Thurlestone Bay is a bird rich area of the South Hams (part of Devon). Having lost Thurlestone Marsh.earlier this year when it was drained agreed with Eric Wotton to redraw the patch boundry to include the Avon Estuary which will incorporate the very impressive South Efford Marsh. The 2016 year list will be amended to include species recorded there which had not been seen on the old patch Any comments you wish to make can be entered in the guestbook. Have posted an Annual Review for 2016 which can be accessed by clicking the link or via the appropriate heading in the Menu above The May review has been posted and I have transferred the MAY sightings to the archive 2017 section . Have retained a lot of photos from the last 3 years at the end of this months report at the bottom of this page Photo of PEC SANDPIPER taken by Alan Doidge Sept 2016 Some more of the fab photos from Alan Doidge of the bird of the year for Thurlestone- they are superb A nice record shot from James K of a BRAMBLING at Huxton Cross on 24 January 2017 2 more photos from Alan D - BARNACLE GOOSE at South Efford Marsh and a CATTLE EGRET in a field near Horswell House taken last weekend 2 more photos from Alan D of a WHITE FRONTED GOOSE and a 1w ICELAND GULL taken at the end of Feb at South Huish Marsh 2 more photos of the GLAUCOUS GULL taken by Alan D at South Huish Marsh 3 APRIL 2017 Photos of the SPOONBILL and CATTLE EGRET from James K and SPOONBILL by Steve Hopper at South Huish Marsh on 5 April Record shot of the PURPLE HERON on South Huish Marsh on 11 May 2017 - taken by James K 2 photos of CATTLE EGRETS at South Efford Marsh 13 July 2017 taken by Alan Doidge TUES 18 JULY A morning that started with sunshine , cloud gathered and by 12.00 Thunderstorms . A strong F 6/7 E wind . First an update on the breeding of CATTLE EGRET - Last night Eric and Rod Bone visited the site on the Avon where we suspected the breeding took place- They found a full breeding plumage adult and 2 juv's , also at this site 25+ LITTLE EGRET inc Juvs . Spent the morning sea watching from the car park from 08.15 - 12.40 , birds logged - 245 GANNET, 300 MANX SHEAWATER ( passage petered out at 11.15 ) 2 BALEARIC SHEARWATER ( flew east @ 09.05 ) , 1 SOOTY SHEARWATER ( flew west @ 12.08 ) 1 FULMAR, 4 KITTIWAKE , 42 BLACK H GULL , 1ad MED GULL ,11 SANDWICH TERN, 28 DUNLIN ( flew in off thesea in small flocks ) 8 SWIFT 100 COMMON SCOTER ( flocks of 50, 10, 40 ) At 15.45 went over to South Huish Marsh - 3 CATTLE EGRET ( 2juv and the non breeding adult ) 4 LITTLE EGRET, 5 DUNLIN , 3 SAND MARTIN MON 17 JULY A morning of sunny periods with a ENE F 3/4 wind Offshore 6 COMMON SCOTER -E , 7 GANNET, 1ad MED GULL , 30 BLACK H GULL . A RED L PARTRIDGE near the footbridge On South Huish Marsh - a F YELLOW WAGTAIL flew over . There were 3 CATTLE EGRET - 2juv , 1 ad ( non breeding plumage ) The 2 ads on Sunday were different to this one . At South Efford Marsh Eric had an ad MED GULL and 6 COMMON SANDPIPER SUN 16 JULY A very quiet morning with the only records being a family party of REED WARBLERand the 4 CATTLE EGRET at South HUISH MARSH . The 2 adult EGRETS were in full breeding plumage including orange legs - they flew off towards Bantham at 11.30. SAT 15 JULY - Juv CATTLE EGRET UPDATE An hours seawatch from the carpark from 07.00- 40 GANNET ( inc 1 flock of 15 ads ), 1ad MED GULL , 24 BLACK H GULL ( 1 juv ) 2 KITTIWAKE , 5 MANX SHEARWATER . Waders on the beach - 3 SANDERLING , 1 RINGED PLOVER Watched South huish marsh for an hour from 08.15- 1 REDSHANK , 1 DUNLIN , 4 SWIFT , 5 SAND MARTIN , 1 COOT . In the middle of the Marsh there were 2ad & 2 juv CATTLE EGRET definately a family party - adults still in full breeding plumage . At 13.00 /13.30 Roger Blackway photographed 1 juv At 14.25 2 CATTLE EGRET flew west over T'stone Marsh THURS / FRI 13/14 JULY Also on South Efford Marsh -1 WHIMBREL, 12 CURLEW , 2 GRRENSHANK , 1 COMMON SANDPIPER This morning on Warren Pt rocks 14 OYSTERCATCHER , 1 COMMON SANDPIPER An hours Garden Watch from 07.15 produced 31 species inc - 5 juv BLACKCAP, 1juv WHITETHROAT, REED WARBLER, BULLFINCH, REED BUNTING , 2 SAND MARTIN 20 SWALLOW , 16 SWIFT , 1 HOUSE MARTIN , 4 SONG THRUSH, 1 SPARROWHAWK . CATTLE EGRET - BREEDING IN DEVON ? They have been on the patch all year , numbers dropped off with 2 regularly seen , sometimes 3 . Birds have been watched flying over T'stone Marsh to/from Bantham / Avon Est. Visits to the LITTLE EGRET colony on the Avon Est found birds on site but no nest was located . On 13 JULY Eric found a juv along with 2 adults on SOUTH EFFORD MARSH - hopefuuly I will be able to post photos fron Alan Doidge later. This morning I had 2 adults flying over T'stone Marh at 07.45 towards Bantham , at 07.55 1 returned and landed on the back of a bullock , it was then joined by another . A visit to South Huish Marsh this morning 2 adults were feeding amongst the Highland Cattle I am not aware of any other sites near us reporting them . Whilst we cannot provide conclusive evidence to prove they bred locally it must go down as probable RINGING at SOUTH MILTON LEY Whilst I was in Majorca Alan held 3 rining sessions - THURS 13 JULY 13 CHIFFY, 13 REED WARBLER, 4 SEDGE WARBLER, 1 STONECHAT. The first returning WILLOW WARBLER was a retrap around the same date as last year Both GREEN and GREAT SP. WOODY on site SAT 8 JULY 2 BLACKCAP, 9 CHIFFY, 5 REED WARBLER, 6 SEDGE WARBLER, 1 SONG THRUSH THURS 6 JULY 23 CIFFY, 7 REED WARBLER, 2 BLACKCAP MAJORCA TRIP - 6-13 JULY A brief report on our latest trip with Graham & Daphne Daw . Stayed at the Picafort park Hotel at C'an Picafort in the noth west of the island . Very hot all week above 34c . Hired a car for 3 days . Managed a total of 82 species - highlights were - WED 12 July - late afternoon walk Graham had 4 AUDOINS GULL and 2 CORY'S SHEARWATER in the Bay TUES 11 JULY Drove to the FORMENTOR area - 3 ELANORAS FALCON, 3 RAVEN, PEREGRINE , 3 CRAG MARTIN , PALLID SWIFT , At one of the large lakes near Alcudia 30 + COMMON TERN , 1 MARSH HARRIER , 1 PURPLE HERON . Near POLLENCA a m RED B SHRIKE Afternoon visit to the Depudora Works at the back of Albufera Marsh - 4 WOOD SANDPIPER, 3 GREEN SANDPIPER, 2 COMMON SANDPIPER, 90 + BLACK WINGED STILT, 4 COMMON TERN, 10 YELLOW WAGTAIL, ,6 MARSH HARRIER , 1 OSPREY, 1 PURPLE SWAMPHEN, , 3 BEE EATER, 5 HOOPOE MON 10 JULY Drove to the Cuber Reservoir- at Sa Pobla a BOOTED EAGLE . Around the Res - 10 BLACK VULTURE , 1 EGYPTION VULTURE , 2 RAVEN , 2 SERIN SUN 9 JULY Drove to the SALINAS De LEVANTE in the south of the island - enroute 2 THELKLA LARK , 2 RED KITE At the Salt Pans at least 200 + breeding AVOCET( we could only see 30% of the water , 25 BLACK W STILT, 50 KENTISH PLOVER, 4 REDSHANK , 1 RUFF , 1 CURLEW, 1 SPOONBILL , 1 OSPREY , 50+ SHELDUCK At Porto Colom - 5 PALLID SWIFT SAT 8 JULY - a morning visit to ALBUFERA MARSH , water levels very low but still interesting 2 RED C POCHARD , 1m GADWALL, a very active heronry contained - 10 SQUACCO HERON , 50+ LITTLE EGRET,35+ CATTLE EGRET, 3 NIGHT HERON , 6 GLOSSY IBIS , 1 PURPLE HERON , several GREY HERON . 