SEVERNSIDE BIRDS























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September is one of the most exciting months to visit Severnside. The total of 195 species seen at least once in this month, is the third highest in the year. It is the time when most of the summer visitors will depart and a good selection of early winter visitors will arrive towards the end of the month. Any West or South West gales will produce the usual seabirds but the more exotic have occurred; Sooty Shearwater (1974), Balearic Shearwater (1988), Long-tailed Skua, Sabine’s Gull. Other rarities that have appeared in September include; Red-crested Pochard (2 in 1996), White Storks (2010), Glossy Ibis (2010), Cattle Egret (2012), Great White Egret (2013, 2016), Crane (2014), Honey Buzzard (1996), Dotterel (1974), Kentish Plover (2006), White-rumped Sandpiper (1985), Pectoral Sandpiper (1998, 2006, 2008, 2014, 2016), Buff-breasted Sandpiper (1989, 2003), Terek Sandpiper (1986), Semipalmated Sandpiper (2009), Red-rumped Swallow (1977), Wryneck (2003, 2010, 2015) and Rose-coloured Starling (2004). Local rarities have included pale-bellied Brent Geese, Osprey, Spoonbill (2008, 2011), Nightjar (2006, 2013), Hawfinch (1998), Willow Tit (1992), Nightingale (1999), Lapland Bunting and Ring Ouzel.  

October 2017



31st October
A quiet end to the month with just a Spotted Redshank, 120 Black-tailed Godwits, 25+ Knot, 87 Lapwing, 102 Canada Geese, 9 Tufted Duck, 20+ Shoveler, 2 Stonechats and a Raven reported from Pilning Wetland.

30th October
A frosty dawn, then crisp and sunny most of the day. A drake Mandarin was found on Pilning Wetland this morning (only the 2nd Severnside record, last recorded March 2006). Other reports from here and Northwick Warth involved a Spotted Redshank, 20 Knot, 90 Black-tailed Godwits, 25 Snipe, 70 Turnstones, 100+ Redshank, 17 Ringed Plover, 80 Dunlin, 2 Little Egrets, 5 Grey Herons, 3+ Water Rails, 100 Canada Geese, 8 Tufted Duck, 17 Shoveler, 300 Wigeon, a male Merlin, a female Sparrowhawk, a Kestrel, 2 Stonechats, 2 Brambling, 2 Siskins, a Redpoll and 3 Coal Tits. Another Little Egret was seen at Severn Beach.

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                                                                                        Merlin, Northwick Warth 30.10.17

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                                                                                            Mandarin, Pilning Wetland 30.10.17

29th October
A cooler day with a moderate wind veering West to North during the morning. The bird of the day was a Woodlark that flew North East over New Passage at 09.40. Other visible migrants here this morning included 360 Redwing, 140 Fieldfare, 5 Mistle Thrushes, 100+ Chaffinch, 5 Bullfinch, 2 Brambling, 11 Siskins, 12 Long-tailed Tits and a high flying Goldcrest. Other reports from the Northwick Warth area involved the Spotted Redshank, 90+ Redshank, 140 Black-tailed Godwits, 40 Lapwing, 8 Knot, single Common Sandpiper and Little Egret, 6 Cormorants, 140 Canada Geese, 300 Wigeon, 11 Shoveler, 2 hunting Peregrines causing havoc, 2 Kestrel and 2 Ravens. Reports from the Severn Beach shore included 2 Stonechats, 2 Grey Wagtails, 2 Redpolls and a Kestrel and nearby 10 Gadwall, single Water Rail and Cetti’s Warbler were reported at the Orchard Pools. Another 2 Stonechats were seen at Aust Warth.

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                                                                                         Kestrel, New Passage 29.10.17

28th October
Another good bird day with the first October and only 5th record of Shorelark being found on the dry, weed seed covered flash on Northwick Warth. Other reports from the Northwick Warth/Pilning Wetland area included a flighty Spotted Redshank, 200 Black-tailed Godwits, 8 Knot, 45 Turnstones, a Snipe, a Little Egret, 4 Grey Herons, 2+ Water Rails, 144 Canada Geese, 330+ Wigeon, 11 Shoveler, a Water Pipit, 2 Ravens, 2 Kestrels, a Merlin and fly over migrants including 130 Fieldfare, 400+ Redwings, Chaffinches, Reed Buntings, Skylarks, Bullfinches, 10 Long-tailed Tits, 420 Jackdaws, 5 Redpoll, 2 Brambling and 4 Siskin. Click on the Shorelark below for a short video on Youtube.

