Friday, 15 January 2021

Sibe Chiff

Siberian Chiffchaffs are inexplicably scarce in Exmouth, so I was delighted to find this one on Orcombe Point this afternoon. It was feeding with two collybita Chiffies in the hedgerow bordering the turnip field, along Gore Lane.

I managed to get out during a short break from work this afternoon. I was a bit taken aback at how good the top fields of Orcombe were. In the brief time I was there I recorded 1 Siberian Chiffchaff, 2 Chiffchaff, 7+ Stonechat, 29 Snipe, 3 Curlew, 30+ Meadow Pipit, 15+ Skylark, 14+ Linnet, 1 Rock Pipit, 1 Sparrowhawk and 1 Kestrel.

Off Mudbank - 3 Goldeneye (2 drakes), 9+ Great Crested Grebes, 2 Red-breasted Mergansers, 14 Pintail and 44+ Mallard.

One of seven Stonechats on Orcombe this afternoon. I don't remember a mid-winter count as high as this before.

Tuesday, 12 January 2021

Ring-necked Parakeets

Five Ring-necked Parakeets were showing off in Maer Valley, early this morning. Also there - 2 Firecrests, 1 Redwing, 2 Coal Tits, 2 Goldcrests, 5 Chiffchaffs and a flock of 14 Pied WagtailsA quick look off Maer Rocks produced 3 Red-throated Divers, small numbers of auks and just a single Purple Sandpiper alongside a Turnstone.

Sunday, 10 January 2021

Black Redstart

Another early morning stroll around Bystock reserve, in frosty conditions, produced Dartford Warbler, Marsh Tit, Treecreeper, 2 Siskins and just one Lesser Redpoll amongst a few other bits and pieces.

Not a lot to report today but off Mudbank - drake and female Goldeneye, 11 Red-breasted Mergansers, 13 Great Crested Grebes, 35 Dark-bellied Brent Geese, 16 Pintail, 10 Wigeon, 1 Greenshank, c3/400+ Dunlin and 70+ Mallard. Nearby the male Black Redstart was in the Shelly beach area.

I relocated yesterday's Dartford Warbler in a different part of the reserve this morning. A second individual was across the road on the edge of Withycombe Raleigh Common.

One of four Mistle Thrushes on the archery club playing fields. Three Redwing were also present.

 The recent icy, cold weather has forced the Shelly Beach Black Redstarts down into gardens, and consequently made them much more difficult to locate. I was fortunate to bump into this male this afternoon but it soon disappeared.

Saturday, 9 January 2021

Darts Black Brant

I stopped for a quick scan of the Darts Farm Brent flock, on my way to mum and dad's with Lu, and was chuffed to pick out the Black Brant (centre'ish) that I had in Exmouth the other day. I guessed it would be with this lot. It was still present when I stopped again on the way back, when these photos were taken.

The following photos were taken from the same spot on December 30th. The Brant wasn't in the flock then.

Note the pale (leucistic?) bird in the foreground.

Pale-bellied Brent.

A female Blackcap was lurking in Holly and Ivy at the end of our road this morning. Our neighbour, Neil, had a male in his garden this morning.

This Dartford Warbler was foraging in the Bystock reserve this morning. Note the colour rings. Also in Bystock this morning - 7 or 8 Lesser Redpoll, c30/40+ Redwing, 2 Nuthatch, 1 Sparrowhawk and a fly-over Yellowhammer.

Still only the one Marsh Tit on Wright's Lane but I love seeing it! I'd be interested to know if anyone sees more birds.

Friday, 8 January 2021

Great crested Grebe

This Great Crested Grebe has been hanging out in Exmouth marina for a while now. The reflections in the water offer the possibility of some lovely photos but a better camera is required...

Thursday, 7 January 2021


Greenshank - Shelly Beach. One of two present.

A count of 410+ Dark-bellied Brent Geese early this morning. No sign of yesterday's Black Brant. Also off there - 1 drake Teal, 2 Bar-tailed Godwits, 2 Ringed Plovers, good numbers of Dunlin, Grey Plover and Turnstone, 7 Red-breasted Mergansers, 1 Rock Pipit and 3 Redwings.
Off the seafront this evening - the regular Great Northern Diver and lots of Common Dolphins, spread out in small groups across the bay - a glass-like sea and a bit of a gull feeding frenzy helping the cause. At least 4 Purple Sandpipers on Maer Rocks on a brief look.