Wednesday 20th February 2019

Marazion Marsh RSPB: Glossy Ibis still 07:30 to 08:10 at least. (S Rogers, P Walsh) Glossy Ibis flew in at 17:30. (DK Parker)

Maer Lake: Egyptian Goose flew in with 3 Shelducks and then left after 15mins flying east, no rings on feet and flying very strongly not clipped , also 2 Yellow-legged Gulls with 3 Great Black-backed Gulls roosting on the far bank. (N Bastin)

Egyptian Goose – Nigel Bastin

Allet: Swallow flew over late morning (T Wilson)

Porthgwarra: 12 Manx Shearwater and 1 Common Scoter flew west between 09:00 & 11:00. (DK Parker)

Newlyn: 2 Swallows at midday. (L Proctor)

Wadebridge: 20 Cattle Egrets at Bradfords Quay this morning. (D Julian)

Walmsley Sanctuary: 40+ Cattle Egrets on a “frog fest” this morning. (A Langdon)

Cattle Egrets – Adrian Langdon

Clapper Marshes: 1 fem Scaup again. (D Julian)

Kingsmill Lake, Saltash: 8 Greenshank, 3 Bar-tailed Godwit, c120 Avocet, c30 Redshank, 80+ Black-tailed Godwit, 140+ Dunlin, 6 (on lake) and 43 (on River Tamar) Oystercatcher, 14 Lapwing, 1 2w Med Gull, 1 1w Common Gull, 86 Shelduck, 60+ Teal, 1 Great Crested Grebe.  (P Kemp)

Trevose Head: 2 Swallows at midday. (R Wilkins)

Tregonetha Downs: 1 Jack Snipe, 1 Snipe (D Eva)

Penzance: 6 Eider, 1 Grey Seal off the promenade this afternoon (J Evans)

Lizard Point: 1 Black-throated Diver.

Hayle Estuary RSPB: Spoonbill flew from Copperhouse towards main estuary early afternoon.

Tuesday 19th February 2019

Late news 17/2, Cambourne, Carn Entral: 1 Hoopoe reported.

Marazion Marsh RSPB: Glossy Ibis left it’s roost at 07:36 and returned at 17:08. (S Rogers)

Hayle: Glossy Ibis flew south over the A30 just north of Hayle at 11:00. (S Gillings)

Drift Reservoir (members only): 2 Black-necked Grebe, 3 Great Crested Grebe, 4 Cattle Egret, 1 Mediterranean Gull. (D Flumm)

Wadebridge: 46 Cattle Egret at 08:00. (S Grose)

College Reservoir: pair of Mandarin Duck, 2 Green Woodpecker, 12 Shoveler, 12 Teal, 1 Goldeneye, 1 Pochard, 31 Wigeon, 59 Coot, 38 Tufted Duck, 4 Great Crested Grebe, 6 Mallard (D Eva)

Portscatho: 1 Long-tailed Duck still, 4 Slavonian Grebe, 1 Red-necked Grebe, 3+ Great Northern Diver. (P Taylor, H Mitchell, S Cowlishaw)

Lizard Point: 5 Manx Shearwater. (D Collins)

Porth Reservoir: 4 Great Crested Grebe, 1m Goosander, 2 Kingfisher, 17 Coot, 1 Tawny Owl heard. (S Grose)

Bedruthan Steps: fem/imm Black Redstart on the cliffs. (P Moon)

Seaton & Downderry: 2 Red-throated Diver & Slavonian Grebe. (P Aley)

Crafthole: 1 Chiffchaff. (P Aley)

Wacker Quay: Spotted Redshank, 6 Bar-tailed Godwit, 2 Grey Plover, 10 Great Crested Grebe. (P Aley)

Wilcove: 1 Whimbrel. (P Aley)

Torpoint: 6 Brent Geese. (P Aley)

East Looe River: 2 pairs of Grey Heron nesting, 9 Oystercatcher, 5 Little Egret, 6 Buzzard. ( C Hooper).

Buzzard, C Hooper

Little Egret, C Hooper

Grey Herons, C Hooper

Oystercatchers, C Hooper

dkp/tdm

College Reservoir Walk 17th March 2019

A mixed group of 19 keen souls braved the Falmouth area to join us on our regular CBWPS Cornwall Birds/SW Lakes birding walk at College and Argal Reservoirs, led by Dan Chaney and Beth Cross.

The forecast on the previous evening was for sunshine from around 9am after drizzle overnight which sounded good; however at 9:30 as we assembled in the car park at Argal it was still pretty grey and damp.