10 PURPLE SWAMPHEN . 30 + BLACK W STILT , 1 STONE CURLEW , 1 WHIMBREL, 30 + KENTISH PLOVER , 10 LITTLE RINGED PLOVER, 5 AVOCET. Warblers were - GREAT REED , MOUSTACHED , CETTIS ,NIGHTINGALE , CITTING ZISTICOLA 1 WOODCHAT SHRIKE , 5 BEE EATER, YELLOW WAGTAIL Early evening atthe Hotel 300 + SWIFT , 4 AUDOINS GULL FRI 7 JULY - around the Hotel and a small nearby lagoon - 1 LITTLE GREBE , BEE EATER , SARDINIAN WARBLER, HOOPOE , FIRECREST , SPOTTED FLY . THURS 6 JULY Another sunny morning with a light NE wind . An hours Garden watch from 08.00 produced 32 species inc - JAY, SPARROWHAWK, HERON , 50 + LINNET, GREAT SP and GREEN WOODY , 4 BLACKCAP , 1 CHIFFY . 4 LONG T TIT Noticeable Hirundine movement to NW - 85 SWALLOW, 7 HOUSE MARTIN and 66 SWIFT - no large flocks just steady parties of up to 5 birds WED 5 JULY A nice warm and sunny morning with a light E breeze . A 45min Garden watch from 07.30 produced 28 species inc - 2 GREEN WOODY, 1 GREAT SP WOODY, REED BUNTING , 6 BLACKCAP , 4 CHIFFY , 14 SWIFT A short visit to South Huish Marsh - 1 CATTLE EGRET. 1ad MED GULL , 8 BLACK H GULL , 3 GANNET flew east Along the tidal road at Aveton Gifford - 18 CURLEW , 3 COMMON SANDPIPER , 2 SPOTTED FLY , MISTLE THRUSH, NUTHATCH Off on our travels on Thurs with Graham and Daphne Daw . Next patch update will be 14 July TUES 4 JULY An early morning garden watch at 07.15 only lasted 45 mins due to mist and steady drizzle=- 23 species inc juv CIRL BUNTING , 8 CHIFFY, 4 juv BLACKCAP, REED and SEDGE WARBLER, SONG THRUSH Started at South Huish Marsh at 08.45 - 2 CATTLE EGRET, 2 DUNLIN, 20+ SWALLOW, 30+ HOUSE MARTIN, 5 SAND MARTIN, 4 SWIFT.At 11.30 a F YELLOW WAGTAIL flew over the Marsh Settled down for a 2.5 hrs seawatch at 10.00 as the mist and light rain had moved on - very rewarding for early July - 3 ad MED GULL, 17 BLACK H GULL, 15 MANX SHEARWATER, 2 FULMAR, 3 LITTLE TERN ( flew west at 10.55 ) , 1 RINGED PLOVER, a mixed flock of 22 DUNLIN and SANDERLING flew through , 4 COMMON SCOTER - E and only 1 GANNET , 2 KITTIWAKE MON 3 JULY Whilst I was away at the Ampthill music festval last w/end reports rec'd were - South Huish Marsh - 2 CATTLE EGRET, 2 WHIMBREL, Eric - South Efford marsh - 8 CURLEW , 2 REDSHANK, 1 GREENSHANK, SPARROWHAWK, NUTHATCH, BULLFINCH Will be out on the patch in the morning . THURS 29 JUNE Another very cloudy morning but at least the rain held off after 08.30. A brisk F3/4 ENE wind . Managed an hours seawatch from the cafe at 09.15 - 115 GANNET , 225 MANX SHEARWATER, 1 FULMAR , 3 SANDWICH TERN - almost all flying west. At 11.55 picked up 2 BALEARIC SHEARWATER flying east . On South Huish Marsh - 1 BLACK T GODWIT, at 12.10 a KNOT flew in - judging by the amont of summer plumage still showing this is a different bird to yesterdays .2 CATTLE EGRET and 2 LITTLE EGRET, 3 BLACK H GULL. At 12.30 a single flock of 200+ SWIFT flew over south - largest flock this year . Also feeding were 50+ HOUSE MARTIN and 10 SAND MARTIN. 