November 2004



Tuesday 30th:


No news was received for today.



Monday 29th:


With a clear blue sky and a light northerly wind, birding was always going to be a struggle and so it was. Three Dartford Warbler can still be seen and heard, a single bird by the Dune Pond and two others on Warren Point. More interest from the Estuary with 245 Redshank, five Greenshank and a Spotted Redshank on the Railway Saltmarsh. Other birds included 62 Grey Plover, 36 Shelduck, 16 Red-breasted Merganser, Peregrine and a single Lesser Black-backed Gull. Offshore there were eight Razorbill, three Eider and two Red-throated Diver. Numbers of Carrion Crow continue to increase with 133 birds on site today.



Sunday 28th:


The Slavonian Grebe remains off Langstone Rock along with eight Red-throated Diver and two Eider. Wader counts included 205 Curlew in the Bight, 70 Bar-tailed Godwit on the Railway Saltmarsh and 44 Ringed Plover feeding in front of the hide. A Peregrine gave the Herring Gull a run around offshore but not before it had a go at a surprised Red-throated Diver. A high count of 89 Carrion Crow were on various sand bars in the Estuary.



Saturday 27th:


A flat calm sea provided excellent viewing conditions off Langstone Rock, at least 27 Red-throated Diver were present, the highest count for the recording area since 1956. Six Tufted Duck flew around offshore around midday before flying east, perhaps the same birds were watched flying west past Portland Bill at 10am. Also offshore a Slavonian and 15 Great-crested Grebe, four Eider, four Common Scoter and a Great Northern Diver which flew south. A count of 22 Lapwing in the Estuary was the highest this year for this declining species. Elsewhere on site a Treecreeper and two Dartford Warbler were still present and a large flock of 110 Jackdaw and 30 Rook flew over, this was not however a late autumn movement, they were just disturbed by a nearby shoot.



Friday 26th:


A single Swallow seen flying over the reserve today was the highlight, there have only been three later site records. Most of the interest remains offshore with eight Red-throated Diver and a resplendent looking male Goldeneye. An adult Mediterranean Gull was seen by the railway embankment. Other birds included 45 Great Black-backed Gull, 177 Black-headed Gull and 52 Bar-tailed Godwit in the Bight.



Thursday 25th:


No news was received for today.



Wednesday 24th:


Offshore there were 15 Razorbill, 10 Red-throated and a single Great Northern Diver. Elsewhere a Dartford Warbler is still present with 12 Meadow Pipit and nine Wren which were vocal on site. There is still no increase in Chiffchaff with just a single bird present. Seven Skylark flying northwest over the reserve were the only signs of passage.



Tuesday 23rd:


Two Slavonian Grebe were offshore with c20 Common Scoter, four Eider and two each of Razorbill and Guillemot. A Snipe was in Greenland Lake with 15 Meadow Pipit, five Reed Bunting and c25 Red-breasted Merganser elsewhere.



Monday 22nd:


A male Velvet Scoter and a single Red-throated Diver remained offshore.



Sunday 21st:


The cloak of winter has descended upon the Warren, although an increase to 12 Meadow Pipit suggested a hint of late autumn movement. The two Dartford Warbler were still around the Greenland lake area,  along with two Reed Bunting. Seawatching  produced the highlight of the day, in the form of a Little Auk flying east , two Velvet Scoter off the windmill with a third flying east were also new. Other seabirds included at least thirty Common Scoter, two Eider, five Red-throated Diver, three Great-crested Grebe, eight Razorbill and one Guillemot. Unusual for the Warren was a male Tufted Duck which flew over the sea in the company of a Pintail. Three Pale-bellied Brent were amongst the Dark-bellied Brent Goose in the Estuary.



Saturday 20th:


An overcast day with rain from first light. There were a few Chaffinch and Goldcrest in the bushes with three Chiffchaff and a Treecreeper. The only migrants noted were two Golden Plover overhead and two Song Thrush on Warren Point. Offshore from the seawall there were three Red-throated Diver, three Eider and two Great-crested Grebe. Good numbers of Shag were present off Warren Point and in the Estuary with at least 100 present, also in the Estuary, c40 Red-breasted Merganser, 50+ Ringed Plover and 37 Knot.



Friday 19th:


Four Red-throated Diver and a Slavonian Grebe were offshore.



Thursday 18th:


Wildfowl and wader counts today included; 450 Wigeon, 360 Teal, 190 Brent Goose,  35 Red-breasted Merganser, 190 Redshank, 150 Curlew, 132 Grey Plover, 20+ Knot, 19 Black-tailed Godwit, 18 Sanderling,  four Greenshank and six Little Egret. At sea only one Red-throated Diver, two Great-crested Grebe and seven Common Scoter could be found.



Wednesday 17th:


At high tide 200+ Redshank,  eight Greenshank and the Spotted Redshank were roosting on railway embankment. Offshore at least four Great Northern Diver, two Black-throated Diver and six Red-throated Diver were reported along with three Eider, two Great-crested Grebe, 14 Common Scoter and a Pintail. The Lesser Whitethroat was seen again briefly.


Tuesday 16th:


Offshore there were still 15 Red-throated Diver and six Great-crested Grebe. The Spotted Redshank was again present and three Dartford Warbler were on site. The Tawny Owl was heard calling at 4 o’clock in the morning.



