Sunday, 10 November 2013

Back for a Birding Weekend

I was back from university this weekend, so I tried to fit in as much birding as possible. On Saturday, I decided to take a look offshore from Teignmouth for an hour in the morning in the hope of seeing some Great Northern Divers, which have managed to completely evade me for the year so far! I soon found two together fairly far offshore and then another a little further north. There wasn't much else on the move, only one Red-throated Diver south, two Common Scoter on the sea, and the Bonaparte's Gull which had apparently just taken a trip to Dawlish Warren.

Today brought nice clear calm conditions perfect for Wood Pigeon migration. I had a quick look out from my house in Newton Abbot at about 9am, and in just 10 minutes, saw roughly 1500 Wood Pigeons fly south over Teignmouth in a continuous stream of large flocks.

At 10:30 I met up with Will and we headed out to the estuary. We first checked Luxton pond which held six Teal and a Little Grebe. Then we counted the birds at Flow Point. There was a Flounder fishing festival on today and the estuary was lined with lots and lots of fishermen, so the birds all had to roost on the railway wall. Counts were, 16 Redshank, 319 Oystercatchers, 56 Curlew, 4 Turnstone, 8 Ringed Plover, 6 Red-breasted Merganser and 2 Common Sandpipers.

Next we moved to Passage House where the tide was beginning to fall. Here there were 12 Greenshank, 9 Lapwing, 1 Kingfisher, 15 Mute Swan, 6 Shelduck, and a further 58 Redshank, 15 Oystercatcher, 56 Curlew, 3 Common Sandpipers and 6 Little Grebe. As the tide dropped, a total of 25 Snipe were enticed out to feed along the water's edge - always a lovely sight!


Our final visit of the day was to Decoy lake where Will's Scaup and Gadwall were chilling out with the Tufties in the fading light. A nice end to a busy weekends birding.

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