3 TEAL were the first returning birds At South Efford Marsh Dave and Eric report - 6 REDSHANK, 3 s/pl BLACK T GODWIT, 15 BLACK H GULL and the first juv . This morning a RED L PARTRIDGE took up residence in our small veg plot Next update will be Tues 4 July WED 28 JUNE Heavy rain all morning and very poor offshore viz meant only a short visit to South Huish marsh made - result a year tick - an ad KNOT ( 185 ) still showing signs of s/pl , 2 CATTLE EGRET still showing well , 3ad BLACK H GULL, 3 SAND MARTIN , 25 HOUSE MARTIN, 15 PIED WAGTAIL ( only 2 ad ) This is my first June record for KNOT For information the days of free car parking in Bobs Car Park are about to come to an end - signs put up requesting a payment of £3 when the Gastro Bus on site . Have looked at more coastal sites for yesterday , it appears there was a big passage of COMMON SCOTER along the East coast - Flamborough Head - 1333, Filey Brigg - 1998 and Whitburn 2920 - all these flying north TUES 27 JUNE Started an eventful day with a 45 min Garden Watch which produced in cloudy and calm coditions 29 species inc - 2 CHIFFY, 4juv BLACKCAP, REED and SEDGE WARBLER, and at 08.10 a CATTLE EGRET flew west . Joined this morning by Graham and for the sea watch Tony on holiday from Kent - With a flat calm sea and offshore viz not perfect the surprise was a total of 236 COMMON SCOTER ( apart from 10 allflew west ) single flocks of 70. 75 and 70 , the first flock landed on the sea , the other 2 flew past at .09.20 & 09.45 . Also a KITTIWAKE, 36 GANNET and 10 MANX SHEARWATER . 15 OYSTERCATCHER on the rocks . On to South Huish Marsh where there was evidence of returning wader passage with a DUNLIN and an adult LITTLE RINGED PLOVER . 2 CATTLE EGRET still. In the deepest part of the Marsh a m TUFTED DUCK ( 184 ) at last added to the year list . Looking through the GULLS came across an ad CASPIAN GULL - second patch record this year. The COMMON SCOTER day total is a patch June record - the highest so far this year was 60 . Yesterday Alan carried out his first ringing session - a total of 54 birds ringed( 46 Juvs and 8 aduls )-inc. 15 REED WARBLER, 8 SEDGE WARBLER, 9 CHIFFY, 2 BLACKCAP, 1 BULLFINCH, he also had 48 SWIFT which flew east at 15.00 SUN 25 JUNE Initially a cloudy morning with light drizzle later clearing with short sunny periods .A brisk F 5/6 W wind . Nat . trust holding their Rock Water festivities so lots of visitors . A short seawatch produced - 6 KITTIWAKE, 3 SANDWICH TERN, 20 GANNET , 4 ad BLACK H GULL On South Huish marsh still the 2 CATTLE EGRET, 2 LITTLE EGRET, 2 SHELDUCK, 3 COOT . At Belvide Res yesterday Steve had 3 1s SABINES GULL- a remarkable record for an inland water and the time of the year - there is a link at the side of this page , well worth a look also photo . That is top class local patch reward for the hours he puts in - still only got 6 points on the local patch challenge ! FRI 23 JUNE After a very quiet day yesterday a little more around this morning . Started 100% cloud with a brisk F 5/6 W wind In a 2hr seawatch from the car park - 35 GANNET, 4 MANX SHEARWATER, 2 KITTIWAKE, 1 AUK, 6ad BLACK H GULL , 2 OYSTERCATCHER on the rocks . On South Huish Marsh 2 CATTLE EGRET still, 2 SHELDUCK, 3 COOT 2 WHITETHROAT , 2 CHIFFY, 4 STONECHAT, , at least 10juv PIED WAGTAIL . Amongst a flock of 50 + Gulls were 4 LESSER B B GULL, 3 GREAT BB GULL, and an ad YELLOW L GULL ( first june record for a few years ) WED 21 JUNE Back on the patch this morning , met up with Graham - another sunny and warm day , hazy