With most of the birdlife to be found around College Reservoir we decided to do this first for woodland birds and the regular ducks, Coot and waterbirds, and save a quicker march for Argal after as time permitted. As it was, we had no time at all for Argal Reservoir. Crossing the dam at the north end of Argal and taking our lives in our hands crossing the road bisecting the two, we hadn’t been going for long before we were rewarded with some of our first birds of the day; a smart Buzzard preening and re-arranging itself on the edge of the woods and a vocal group of Chiffchaff showing reasonably well in the treetops ; 4 in total, with 2 also singing. Great Tits calling ‘Teacher’ ‘Tea-cher’, with Robins and Blue Tits in song contributed to the ambience amongst the massive moss and lichen covered oaks.

We continued alongside the reservoir and headed up to the North end to look at the waterfowl. Unfortunately the birds were distant and we were mostly looking into the sun. Matters weren’t helped by the brisk cold wind funnelling across the reservoir. What had happened to the forecast sunshine?! However, a Goldcrest singing as it flitted next to the path and distant Great Crested Grebes were nice to see.

A spot of confusion reigned as the group spread out into two parties with some trying to see a Goldeneye which had been seen against the far shore, whilst the others pressed on. All was resolved however, as the majority of the group carried on around and under the Penryn bypass to check out the two ponds and leat below the Reservoir – unfortunately not many more species to add (Dipper and Yellow-browed Warbler have been seen here on previous walks), but it’s always good to explore new spots and give it a go. Returning back along the other side of the Reservoir gave a better opportunity to catch up with the Goldeneye – there were now two female-type together (one showing more white, so presumably a first winter male), with their distinctive triangular head and squat body form, diving almost continuously but hopefully all enjoyed good enough views in the end! The ‘golden eye’ was also nice to see.

An opportunity to see Lesser Black-backed and Great Black-backed Gulls on the water alongside each other could also be had, with Cormorants on the platforms and good numbers of washing Herring and Black-headed Gulls rafting out on the water. We could also now see more of the dabbling ducks at closer range – Wigeon, half a dozen Shoveler and Teal the more unusual. The sun was now out, and it felt positively springlike!

Highlights on the return for the select few were a Treecreeper engaging in a bit of song and a silent Nuthatch – unfortunately most of the group had already passed the former when it was picked up, and the latter was very difficult to spot in the tangled morass of twisted oak limbs.

Returning back to the car park at around the designated finish time of 1pm, and a satisfactory mornings birding completed. Thanks to all who came along, and hope to see you on another walk soon. We will be at Stithians in a months’ time, but do keep an eye on the calendar on the website for other walks in the program.

Dan Chaney, 17th Feb

Species List –
1 Canada Goose (4)
2 Mute Swan (3)
3 Shoveler (6+)
4 Wigeon
5 Mallard
6 Teal (4)
7 Pochard (1m)
8 Tufted Duck
9 Goldeneye (2)
10 Great Crested Grebe (4)
11 Cormorant
12 Buzzard
13 Moorhen
14 Coot
15 Black-headed Gull
16 Great Black-backed Gull
17 Herring Gull
18 Lesser Black-backed Gull
19 Woodpigeon
20 Magpie
21 Rook
22 Carrion Crow
23 Blue Tit
24 Great Tit
25 Long-tailed Tit
26 Chiffchaff (4)
27 Goldcrest (1)
28 Wren
29 Nuthatch (1)
30 Treecreeper (1)
31 Blackbird
32 Robin
33 Meadow Pipit (10+)
34 Chaffinch
35 Goldfinch

15 total views, 2 views today

Monday 18th February 2019

Late news, 16/2, Newlyn: 1 Swallow. (N Treneer)

Late news, 17/2 St Cleer: Barn Owl just north of St Cleer, flew up from roadside hedge & picked out in car headlights at 19:35. (D Cleal)

Late news 17/2, Coverack: Pallas’s Warbler still, in trees below sewage works 12.00. (P Mayer)

Chapel Amble: Temminck’s Stint in flooded fields behind the Maltsters pub, also 5 Ruff. (P Green, D Julian) Also 6 Ruff, 87 Black-tailed Godwit, 1 Green Sandpiper, 2 Water Pipit. (S Rowe, T Carson)

Coverack: Pallas’s Warbler showing well at times and occasionally calling at the sewage works this morning with 1 Firecrest, 1 Goldcrest and 1 Chiffchaff. (S Green)

Marazion Marsh: Glossy Ibis dropped in to the marsh at 17.38. (S & P Rogers).