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                                                                                     Shorelark, Northwick Warth 28.10.17

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                                                                                      Shorelark, Northwick Warth 28.10.17

27th October
Combined reports from the Northwick Warth/Pilning Wetland involved a Spotted Redshank, 200+ Black-tailed Godwits, 250 Dunlin, a Little Egret, 4 Grey Herons, 5 Water Rails, 132 Canada Geese, 330 Wigeon, 2 Peregrines, a Wheatear, 6 Stonechats and 4 Brambling. A high tide visit to Severn Beach produced 9 Wigeon, 6 Teal, 5 Shelduck, 80 Curlew, 50 Turnstones, 7 Stonechats, 3 Rock Pipits, 3 Redpolls and a Sparrowhawk.

26th October
A brief early morning visit to New Passage/Pilning Wetland produced a Spotted Redshank, 200+ Black-tailed Godwits, 90 Redshank, 300+ Wigeon, a Little Egret plus overhead visible migrants including 12 Redwing, Chaffinches, Skylarks, Pied Wagtails and Redpoll. Another 3 Redpolls were seen heading South over Severn Beach.

25th October
Combined reports from the Pilning Wetland/Northwick Warth/New Passage area involved a Green Sandpiper, the first Jack Snipe of the autumn feeding with 5 Snipe (on rear wader pool), 80 Black-tailed Godwits, 15 Knot, 40 Lapwing, 200 Dunlin, 95 Redshank, a 1st winter Mediterranean Gull, 2 Little Egrets, 2 Water Rail, 85 Canada Geese, 4 Stonechats, 3 Coal Tits, 2 Siskin, 2 Redpoll, single Water Pipit and Wheatear. Another 2 Snipe, 230 Dunlin, 6 Stonechats, single Raven, Cetti’s Warbler, Kestrel and Wheatear were reported at Aust Warth.

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                                                                                      Mediterranean Gull, New Passage 25.10.17

24th October
Much of the same today with the Wigeon and Black-tailed Godwit flocks being seen from New Passage and a steady but light movement of Finches heading South.

23rd October
A less windy day and a good selection seen in the Pilning Wetland/Northwick Warth area today including a Spotted Redshank, 16 Knot, 380+ Black-tailed Godwits, 350+ Dunlin, 95 Redshank, 40 Lapwing, 80 Oystercatchers, 85 Curlew, 2 Little Egrets, 2 Grey Heron, a Water Rail, 48 Canada Geese, 300+ Wigeon, 160 Teal, 18 Shoveler, 20+ Gadwall, a Tufted Duck, a 1st winter Mediterranean Gull, 2 Stonechats, a Water Pipit and overhead visible migrants heading South East included 15 Fieldfares, Redpoll, Reed Buntings, Chaffinches, Meadow Pipits, Skylarks and a Great Spotted Woodpecker. A Wheatear and 3 Rock Pipits were seen at Severn Beach. Ringing report; An adult colour ringed Black-headed Gull (Black 2DFJ on Yellow ring) seen on Pilning Wetland today was originally ringed as at least a 2nd year bird on Rainham Tip, Greater London on 22.2.14)


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                                                                                     Spotted Redshank, Pilning Wetland 23.10.17

22nd October
A bright and breezy day. Most interest was again at Severn Beach where single 1st winter Sabine’s Gull, Great Skua, Guillemot, 1st winter Little Gull and adult Kittiwake, 90+ Turnstones, 6 Ringed Plover, a Bar-tailed Godwit, a Peregrine, 3 Rock Pipits and a flock of 25 Siskins were seen. At least 180 Wigeon were seen at New Passage.

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                                                                           Guillemot, Severn Beach 22.10.17  © Brian Thompson

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                                                                          Sabine’s Gull, Severn Beach 22.10.17  © Brian Thompson

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                                                                        Sabine’s Gull, Severn Beach 22.10.17  © Brian Thompson

21st October
An increasingly wet and windy day. The first October record of Great Northern Diver, a Leach’s Petrel, 5 Great Skuas, single Guillemot and Common Tern were reported at Severn Beach.

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                                                   Great Northern Diver, Severn Beach 21.10.17  © Aravind Ramesh

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                                                                                          Great Skua, Severn Beach 21.10.17

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                                                                                     Common Tern, Severn Beach 21.10.17

20th October
A Water Pipit was seen at Northwick Warth and a late Swift Sp. was seen over the Pines at New Passage at dusk. A Red Kite was seen at Aust Warth. At least 22 Gadwall, single Water Rail, Kingfisher and Sparrowhawk were reported at the Orchard Pools in Severn.Beach. My last 45 minutes on St.Agnes today proved to be exciting when a Yellow-billed Cuckoo was found exhausted in a garden.