offshore with a F5/6 E wind early The surprise this morning was a 1st summer GREAT NORTHERN DIVER feeding close inshore from 09.00-10.15 . This is certainly the latest June record ( only 3 in the last 7 years ). Also offshore 14 GANNET, 1 SANDWICH TERN, 4 BLACK H GULL , 5 SWIFT ( flew south ) On South Huish marsh 2 CATTLE EGRET, amongst the hirundines 2 SAND MARTIN .1m REED BUNTING Very little to report whist I was away, Hobby over Aveton Gifford the best . Although outside the patch a vey interesting photo from Terry Fenton on holiday from Glos. A male RED B Shrike he saw on Portlemouth Down - just inland from Mill Bay on 14 June FRI 16 JUNE Another sunny day although did start out with some cloud , a brisk F3/4 W wind Info received from James K of 2 records at Hope Cove - Mon 5.June- At 19.50 a dp ARCTIC SKUA flew east round Bolt Tail .. On SAT 10 June driving into Inner Hope on the road from Bolberry a HAWFINCH ( 183 ) feeding on the road - i will need info from Bob as to when the last record was - certainly not in the last 10 years On South Huish Marsh yesterday 2 CATTLE EGRET , still feeding with the horses this morning , also 2 LITTLE EGRET, 1 BLACK T GODWIT, 2 WHITETHROAT , 1m 4 juv STONECHAT , 2 flocks of SWIFT 15 flew through . In the surrounding fields a flock of over 500 CORVID feeding after silage collected By the footbridge - 1m REED BUNTING , 20+ HOUSE SPARROW On the rocks 11 OYSTERCATCHER Offshore a few GANNET, 1 FULMAR. At 08.55 a CATTLE EGRET flew over the car park towards the Avon estuary Next update will be Wed WED 14 JUNE A glorious sunny morning with only a light breeze . An hours Garden watch from 07.45 produced 33 species including - 25 SWIFT, HOUSE MARTIN , SWALLOW. JAY, a CATTLE EGRET flew east at 07.55, a number of Warblers - REED , SEDGE , WHITETHROAT, BLACKCAP, CHIFFY, first small flock of 14 STARLING, HERON , 2 SANDWICH TERN flew east Decided visits to 2 local valley would be more interesting in these conditions , starting with Hatch Bridge - 2 NUTHATCH, 3 GOLDCREST, 2 GREY WAGTAIL, , GREAT SP WOODY, COAL TIT , 2 WILLOW WARBLER, 3 BLACKCAP, 3 CHIFFY.1 WHITETHROAT Then on to Buckland Valley - 12 HOUSE MARTIN , 4 SWALLOW, 1 WHITETHROAT, CHIFFY, 2 BLACKCAP, 1 SPOTTED FLY, 1 GREEN WOODY , 2 RED L PARTRIDGE TUES 13 JUNE After a weekend spent watching RED KITE at Wallingford back on the patch today, met up with Graham A very nice sunny day with only a light W breeze ,. Offshore - 15 GANNET, 2 SANDWICH TERN, 1 KITTIWAKE By the footbridge - 3juv STONECHAT, 2 WHITETHROAT, REED WARBLER and CHIFFY On South Huish Marsh 2 resident CATTLE EGRET with another flying in at 10.15 and flew back west at 11.30, 1ad 3juv STONECHAT, 1 WHITETHROAT, 12 STARLING, 2 RAVEN , 9 SWIFT, SEDGE WARBLER Whist Eric was relaxing in his garden at 11.20 he had a RED KITE fly over . Whist at a steam fair managed to buy a pristine copy of Birds of the Banbury area 1972-1981, very interesting reading . If anyone reading the blog has an interest in that area if they contact me i am happy to pass this piece of ornithological history on ,. FRI 9 JUNE Late start after watching the Election into the early hours . A morning of sunny periods with a W wind F 6/7 Short seawatch produced - 14 GANNET, 10 KITTIWAKE , 1 SANDWICH TERN , 1 STORM PETREL ( flew west at 09.30 ) On South Huish Marsh only 1 CATTLE EGRET . 