I can't wait to see what else drops in the future 

Lesser Yellowlegs

Black-throated Loon

Otterton Sewage works, Devon 

I had an hours look around the works and coastal path. At the works on arrival was a Male Cirl Bunting. Lots of singing Eurasian Skylark where a pleasure to listen to on the way to the coastal path. On the sea was a single Black-throated Loon and 2 Razorbill. Back at the works on my way back to the car was a Willow Warbler. 

Eurasian Spoonbill, Common Firecrest and Spotted Redshank

Bowling Green Marsh, Topsham, Devon

I decided after the rain had stopped to pop over and catch up with the Eurasian Spoonbill. It was on show in the middle of the reserve. The Spotted Redshank was also on show in front of the hide. A Male Common Pochard was at the back of the reserve. Plus the usual waders and Wildfowl. At the top of the road near the Bridge was a vocal and showy Common Firecrest. Nice to bump into Rob and Steph and have a catch.

Eurasian Spoonbill

Spotted Redshank 

Cettis Warbler

St Saviours Bridge, Ottery St Mary, Devon

It's my birthday today so went for a good walk along the Otter. Near the water treatment area was several Eurasian Blackcap and Common Chiffchaff. A pair of Eurasian Bullfinch and a showy and noisy Cetti's Warbler. Further down river were 7 Common Merganser and 2 Grey Wagtail.

Common Merganser (Female)

Grey Wagtail

Alpine Swift

Cockwood, Devon.

Having not been able to get out and experience the current Alpine Swift influx. I was pleased to have time this morning to head over to Dawlish direction as 4 were on show over the country park. On route I thought they had moved on due to messages on WhatsApp but I decided to keep going and was pleased I did as when I was going through Starcross, a further message came out that 2 were viewable at the ridge West of Cockwood. So I headed to the steps and was straight on to the 2 birds. Strongly a UK first for me having seen hundreds abroad. On the estuary was a bonus Spotted Redshank and in a stubble field south of Kenton were 2 Red-legged Partridge. 


Lower Otter Restoration Project, Devon 

I have been suffering with anxiety and depression for a few weeks but Ben Rowland got me out of the house for a few hours this morning. We were after yesterday's reported Male Garganey. We walked up the footpath from the White Bridge with no sign. Several others had also not see the bird. Whilst looking We spotted a few Water Pipit, Common Sandpiper, Common Greenshank and Common Snipe. Whilst up near the new viewing platforms a few people said that there were a few birders on the Garganey and they had been asked to let us know. So we promptly made our way back towards the White Bridge to be put straight on to the bird sleeping close to the path. 

And awesome morning as it really helped my mental health to be out in nature with great company. The Road to recovery is tough but I'm getting there. 

Garganey (Male)

Marsh Tit

Crowpits Covert, East Hill, Devon

I had a stroll along this area of East Hill this morning as another local birder Ben Rowland had seen Marsh Tit. I had to wait a little while but had awesome view if a few very vocal birds. Also on site were Eurasian Nuthatch, Eurasian Treecreeper and Redwing. Whilst I was waiting for the Marsh Tit I am sure I had a Lesser Redpoll call. It was rather distant and despite a bit of a search and wait and couldn't locate. 

Greater Scaup

Sowden Lane, Lympstone, Devon 

I wanted to look for the female Greater Scaup that has been on the river Exe for some time. Having read Matt Knotts blog it was clear it prefers this area. I couldn't locate the bird for some time but finally it popped up rather close. Also 6 Red-breasted Merganser and 3 Great Crested Grebe.

Maer Rocks, Exmouth, Devon 

I moved on in hope of seeing the 2 immature Common Eider. Again I had to put some time in before I picked them out very distantly. Also a single Common Scoter.

Greater Scaup (Female)

White-throated Dipper and Common Merganser

Cadhay Bridge, Ottery St Mary, Devon 

I decided to go to Cadhay Bridge for a late afternoon walk. In the wooded area was a Eurasian Treecreeper, a couple of Redwing were also about. On the river was a single female Common Merganser and 2 White-throated Dipper. 

Common Merganser

White-throated Dipper

White-throated Dipper

St Saviours Bridge, Ottery St Mary, Devon 

I had a quick look around this area after work. 1 White-throated Dipper, 1 Common Kingfisher, 1 Stock Dove and 1 Grey Wagtail.

Hooded Crow

Teignmouth, Devon 

I had a few hours to spare late morning so decided I wanted to see the Hooded Crow. I've not seen one in the UK for a while so I was hoping all week it would stay whilst I was working and unable to go. I arrived at Lower Point and walked so I could look back across the estuary towards the bridge. I set up my scope and couldn't believe that I had set it up straight on the bird. What luck! I enjoyed for 10 minutes or so and managed a rubbish record shot as it was rather distant. 

Hooded Crow

Cirl Bunting

Stantywell Farm, Otterton, Devon

I had an hour off work this pm as I needed a break. Having not seen Cirl Bunting for a while I thought this place would deliver. I walked down from the farm and staked out the usual field (with beehives in) with no joy. Loads of Common Linnet and Common Chaffinch around and Eurasian Skylark in the air. I had to start calling it quits and head home. At the first gate down front the farm I heard a familiar call. A bit of a scan and there was a Cirl Bunting, hiding rather well in the hedge. Just shows that despite their colour they can be well camouflaged when they want to. See if you can spot it.

Cirl Bunting (Male)

Common Goldeneye

Mudbank Lane, Exmouth, Devon 

I had to hang around in Exmouth for a few hours this afternoon. So I decided to watch here as the tide was dropping. Lots of species were on offer. There were quite a few Grey Plover, Common Ringed Plover, Red Knot and Sanderling, lots of Dunlin a small group of European Golden Plover flew up river. Several Red-breasted Merganser and Great Crested Grebe. I finally picked out a male Common Goldeneye over the far side of the estuary.

Maer Rocks, Exmouth, Devon 

I moved to Shelly Beach to look for the Black Redstart but couldn't locate so opted for Maer Rocks on as the tide would have dropped enough to look for Purple Sandpiper and was in luck with 7 on site.

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