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                                                       Yellow-billed Cuckoo, St. Agnes, Isles of Scilly 20.10.17  

19th October
No reports were received today.

18th October
Two Bar-tailed Godwits, a Common Sandpiper, 155 Redshank, 19 Dunlin, 2 Stonechats, 3 Wheatears, single Water Rail, Coal Tit, Kingfisher and Cetti’s Warbler were reported from the Northwick Warth area.

17th October
At least 2 Leach’s Petrels and a Common Scoter were seen from Severn Beach this morning.

16th October
A windy day resulting from ex hurricane Ophelia produced the first Pomarine Skua in over 2 years and a Leach’s Petrel off Severn Beach on the evening high tide.

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                                                          Pomarine Skua, Severn Beach 16.10.17  © Dan White

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                                                                                Leach’s Petrel, Severn Beach 16.10.17  © Dan White

15th October
The usual Spotted Redshank, Ruff, 85 Redshank, 32 Lapwing, 2 Stonechats, Peregrine and Sparrowhawk were reported from the Northwick Warth area.

14th October
A long overdue and first Severnside record of Common Rosefinch was seen and heard by 3 lucky observers over Northwick Warth heading towards New Passage. Other reports from here and Pilning Wetland involved a Spotted Redshank, 13 Knot, 320 Black-tailed Godwits, 5 Snipe, single Grey Plover, Ruff, Grey Wagtail and Sparrowhawk and 2 Stonechats. Coincidently I was away on St Agnes, Isles of Scilly this afternoon where I saw and heard the easily overlooked Common Rosefinch, along with Orphean Warbler, Little Bunting, Firecrest and Black Redstart all within a few hundred metre radius of our accommodation.

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                                                                            Common Rosefinch, St.Agnes, Isles of Scilly 14.10.17

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                                                                                Little Bunting, St.Agnes, Isles of Scilly 14.10.17

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                                                                             Black Redstart, St.Agnes, Isles of Scilly 14.10.17
                   
13th October
No Severnside reports were received so far today but I did manage an unscheduled trip to to South Wales today to see a Rock Thrush on top of a very windy mountain.

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                                                                                     Rock Thrush, Gilwern, Gwent 13.10.17

12th October
Combined reports from the Northwick Warth/Pilning Wetland area involved 2 Barnacle Geese, 95 Canada Geese, 200+ Wigeon, 50 Teal, a Little Stint, 270 Black-tailed Godwits, 3 Knot, 2 Grey Plover, a Golden Plover, 25 Lapwing, 90 Dunlin, 3 Ringed Plover, a Little Egret, 10 Cormorants (heading South), 2 Peregrines, 5 Redpoll, 3 Siskins, 3 Stonechats, a Wheatear and 2 Coal Tits.

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                                                                                   Barnacle Geese, Pilning Wetland 12.10.17

11th October
A day with a moderate strength South/South West breeze. A thorough search of Northwick Warth failed to produce the Phalarope and the only birds worth a mention were 300+ Black-tailed Godwits, 70 Oystercatchers, 30 Lapwing, 60 Dunlin, a Grey Plover, 2 Snipe, a Little Egret, 160 Wigeon, 80 Teal, 6 Shelduck, 3 Tufted Duck, 10 Shoveler and 20 Gadwall.

10th October
The Grey Phalarope was seen again briefly early afternoon at Northwick Warth. Other reports from here and Pilning Wetland included a Spotted Redshank, a Little Stint, 2 Ruff, 11 Ringed Plover, 30 Lapwing, 100 Dunlin, 300+ Black-tailed Godwits, 90 Redshank, 3 Snipe, single Little Egret, Kestrel, Sparrowhawk, Grey Wagtail, Stonechat, Cetti’s Warbler and Raven, 180 Wigeon, 3 Swallows and 110 Linnets.

9th October
Another fine and sunny day. Combined reports from Northwick Warth/Pilning Wetland included single Grey Phalarope (found in the evening), Little Stint, Spotted Redshank, Common Sandpiper and Grey Plover, 2 Ruff, 270 Black-tailed Godwits, 250 Dunlin, 70 Curlew, 90 Oystercatchers, 22 Ringed Plover, 35 Lapwing, 110 Redshank, 2 Snipe, 2 Little Egrets, 129 Canada Geese, a Greylag, 3 Shelduck, 150 Wigeon, 50 Teal, 2 Kestrel, 2 Stonechat, 2 Siskin, 2 Redpoll, single Redwing, Kingfisher and Raven. Click on the Phalarope below for a short Youtube video.

