Thursday 25 August 2016

SPOONBILL on patch + Yellow Wag pic

Having not seen a Spoonbill on patch since March 2013 I was pleased to find one drifting high over Black Hole Marsh mid-evening on 25th. Spoonbill is a pretty decent bird for this patch, especially in Autumn; 2014 was the last record (as far as I'm aware) but that was a short stayer and again was in March. It was a case of looking in the right place at the right time - if I'd still been looking at anything at ground level or simply in a slightly different direction then I would have missed it due to the altitude. It's always possible to miss good birds - my Wryneck dip yesterday for example; it's best to be philosophical about such things. Talking of Wryneck, there were 3 in the West Bexington / Cogden area today rather than just the two I dipped! I did try to find one on patch today but had no success.

It was gradually getting dull when the Spoonbill flew over so I pinged a message to the locals + Twitter and then went searching for it in case I could relocate it for others to see before it was too dark. It flew North and seemed to be losing altitude over the Estuary so perhaps it went down near where the A3052 crosses the River Axe. It was worth a quick look at Colyford Common so I headed there but didn't see it again (although there was a Wood Sand on the larger scrape from the hide); it also hadn't come back to roost on Black Hole Marsh by nightfall - I waited til dark.

In the morning on 25th Seaton Marshes had 30+ Yellow Wags and a single Wheatear - one of the Wags perched up right next to me along the footpath to the hide! I heard it coming so stopped moving just in case it was going to stop; I didn't expect it to land quite so close though...

Most of the morning's excitement was at Beer Head, with some of the other patch birders having excellent counts of Tree Pipit, as well as a Pied Fly, Yellow Wags and Wheatears amongst other goodies.


  1. Great to follow your blog Tim.Just sort of discovered black hole marsh after hearing about the Least Sandpiper!
    I stay at Rousden when when we visit Devon/Dorset, with the caravan!Usually go to ayelsbere common and trinity reserve nearby!Will be keeping a close eye on your reports..cheers!

    1. Thanks Paul, it's a great spot here especially Aug - October! I'll keep the news coming.