October 2011


Wildlife Sightings

Sightings Archive

2011 Year List

 Day by Day

Early & Late Dates

Record Counts 

Report sightings



Monday 31st:


The drake American Wigeon remains in Shutterton Creek with large numbers of Wigeon. Elsewhere an Osprey was in the estuary and a Little Gull was offshore.



Sunday 30th:


The drake American Wigeon remains in Shutterton Creek with large numbers of Wigeon. The bird is best viewed distantly from the Back Path or hide there is no access to the Golf Course. Also in the estuary the Slavonian Grebe and 15 Red-breasted Merganser. Elsewhere a Dartford Warbler was along the Back Path and a Red-throated Diver was offshore.



Saturday 29th:


The drake American Wigeon remains in Shutterton Creek with counts from the estuary including 250 Dunlin, 220 Curlew, 140 Brent Geese, 44 Grey Plover, 40 Turnstone, 30 Knot, seven Black-tailed Godwit and five adult Mediterranean Gull. Overhead passage included 1200 Wood Pigeon, 20 Skylark, five Siskin and the first two Fieldfare of the year.



Friday 28th:


The drake American Wigeon was in Shutterton Creek with the Slavonian Grebe and female Scaup. Overhead cloudless skies meant passage overhead was mostly too high but counts included 70+ Chaffinch, 70+ Goldfinch, 50+ Skylark, about 20 Siskin and 16 Jackdaw.


Wigeon 28/10/11 © Simon Thurgood



Thursday 27th:


No news was received for today.



Wednesday 26th:


The drake American Wigeon was amongst 1200+ Wigeon, a female Long-tailed Duck also dropped into Shutterton Creek and the female Scaup was still present. Counts taken on dropping tide included 110+ Dunlin, 14 Black-tailed Godwit, 18 Turnstone, 14 Grey Plover, two Sanderling and two Little Grebe on estuary, whilst in bushes, there were five Blackcap and two Chiffchaff. Elsewhere passage overhead included a site record count of 31 Raven, 12 Siskin, at least five Jackdaw with single Jay, Rook and Swallow with an Eider offshore.



Tuesday 25th:


The drake American Wigeon was still present although difficult to pick out amongst 1350+ Wigeon also present the female Scaup. Elsewhere light passage overhead included 115+ Skylark, five Redpoll and a Swallow. Ringing news from a Lesser Black-backed Gull seen on Sunday, it was ringed in the nest at Langli, Blåvandshuk, Denmark on 01/07/2008. The only other sighting since ringing was at Ijmuiden Beach, Netherlands on 24/09/2009.



Monday 24th:


Seawatching in strong south-easterlies and rain was disappointing with a single Great Skua, single figures of Gannet and no Kittiwake in three hours early morning. From the hide the drake American Wigeon was still present along with the female Scaup.



Sunday 23rd:


The highlight was the site's third American Wigeon, but the second this year, a male viewable distantly in Shutterton Creek with Wigeon. Seawatching early morning gave six Great, three Pomarine and an Arctic Skua, 120+ Kittiwake and a Sandwich Tern. Counts from the estuary included 1863 Wigeon, 1520 Oystercatcher, 516 Curlew, 421 Great Black-backed Gull, 416 Teal, 163 Redshank and 128 Brent Geese. Elsewhere a female Merlin zipped past hide, the female Scaup and a Whimbrel were in the estuary and a Coal Tit was on site.


American Wigeon 23/10/11



Saturday 22nd:


Seawatching early morning recorded four Pomarine and a Great Skua and two lateish Sandwich Tern. Later two skuas flew high over the Golf Course, a single pale Arctic & juvenile Pomarine, which disappeared far up the estuary. From the hide, there was a female Scaup, an adult Yellow-legged Gull and 269 Great Black-backed Gull which included four ringed birds, one from Guernsey, one from Looe, Cornwall and two from North France.


Yellow-legged Gull 22/10/11 © Simon Thurgood


Friday 21st:


A Black-necked Grebe was off the seawall late morning with the Slavonian Grebe in the estuary. Also in the estuary 156 Brent Geese, 24 Knot, 11 Black-tailed Godwit, a Greenshank and a Whimbrel. Elsewhere a Dartford Warbler was on the Golf Course and overhead light passage included 50+ Skylark, 10+ Siskin, five Swallow, two Rook and a couple of Redpoll.



Thursday 20th:


A drake Scaup was in front of the hide with a female in the Bight, also in the estuary the Slavonian Grebe off Cockwood. Elsewhere the Dartford Warbler was again present along the Dune Ridge.



Tuesday 18th/Wednesday 19th:


No news was received.