Monday 15th:


Good viewing conditions offshore gave an exceptional early winter count of 16 Red-throated Diver, also there were 30 Common Scoter, 30 Razorbill, five Great-crested and the first Slavonian Grebe of the winter. Elsewhere on site, 180 Bar-tailed Godwit were counted with the usual waders and a single Chiffchaff was with five Goldcrest around the Main Pond.



Sunday 14th:


The only news received for today was a Spotted Redshank on Finger Point, the first record for the year and two Dartford Warbler, one in Greenland Lake and one on Warren Point.



Saturday 13th:


In the Estuary, there were 23 Red-breasted Merganser, eight Little Egret and seven Greenshank amongst thousands of waders and wildfowl. Two Dartford Warbler were along the Dune Ridge, with possibly a third on Warren Point. Despite the flat calm conditions, all that could be found offshore were two Red-throated Diver and five Common Scoter.



Friday 12th:


Two Red-throated Diver and 45 Common Scoter were offshore.  Two Siskin over were the only sign of migration . The Lesser Whitethroat is still on site, also in the bushes Great Spotted Woodpecker, Treecreeper and two Chiffchaff. Three Pintail were in the Estuary.



Thursday 11th:


Two Red-throated Diver and only 20 Common Scoter were offshore, along with a female Tufted Duck. The Merlin was still on site and was seen to chase a Kingfisher near the Main Pond. Late afternoon produced the birds of the day, Tawny Owl and Woodcock, the latter the first on site since October 1997. A Dartford Warbler was nearby at Lady’s Mile.



Wednesday 10th:


A single Red-throated Diver and 30 Common Scoter were offshore again. Also on site two adult Mediterranean Gull and a Merlin which showed very well at the hide.



Tuesday 9th:


Offshore today, single Red-throated Diver and only 30 Common Scoter.  Just off site, three Cirl and two Reed Bunting were in fields by Lady’s Mile, three Mediterranean Gull (two adult and one first-winter) roosted south of Langstone Rock.



Monday 8th:


Two Red-throated Diver and 130 Common Scoter were offshore, with  3 adult Mediterranean Gull, 20 Black-tailed Godwit and the juvenile Common Tern in the Estuary.  Off site, in the evening, five adult Mediterranean Gull roosted one kilometre south of Langstone Rock.

Sunday 7th:


The unexpected highlight was a female Mandarin with the Wigeon flock in Shutterton Creek (L Collins et al). This was the first record for the reserve and recording area. Also in the Estuary, 26 Black-tailed Godwit, two Greenshank and eight Little Egret. Offshore a Little Auk was present early morning, along with juvenile Common Tern, Red-necked Grebe, two adult Mediterranean Gull, three Red-throated and three Great Northern Diver. Several groups of waders and wildfowl were also moving offshore with single Pintail and Shoveler the most notable records. There was very little overhead passage with a handful of finches but two Golden Plover flew north and a single Stock Dove passed through. Two Dartford Warbler were on site, one on the Back Path and the other on Warren Point.



Saturday 6th:


A dull, overcast day but a noticeable improvement in the numbers of birds. Overhead passage included a Brambling with 50+ Chaffinch, a Grey Wagtail, 15 Skylark, 45 Jackdaw, 70+ Wood Pigeon and a single flock of 50+ Stock Dove.  Two female Cirl Bunting were around Greenland Lake early morning, feeding on the Dune Ridge with Linnet and Greenfinch, these flocks also attracted in two Merlin. The bushes held 15 Long-tailed Tit, three Chiffchaff, a Treecreeper and the injured Lesser Whitethroat, which was seen behind the Visitor Centre and becomes the first November record for the site. The flat calm conditions offshore made viewing conditions easier and a Red-necked Grebe was found along with five Red-throated and two Great Northern Diver, 32+ Common Scoter, two Eider and a Tufted Duck. The adult Mediterranean Gull was in Shutterton Creek along with at least two Greenshank. A single Black Redstart was seen briefly on several occasions along the base of the dunes feeding with Rock Pipit.



Friday 5th:


Today’s highlight was two redhead Goosander which flew in from the south east and flew off high west over Dawlish town.  Three Red-throated and a Great Northern Diver were offshore with a single Great-crested Grebe and only two Common Scoter.


Thursday 4th:


A Great Northern Diver was offshore and a Dartford Warbler remains at Greenland Lake.



Wednesday 3rd:


A Firecrest seen around the First Pond and in the Estuary an adult Mediterranean Gull and a juvenile Common Tern, the first November record for the recording area.



Tuesday 2nd:


Very light overhead migration this morning with less than 10 Meadow Pipit or Chaffinch but five Redwing, three Reed Bunting and a Stock Dove, also a flock of c30 duck flew south. This consisted of c20 Wigeon, 4+ Pintail and 8 Shoveler, the Shoveler broke off and circled the Bight and flew up river,  another Shoveler was later offshore. The bushes held a few thrushes and Goldcrest early on, with two Chiffchaff, a Blackcap and a Treecreeper.  A Red-throated Diver was offshore and a Greenshank in the Estuary.



Monday 1st:


Two new species for the year were recorded, a redhead Goosander flew north up the Estuary mid morning and a single Brambling passed over with 180 Chaffinch before 9am. Other visible migration was limited with a handful of Wood Pigeon and corvids, up to 40 Skylark moved through later in the morning. The Great Northern Diver was again offshore with 32 Common Scoter close in, with these were an immature Scaup and single Tufted Duck. The Dartford Warbler remains around Greenland Lake, but the best bird remains a mystery, a Richard’s Pipit was reported at midday, but no observers on site had met anyone who knew about this sighting!





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