7 juv STONECHAT on the fences. Nick T rang this afternoon a resident of South Milton found an oiled GUILLEMOT on the beach - taken into care . Please keep an eye out for any other casualties THURS 8 JUNE Another morning where the weather did not reflect the time of the year - heavy rain until 10.30 , poor offshore viz , Wind SSW 7 . Managed a 2hr seawatch from 10.30 - Further east good numbers of STORM PETREL, I only recorded 2 ( both east at 11.40 & 11.48 ) ( 181 ) , always a difficult bird to see in the Bay , also 31 GANNET, 6 FULMAR, 285 MANX SHEARWATER , 1 BLACK H GULL ( 1s )and 1 COMMON GULL On South Huish Marsh 3 CATTLE EGRET WED 7 JUNE A morning of sunny periods with a brisk W F4/5 wind . In 30 mins from the carpark and not recording even 1 GANNET decided on a change of venue , picked up Eric and covered the Aveton Gifford area - tidal road and surrounding woods and then up to Hatch Bridge - main highlights - 2 SPOTTED FLY , Several COAL TIT and JAY, BULLFINCH, WHITETHROAT, GREAT Sp WOODY , 3 GREY WAGTAIL , 3 CHIFFY. TUES 6 JUNE A morning of very heavy squally showers interspersed with some sunny periods . Unusually for June winds gusting at least to F8 W. Biggest problem was to find a spot where a sope could be used and shelter from the showers . Joined by Graham and for part of the morning Terry . Seawatching from 09.00 t0 12.15 produced - my first June record of a SOOTY SHEARWATER ( 181 ) which flew east reasonably close in at 10.20 .130 MANX SHEARWATER, 150 GANNET, 7 FULMAR, 3 KITTIWAKE . , 2 AUKS On South Huish marsh 2 CATTLE EGRET feeding amongst the Highland Cattle MON 5 JUNE With forecast of strong winds and rain holding off until 10.00 was in Bobs car park for 07.15 , rough seas , SSW F7/8 and poor offshore viz . Raining early with a brief dry spell from 08.00-09.15 42 GANNET, 3 FULMAR, 31 MANX SHEARWATER, 3 COMMON SCOTER, 3 KITTIWAKE ,logged. Returned at 17.00 wind gusting F8/9 still raing , in 20 mins 18 GANNET, 1 FULMAR . Yesterday before the rain only a few GANNET offshore whilst on South Huish Marsh still 1 CATTLE EGRET SAT 3 JUNE After yesterdays rain during the morning and again in the afternoon , today started nice and sunny with a light breeze - Did an hours Garden watch from 07.30 which produced the highest total at 37 for some months . Amongst the highlights were - a CATTLE EGRET which flew west at 07.35 . , 14 Swift . a GREEN WOODY, REED and SEDGE WARBLER, BLACKCAP, CHIFFY, WHITETHROAT, 14 SWALLOW, only1 HOUSE MARTIN, Ad and Juv SONG THRUSH, CIRL BUNTING, SPARROWHAWK and KESTREL, RED L PARTRIDGE. SOME UNSEASONAL WEATHER FOR THE NEXT FEW DAYS WITH SOME RAIN AND STRONG WINDS, seawatching could be worthwhile THURS 1 JUNE A lovely sunny day once the mist cleared by 08.00, only a light variable breeze Started the new month with an hours garden watch from 07.15, a total of 36 species recorded including - SWALLOW, SWIFT, HOUSE MARTIN, COAL TIT , LONG T TIT, SKYLARK, LITTLE EGRET, REED BUNTING , CIRL BUNTING, BLACKCAP, CHIFFY, WHITETHROAT, SEDGE & REED WARBLER, RED L PARTRIDGE On Yarmer Beach - 9 OYSTERCATCHER, 2 DUNLIN, 2 SANDERLING, 1 WHIMBREL Offshore a few GANNET, FULMAR, 9 COMMON SCOTER On South Huish Marsh - 1 CATTLE EGRET ( now been recorded in every month this yaer ) 4 LITTLE EGRET, 1m TEAL , 2 SHELDUCK with 4 young . Along the lanes and Buckland Valley - 1 YELLOWHAMMER,
Here's where you can enter in text. Feel free to edit, move, delete or add a different page element.