Glossy Ibis, Steve Rogers

Lizard Point: Great Egret flew south to Housel Bay then west over Lizard Point @ 10.25. (P Mayer)

Wadebridge: 58 Cattle Egret in field with cattle at Gonvena. (S Grose) Also 500+ Lapwing on Camel Estuary. (K&J Mortimore)

Drift Reservoir (members only): 2 Black-necked Grebe, 3 Great Crested Grebe, 4 Cattle Egret, 1 Little Egret, 8 Redwing. (D Flumm)

Walmsley Sanctuary: 2 Spoonbill, 24 Cattle Egret, 2 Little Egret, 3 Grey Heron, 130 Wigeon, 14 Gadwall, 12 Shoveler, 80 Teal, 1m Pintail, 4 Tufted Duck, 2 Little Grebe, 4 Ruff, 20 Black-tailed Godwit, 1 Peregrine. (S Rowe, T Carson)

St Martin: 21 Cattle Egret in the sheep field next to the chapel this afternoon. (J Selby)

Gannel Estuary:  7 adult  Mediterranean Gull (1 with white ring on left leg and aluminium on right leg). (M Lammas)

Towan Head: 2 Red-throated Diver offshore. (M Lammas)

Rosudgeon: Merlin over A394 heading toward coast early this morning.(J Evans)

Helford River: Slavonian Grebe and 4 Great Crested Grebe off Lower Calamansack.
(T Pinfield)

Camel Estuary: 4 Whooper Swan in field behind the Burniere hide. (D Julian) Also 95 Shelduck, c3000 Golden Plover, 350 Lapwing, 520 Dunlin, 90 Redshank, 80 Black-tailed Godwit. (S Rowe, T Carson)

Whooper Swans, Steve Rowe

Penzance: Adult male Black Redstart on the rocks at Jubilee Pool. Also 50+ Sanderling, 5 Purple Sandpiper, 2 Turnstone. (M Webb)

Black Redstart, Martin Webb

Black Redstart, Martin Webb

Lizard Point: 1 Black-throated Diver.

Hayle Estuary RSPB, Ryan’s Field: 1 Spoonbill and 1 Whimbrel. (D Eva) Carnsew Basin: 2 Little Grebe, 4 Cormorant, 3 Curlew, 35 Dunlin, 5 Redshank, 1 Oystercatcher. (M Webb)

Curlew, Martin Webb

Cormorant, Martin Webb

Dobwalls: Red Admiral and Tree Bumblebee in the garden (C&J Duffy)

Trevose Head: 38 Turnstone, 18 Purple Sandpiper, 5 Grey Plover, 11 Stonechat, 12 Pied Wagtail, Grey Wagtail, 39 Corn Bunting (in stubble fields opposite coast guard cottages). (B Bosisto)

Hell’s Mouth: 1 Swallow flying West. (A McKechnie)

Truro: Raven calling on pinnacle of Cathedral at 10 o’clock. (K&J Mortimore)

Dozmary Pool: 1f Scaup, 3 (1 drk) Goldeneye, 9 Tufted Duck, 4 Fieldfare. (R Veal, P Taylor, H Mitchell, S Cowlishaw)

Crowdy Reservoir: pair Goosander, 161 Lapwing. (B Craven)

Helston Boating Lake: 1 Ferruginous Duck (suspect origin), 8 Mediterranean Gull (7 ad, 1 1st
summer), 1 ad Lesser Black-backed Gull. (S Green)

Roseland. Ardevora, Fal, Philleigh (Private land): 86 Shelduck, 65 Curlew, 56 Redshank, 6 Greenshank, 4 Black-tailed Godwit, 2 Shoveler (1m, 1 f,)  6 Little Egret, 3.00pm -4.00pm towards high tide. (D Hall)

dkp/tdm

Field Meeting at Helston, Sunday February 10th 2019

If there is anything in life to make the heart sink, it is seeing pouring rain out of the window on the morning of a field meeting you are leading. It was, however, very much a case of showers, so with fingers crossed I made my way to Helston. As luck would have it the weather improved all the way and I was delighted to see around ten members keen enough to turn out on a blustery morning when many would have stayed home. Quite a few familiar faces were among the attendees and we soon got down to making the most of a pretty uninspiring dose of weather. Unlike this meeting last year, where Firecrests outnumbered Goldcrests, neither species put in an appearance. The ever reliable wintering Chiffchaffs were abundant though, especially in the lane running up the side of the sewage works. No Siberians this year though, at least not picked up by us, despite determined looking.