Monday 17th:


As expected a return to normal with an eared owl sp distantly offshore the highlight. The estuary held 294 Curlew, 190 Redshank, 30 Dunlin and the resident Slavonian Grebe with 90 Great and two Lesser Black-backed Gull roosting on Finger Point. Overhead there were two more Great-spotted Woodpecker, with 16 Raven, nine Siskin and four Grey Wagtail. Elsewhere three Goldcrest, three Blackcap and 10 Long-tailed Tit were by the Main Pond and two juvenile Sandwich Tern were offshore.


Sunday 16th:


The obvious highlight was the second British record of SHORT-TOED EAGLE which passed overhead just before midday, before being watched as it lingered over Exmouth being mobbed by crows. Other sightings included a juvenile Spoonbill in front of the hide with 91 Dunlin, 67 Brent Geese (14 juvs), 32 Grey and four Ringed Plover, three Bar-tailed Godwit, the Slavonian Grebe and a juvenile Sandwich Tern. Elsewhere three Coal Tit flew along the Dune Ridge with c30 Skylark, many Siskin and seven Lesser Redpoll overhead.


Saturday 15th:


Highlights included the first Firecrest of the year in a Sallow by the windmill, also on Dune Ridge a Dartford Warbler at John's Watch. A Short-eared Owl was mobbed by Carrion Crow over Warren Point before heading to the Golf Course and finally landing in trees. Overhead there were at least two Lesser Redpoll with minimum counts of 43 Skylark, 85 Goldfinch, 61 Chaffinch, four Reed Bunting, two Grey Wagtail and three Great-spotted Woodpecker making day total at least five. Elsewhere 1180 Wigeon and a female Pintail were in Shutterton Creek with just 36 Brent Geese, 10+ Red-breasted Merganser and a Slavonian Grebe. Over high tide counts included 65 Dunlin, 16 Grey Plover and a flock of 10 Black-tailed Godwit over.

Friday 14th:

The strength of the southerly winds meant there was little of the hoped for 'vis mig' although 50+ Skylark, at least two Lesser Redpoll, a Jackdaw, a Grey Wagtail, a Swallow and a Mistle Thrush passed overhead. In the estuary there were 1036 Wigeon in Shutterton Creek but the wildfowl were flushed by a small boat 'Seahawk' before the Teal could be counted, also in the estuary 402 Curlew,126 Brent Geese, 29 Bar-tailed Godwit, two Mediterranean Gull and a Whimbrel. Elsewhere two Wheatear were on the Golf Course and three Goldcrest and a Chiffchaff were in the bushes.



Monday 10th - Thursday 13th:


No news was received.



Sunday 9th:


Seawatching this morning produced a Pomarine Skua south along with four Arctic Skua, another Merlin and a steady passage of auks. Overhead movement included 60+ Meadow Pipit, 40+ alba wagtail, seven Siskin, six Raven, six Swallow, a Rook and a Lesser Redpoll. Elsewhere the first Mistle Thrush of the autumn was in Dead Dolphin Wood and six House Sparrow dropped briefly into Greenland Lake. Counts from the estuary included 580+ Wigeon, 260+ Teal, 90+ Brent Geese, 20 Dunlin, seven Grey Plover, seven Sanderling at least five Black-tailed Godwit, three adult Mediterranean Gull and a Whimbrel.


Saturday 8th:


The first Merlin of the autumn was offshore early morning heading south  Also offshore 65 Common Scoter, six Sandwich Tern, two Red-throated Diver, an adult Mediterranean Gull, a female Eider, seven Pale-bellied Brent, four Red-breasted Merganser and a Great-crested Grebe. In the estuary there were 147 Dark-bellied Brent Geese with only nine juveniles also the Slavonian Grebe, just six Dunlin and three Ringed Plover. The bushes were blown out in the windy conditions but at least three Goldcrest were present with several Chiffchaff, overhead there was a steady passage of Meadow Pipit and alba Wagtail with two small groups of Skylark, c30 Swallow, a House Martin, several Siskin and six Lesser Redpoll.



Tuesday 4th - Friday 7th:


No news was received.



Monday 3rd:


The Barred Warbler was still present in Greenland Lake but was very elusive especially later in the day. Other records included 70+ Brent Geese, a Whitethroat, 10+ Stonechat and six Wheatear.



Sunday 2nd:


The Barred Warbler was still present in Greenland Lake but could be elusive, no other news was reported.



Barred Warbler 02/10/11 both © Simon Thurgood



Saturday 1st:


A Barred Warbler the eastern end of Greenland Lake was the obvious highlight, the eighth site record but the first since 2002. Two Spotted Redshank that dropped into the Saltmarsh were also a good record, the first multiple record on site since January 2002. Other records included 121 Dunlin, 57 Ringed and a Grey Plover, five Brent Geese and a first winter Mediterranean Gull.



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