Support for the Nightjars on Rosewall Hill

One of our members, Vivian Stratton has requested that we notify our members of a serious conservation issue with breeding Nightjars and other species in West Cornwall,  –

” I could do with some of the members that attended the Nightjar evening at Rosewall Hill with me a few weeks ago to contact me with regards to saving the Nightjars on Rosewall Hill, as they have failed this year as the farmer has allowed his horses onto the hill, contravening the agreement he signed with the National Trust. The horses have trampled the young Nightjars, killing them, which happened two years ago and I have been told that if I can get some support from the CBPWS, RSPB and Cornwall Wildlife Trust we can change this policy and save one of the three pairs left in West Penwith. 

I am hopeful of the support of all the members representing all three societies.

I would be grateful if this message can go out to any members of the CBWPS or RSPB, as well as this problem being more widely publicised. If there are letters either to me or the National Trust ,they will put the matter into the hands of Natural England who will then ensure that the Nightjars, Dartford Warblers, and all the breeding birds get full protection. Last year we lost a catastrophic 80.8% of all breeding birds on the Rosewall and Buttermilk Hill. This figure will be higher this year because of the loss of the Nightjars and Dartford Warblers, both Scedule 1 Breeding Birds, that require special protective measures when breeding and the National Trust and the farmer will not protect these valuable species. I have also lost three Cuckoo chicks this year being trampled to death by the herd of Exmoor Ponies, we have not reared any Cuckoos on this National Trust Land for 7 years, because of being trampled by the ponies, the main host for the Cuckoo is the Meadow Pipits which nest on the ground, where over the last five years i have lost 91% to 93% of all the nests. I have 5 species of birds that no longer breed on this moorland because of the activities of the Exmoor Ponies during the breeding season. I spend four to six hours a day, every day, monitoring the breeding birds and recording and document all success’s and failures that occur here. My detailed documentation goes back five years where each year we are looking at between 81% to 84% loss of all breeding birds on Rosewall and Buttermilk Hill, this is a catastrophic loss, and just cannot go on.

If West Cornwall is to retain the rare, and common breeding birds, something has to be done to protect the species for generations to come after I am gone. A letter, or email to the National Trust sharing my concerns will go a long way and I need as many people as possible to respond to this.

Thankyou, Viv Stratton”

Vivian can be contacted at –


Friday 21st July 2017

Porthgwarra: 21 Cory’s Shearwater, 9 Sooty Shearwater, 6 Storm Petrel, 5 Common Scoter & 3 Puffin 05:50-08:00 (D Flumm, M Spicer, S Rogers, T Mills, Phil Taylor & Hilary et al)

Porthgwarra: 25 Cory’s Shearwater, 3 Great Sheawater, 8 Sooty Shearwater, 20+ Storm Petrel, 4 Puffin, 5 Common Scoter. Dawn til 10am. (S Rogers)

Porthgwarra: 20+ Cory’s Shearwater, 14 Storm Petrel, 3 Balearic Shearwater, plus a ‘storm petrel with white belly’ 07:00 – 08:00 (R Archer)

Lizard Point: 122 Cory’s Shearwater, 17 Great Shearwater & Sabine’s Gull past Lizard Point 07:30-09.15 (I Maclean)

Stithian’s Reservoir: 2 Common Sandpiper, Sedge Warbler feeding young by the dam. (J St Ledger)


Thursday 20th July 2017

Pendeen: 4 Cory’s Shearwater, 2 Great Shearwater, 1 Sooty Shearwater, 2 Storm Petrel and 1 Great Skua this morning. Also 3 Bottle-nose Dolphin and good numbers of Whimbrel. (R & I Archer)

Porthgwarra: 3 Cory’s Shearwater, 2 Sooty Shearwater, 1 Storm Petrel, 1 Puffin, 2 Common Scoter between 13:45-15:30. (M Wallace) 12 Cory’s Shearwater, 2 Storm Petrel, 1 storm petrel sp and 1 Great Skua from the cove between 19:00 & 20:45. Also 10+ Common Dolphin. (DK Parker)

Chapel Point: 544 Manx Shearwater, 1 Cory’s Shearwater, 1 Sooty Shearwater, 15 European Storm Petrel, 1 Wilsons Storm Petrel (7:08pm), 1 subadult Arctic Skua, 17 Med Gull (15 Juvenile, 2 Adult) and 3 Kittiwake in a 2 hour seawatch this evening. (B Bosistow)

Gluvian: 1 Common Sandpiper. (B Bosistow)

Pendennis Point, Falmouth: 19 (7 ad, 12 imm) Mediterranean Gull west (including one consuming a small rodent (vole sp.) picked off the water’s surface c. 30 yards offshore), distant Manx Shearwaters and Gannets feeding, 1 Common Sandpiper, 1 Whimbrel, 3 Oystercatcher, 2 Linnet, 2 Whitethroat, 3 Rock Pipit, 1 juv Stonechat, 2 House Martin, 2 Wall Brown butterfly. 07:00 – 08:00 hrs (D Chaney)

Swanpool Point, Falmouth: 2 (1ad 1 juv) Sandwich Tern, 14 (5 ad, 9 imm) Mediterranean Gull, 3 Kittiwake west 16:20 – 17:20. (D Chaney)

Gorrangorras, Penryn River: 19 Redshank, 1 Whimbrel, 1 Curlew, 2 Little Egret, 55 (54 ad, 1 juv) Black-headed Gull at evening high tide. (D Chaney)

