Wednesday 3 May 2017

May Stuff


Two short visits to Orcombe today - pre-work at 0530 and post-work around 4'ish. Totals included 87+ Black-headed Gull offshore, 1 Common Scoter, 2 Great Crested Grebe, 5 Sandwich Tern, 17+ Dunlin and 1 Turnstone. Passerine migrants included 6+ Wheatear, 1 female Redstart, 1 Reed Warbler and, rather belatedly, my first Whinchat of the year.
A Dark-bellied Brent Goose was in the estuary and my first Swift of the year powered over, into a cool north-easterly, whilst Joel and I were having a kick-about in Carter park.
Yesterday my dawn visit to Orcombe produced my second Exmouth Cirl Bunting of the year - picked up on call as it flew low east along the cliff-top. I also recorded 2 Great Northern Diver (high west) and 1 Whimbrel.
Later in the afternoon I picked up a dark phase Arctic Skua lingering off the lifeboat station and there was a flock of c15+ Dunlin on Maer Rocks - possibly the same birds that were present again this afternoon.

Female Redstart - frequenting the track down to the Bristol Schools camp and adjacent hedgerows.

Whinchat - on the dung heap tonight with 5 Wheatear and a Rock Pipit

Rock Pipit - the dung heap has provided food for up to 3 local Rock Pipits for weeks now. Preferable to seaweed it seems.

Lackey Moth caterpillars. The adult, pictured below, is a regular to the moth trap.

There are still plenty of Brown-tail Moth webs on Blackthorn around Orcombe too.


  1. Great redstart count this year Matt. I'm missing out! Also nice to see Whinchat. Keep the reports coming please... Nick

  2. Hi Nick - yep double or triple what we usually get! It's been good for Groppers and Willow Warblers too but not great for other common stuff like hirundines and Yellow Wag. Roseate Tern should be with us any minute now. See you soon. Matt