We couldn’t ignore the Glossy Ibis of course and it was very showy, feeding away with male Blackbirds and showing just how big they are when next to a familiar species. This was a new tick for some, which is always a treat for a leader. Apart from the common woodland species we had a beautiful Grey Wagtail (never anything but!), a few Song Thrushes and a singing Greenfinch hanging on in the wind at the top of a tall tree. Nothing remarkable in that, save for the comments on how long since people had seen one in their gardens, after the awful canker disease that has sent numbers crashing.

Given that Helston Boating Lake has such a reputation for turning up rarities we couldn’t miss a walk around. There were lots of pristine Tufted Ducks of both sexes and we had a nice look at a very sleepy drake Ferruginous Duck that has been on the lake for months now. What a fantastic, dark chestnut colour he is too. Presumably an escape, but still a very nice bird to see.

With raindrops trying to turn into a shower and the breeze picking up we agreed to call it a day a little early but we left cheered by the sight of one or two Black-headed Gulls in breeding plumage. Spring is on its way!

Roger Hooper, 12th Feb

Glossy Ibis, Ian Boreham Glossy Ibis - Steve Rowe

CBWPS File Photos – Glossy Ibis in Cornwall 2019 – Marlene Rouncefield, Steve Rowe

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Windmill Farm Work Party Saturday 9th February 2019

Windmill Farm Work Party

CBWPS Cornwall Birds headed out to Windmill Farm on Saturday 9th February to carry out some habitat management for birds and other local wildlife. We were joined by students from UoE Penryn Ornithology Club.

It was a pretty dull day, with mizzle in the air, meaning we were all wearing many layers and waterproofs! But spirits were high, and we set about with loppers, saws and scythes; managing to strip bare a large section of vegetation (mainly gorse, bramble and willow) surrounding the dragonfly ponds. Leaving the banks lining the ponds bare in this manner is beneficial to invertebrate species, particularly Green Tiger Beetles. Many Toads were spotted, with a large section of the pond laced with toad spawn. The entrance area and car park were cleared of bramble and the visitor centre tidied and windows lovingly cleaned.

Before … After … And Toad Spawn

The sites nest boxes were checked for last years nests; finding both a Blue Tit and a House Sparrow nest! Fingers crossed that the boxes will be occupied this season!

We rewarded ourselves with hot drinks, biscuits, ginger cake and an afternoon of birding. Not many birds were seen onsite at Windmill Farm, so we headed over to Coverack.

Industrious volunteers … Checking the nest boxes

Windmill Farm species list:
– Herring Gull
– Magpie
– Carrion Crow
– Blue tit
– Great tit
– Skylark
– Chaffinch
– Goldfinch
– Marsh Harrier flyover (enjoyed by the select few just after the Coverack posse had left!)

It was blustery along the coastline, but we managed to spot a variety of species on and off land. It didn’t take us long to spot the Pallas’s warbler at the sewage works amongst a group of Long-tailed Tits! (Others had been there all morning and not seen it, so we were perhaps a little fortunate).

Coverack species list:
– Eider 3
– Fulmar
– Slavonian Grebe
– Grey Heron
– Gannet
– Shag
– Cormorant
– Buzzard
– Black-headed Gull
– Mediterranean Gull
– Great Black-backed Gull
– Lesser Black-backed Gull
– Kittiwake
– Guillemot
– Woodpigeon
– Raven
– Long-tailed Tit
– Chiffchaff
– Pallas’s Warbler
– Goldcrest
– Wren
– Song Thrush
– Robin
– House Sparrow
– Dunnock
– Grey Wagtail
– Pied Wagtail
– Rock Pipit

A final stop off at Goonhilly Earth Station resulted in no birds (although a dead mouse was seen), and rain starting to come in, and heavily just after we had left. You never know what you will see – a feral escaped Wallaby was seen less than a mile away the following day, and a male Hen Harrier from the viewing platform the following week.

Thank you to all that came and helped out. An enjoyable time was had by all. A very special thank you to Windmill Farm’s warden Dougy Wright and to Greg Adams for organising the workparty.