Drift: 3 Little Grebe, 7 Great Crested Grebe (incl 2 juv), 2 Common Sandpiper, juv Peregrine. Also 130 Swift & 50 House Martin feeding over reservoir early morning before half departed west. (D Flumm)

Rock, Porthilly Point: 37 Mediterranean Gull on mussel cages this afternoon. (S Grose)

Siblyback Reservoir: Spotted Flycatcher, Song Thrush, Goldfinch, Blackbird (R Napp)

  • Spotted Flycatcher


Wednesday 19th July 2017

Drift Reservoir: 50 Swift, 25 House Martin, probable Hooded Crow hybrid associating with Rooks and Carrion Crows in fields to east of reservoir. Showed dirty, dark brown-grey breast, belly and back contrasting with rest of black plumage (head, wings and tail). Underparts appearing speckled at times – viewed at distance from road along west side. (D Flumm)

Walmsley Sanctuary: 18 Dunlin, 1 Wood Sandpiper, 3 Green Sandpiper, 2 Common Sandpiper, 2 Lapwing, 3 Black tailed Godwit, 2 Cattle Egret, 2 Common Snipe, 2 Shoveler (all this evening). (B Bosistow)

Pendennis Point, Falmouth: 1 Whimbrel, 1 ad Mediterranean Gull. (D Chaney) 

Stithians Reservoir: 18 Cormorant, 17 Mallard, 4 Grey Heron, 6 Little Grebe, 7 Moorhen, 3 Coot, 1 Lapwing, 30 Canada Goose. (D Chaney) 

Gorrangorras, Penryn River: 60 ad Black-headed Gull, 1 (1st s) Mediterranean Gull, 4 Little Egret, 2 Dunlin. (D Chaney)

Kingsmill: 60 Dunlin, 12 Redshank, 3 Greenshank, 1 Black Tailed Godwit (sp), 3 Whimbrel, 50 Curlew, 8 Little Egret. (J Cole)

St John’s Lake: 70+ Med Gull, Sandwich Tern with one young, 12 Whimbrel. (C Buckland)


Tuesday 18th July 2017

St Buryan: No positive news on the 1st-summer female Amur Falcon today, although there is one unconfirmed report of it east of the minor road to Crows-an-wra briefly though distant (TR19 6EL) at c 09:00 hrs.

Porthgwarra: 2 Great Shearwater from Scillonian III off Porthgwarra this morning, also 2 European Storm-petrel.

Hayle Estuary: 1 juvenile Yellow-legged Gull. (M Halliday)


All photos – Yellow-legged Gull, Mark Halliday

Par: 5 Adult Med Gull, 4 Sandwich Tern, 1 Common Sandpiper, 40 Sanderling, 6 Dunlin, 4 Ringed Plover. (B Bosistow)

Walmsley Sanctuary: 3 Cattle Egret, 1 Wood Sandpiper (for second day).

Padstow: 54 Med Gull on Camel Est off Padstow this evening. (4 juv). 10 Sandwich Tern and a second cal Yellow-legged Gull. (D Julian)

Padstow farm shop: 2 Barn Owl. (S Grose)

Siblyback Reservoir: 1 Oystercatcher on the southern end of the reservoir, flew off SW over towards Minions. 1 ad Yellow-legged Gull with Herring & Lesser Black-backed Gulls (also present yesterday). Also 4 Spotted Flycatcher. 1 juv Redstart, 11 little Grebe. (P Phillips)

Late Updates:

Newquay, Carnanton Woods: 1 Barn Owl on road sign with damaged wing. (S Grose).

Seaton: 2 Silver-Washed Fritillary. (R Napp)

Silver-washed Fritillary, Rick Napp

West Trethellan, Lanner:  juvenile Green Woodpecker. (R Hampshire)


Bird Dialect Names Survey

Please allow me to introduce myself: my name is Kerstin Richter; I am a PhD student of the University of Regensburg in Bavaria. My dissertation project in English linguistics focuses on historical dialect bird names and their present day use.

In order to collect the necessary data, I am herewith kindly asking for your help. I would be extremely grateful if you could forward the following link to the members of your bird society:

Of course you are also very welcome to take part in my little survey yourself. It will take up only 5-10 minutes of your time, and no personal details will have to be disclosed.

If you or the participants have any questions or suggestions, please do not hesitate to contact me via e-mail or telephone.

Any contribution to my studies will help me immensely and your support is very much appreciated.

Very warm wishes,

Kerstin Richter

Fikentscherstr. 11

93051 Regensburg, Germany

Phone: +49(0)941-5861573

Mobile: +49(0)15208764201


News July 2017

*Seabirds Count – survey 2017* A census of breeding seabirds has been organised in the UK and Ireland approximately every 15 years since 1969-70. Together with the JNCC and partners we will be surveying the whole of the Cornish coastline over the next few breeding seasons to continue this work. To take part or find out more please see *Seabirds Count*

Guidelines for submissions of bird news: We welcome submission of all bird news from anyone, CBWPS member or not. To make it easier to collate submissions we would ask you to follow the Guidelines for Submissions which can be found HERE

Breeding Season Records: We will not be publishing specific news of Sensitive and Schedule 1 Breeding Birds on the news page during the breeding season. Common sense applies – the welfare of the birds comes first.

We would still very much like all records of these species however, including photographs where appropriate, for the County Record etc even if the news is not specifically published on the day.

Website update: New on the cbwps website – ‘First Spring Arrivals 2017’ detailing first dates of new migrants into the county.

To read all the latest News, views and updates and find out what is happening within the Society and Cornwall’s birdlife please visit the News Page on the website.

The Birdwatchers’ CodeNature Photographers Code of Practice (pdf)