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                                                                                  Grey Phalarope, Northwick Warth 9.10.17

8th October
A fine sunny day. A Grey Phalarope was seen at Severn Beach mid morning and it relocated to Chestle Pill at New Passage (it was apparently seen yesterday as well at Severn Beach!). The first Treecreeper of the year was a great find around the Army buildings at New Passage (less than annual here). Other reports from the Northwick Warth area included a Spotted Redshank, 2 Curlew Sandpipers, 2 Knot, 7 Bar-tailed Godwits, 350+ Black-tailed Godwits, 11 Ringed Plover, 120 Redshank, single Little Egret, Grey Plover, Ruff and Common Sandpiper, a Merlin 2 Siskins and a Redpoll. Another 11 Ringed Plover were seen at Severn Beach.

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                                                                                    Grey Phalarope, New Passage 8.10.17

7th October
Single Spotted Redshank, Curlew Sandpiper, Ruff and Grey Plover, 10 Knot, 15 Dunlin, 400 Black-tailed Godwits, 90 Redshank, 60 Curlew, 23 Lapwing, a Ringed Plover, 3 Little Egrets, 150+ Wigeon, 2 Stonechats, single Turtle Dove, Merlin, Kestrel, Raven and Swallow were reported from Northwick Warth/Pilning Wetland. Another Little Egret was seen at Severn Beach. Ringing report; An adult colour ringed Black-headed Gull (Black EE8R on White ring) seen at New Passage today was originally ringed as a 2nd year bird on the island of Griend in the Wadden Sea, Netherlands on 21.5.16)

6th October
A dry and sunny day. Combined reports from the Nortwick Warth/Pilning Wetland area included 2 Little Stints, single Curlew Sandpiper, Spotted Redshank and Ruff, 375 Black-tailed Godwits, 11 Knot, 300 Dunlin, 120 Redshank, 40 Turnstones, single Little Egret, Merlin, Hobby, Kestrel, Raven, Stonechat and Coal Tit. Another 6 Stonechats and a Rock Pipit were seen at Severn Beach.

5th October
The Turtle Dove, 2 Spotted Redshank, a Curlew Sandpiper, 2 Knot, a Ruff, 140 Redshank, 150 Dunlin, 400 Black-tailed Godwits, 20+ Turnstones, single Water Rail, Stonechat, Wheatear, Siskin, Redpoll, Kestrel and Peregrine were reported in the Northwick Warth/Pilning Wetland area.

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                                                                                    Turtle Dove, Northwick Warth 5.10.17

4th October
Sightings from Northwick Warth/Pilning Wetland involved the Turtle Dove, 2 Spotted Redshank, 3 Ruff, a Curlew Sandpiper, 31 Knot, 280+ Black-tailed Godwits, 110 Redshank, 90 Dunlin, 30 Turnstones, 2 Stonechats, 140 Linnet, 2 Wheatear and 3 Siskins. Another 2 Stonechats were seen at Aust Warth.

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                                                                          Spotted Redshank eating a fish, Pilning Wetland 4.10.17

3rd October
The Turtle Dove reappeared on Northwick Warth where other sightings included a Spotted Redshank, 3 Curlew Sandpipers, a Little Stint, 5 Ruff, 4 Golden Plover, a Common Sandpiper, 10 Knot, 20 Lapwing, 450+ Black-tailed Godwits, a Peregrine, 2 Wheatears and 2 Stonechats.

2nd October
A dull and windy day. Combined reports from the Pilning Wetland/Northwick Warth area included a Spotted Redshank, 5 Curlew Sandpipers, 12 Knot, 4 Little Stints, 11 Ruff, 475 Black-tailed Godwits, a Common Sandpiper, 120 Dunlin, 20 Ringed Plover, 90 Redshank, 30 Turnstones, a Little Egret, 34 Canada Geese, a Greylag, 120 Wigeon, 4 Wheatears, single Siskin and Stonechat. Another 60 Turnstones and a Peregrine were seen at Severn Beach.

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                                                                                      Turtle Dove, Northwick Warth 1.10.17

1st October
A  grey and damp start to the month brightened by the appearance of a Turtle Dove on Northwick Warth. Also present here this morning were a record flock of c.700 Black-tailed Godwits, single Spotted Redshank, Common Sandpiper and Bar-tailed Godwit, 5 Curlew Sandpipers, 2 Little Stints, 30 Knot, 6 Ruff, a Peregrine, 9+ Stonechats and 2 Wheatears. Click on the Dove picture for a short video on Youtube.