Paige Petts, 14th Feb

8 total views, 1 views today

Sunday 17th February 2019

Late news, 29/1, Helston: A pair of Glossy Ibis at Penrose amenity site. (M Hoggett)

Glossy Ibis – Mike Hoggett

Late news, 16/2, Gluvian: 1 Green Sandpiper, 1 Cormorant, 110 Fieldfare, 30 Yellowhammer. (P Roseveare, B Bosisto)

Late news, 16/2, Mousehole: Adult Kumlien’s Gull at the St Clement’s Isle roost, also 2 1w Yellow-legged Gull and 2 ad argentatus Herring Gull. (M Elliott)

Mousehole: Adult Kumlien’s Gull still present on St Clement’s Isle to 12:00 at least, also adult argentatus Herring Gull plus Great Northern Diver and Red-throated Diver. (M Elliott)

Chapel Amble: 1 Temminck’s Stint, Black-tailed Godwit, 2 Green Sandpiper, Grey Wagtail, Redwing, Teal. (M Frost)

Hayle Estuary RSPB: 1 adult Ring-billed Gull, 7 adult Yellow-legged Gull and a 2nd winter. 14 Grey Plover, 4 Greenshank and the adult Spoonbill. (P Roseveare) 1 Mediterranean Gull, 5 Yellow-legged Gull. (M Halliday)

Yellow-legged Gull – Mark Halliday

Mediterranean Gull – Mark Halliday

Hannafore: Siberian Chiffchaff still, 1 Chiffchaff, 1 long-staying drake Eider + 1 female Eider. (M Frost)

Trewornan Bridge: 5 Cattle Egret in field with sheep. Huge flock of Golden Plover over estuary. (M Frost)

Drift Reservoir: 4 Cattle Egret, 107 Canada Geese and 3 Med Gull. (D Flumm)

Wadebridge: 53+ Cattle Egret off Bradford’s Quay. (D Julian)

Helston: Yellow-browed Warbler in wood west of River Cober and south of the boating lake. (M Ahmad) Another reported at the sewage works.

Lelant: 1 Swallow over the golf course at 11:30. (S Turner)

Poltesco: 2 House Martin, 6 Rock Pipit. (F Trewin)

Rock Pipit – Freddy Trewin

Bosworgy, Relubbus: 1 Swallow. (D Beadle)

Camel Estuary: Adult Yellow-legged Gull off Tregunna. 2 Spoonbill & 4 ad Whooper Swan at Burniere Point. (D Julian)

Newlyn: 4 Eider, 1 Common Gull, 1 Kingfisher, 1 Raven. (S Grose)

Longrock Pool: 3 Little Grebe, 2 Tufted Duck. (S Grose)

Marazion Beach: 12 Common Gull. (S Grose)

St Dennis: Firecrest at the cemetery feeding with a small group of Long-tailed Tit. (P Ash)

Higher Bosistow: Crimson Speckled moth (image on CBWPS twitter feed). (M Wallace). (Possibly first UK winter/early spring record of this rare vagrant c100 records total)

Colliford Reservoir and Dozmary Pool: 75 Canada Goose, 6 Cormorant, 2 Great Crested Grebe, 14 Goosander (inc 5 males), 28 Mallard, 17 Teal, 13 Tufted Duck, 2 Pochard, 1 Shoveler, 2 Goldeneye, 140 Lapwing, 4 Great Black-backed Gull, 13 Lesser Black-backed Gull, 3 Buzzard, 2 Raven, 23 Carrion Crow, 12 Jackdaw, 6 Magpie, 53 Starling, 3 Blackbird, 36 Fieldfare, 15 Redwing, 1 Stock Dove, 5 Meadow Pipit, 2 Dunnock, 1 Wren, 2 Chaffinch and 5 batches of Frogspawn. (D Conway)

Hayle Kimbro: 1 female Marsh Harrier, 1 Painted Lady. (D Eva)

College Reservoir CBWPS walk: 4 Canada Goose, 3 Mute Swan, 6+ Shoveler, Wigeon, Mallard, 4 Teal, 1m Pochard, Tufted Duck, 2 Goldeneye, 4 Great Crested Grebe, Cormorant, Buzzard, Moorhen, Coot, Black-headed Gull, Great Black-backed Gull, Herring Gull, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Woodpigeon, Magpie, Rook, Carrion Crow, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Long-tailed Tit, 4 Chiffchaff (2 singing), Goldcrest, Wren, 1 Nuthatch, 1 Treecreeper, Blackbird, Robin, 10+ Meadow Pipit, Chaffinch, Goldfinch. Full report can be found in the Walks and Events section Here. (D Chaney, B Cross)

Porth Reservoir: 1m Goosander, 35 Mallard, 10 Coot, 1 Kingfisher, 6 Great Crested Grebe. (S Rowe) 1 Tawny Owl heard, and several Great Crested Grebe heard. (S Grose)

Lanner: 300+ Jackdaw in pre-roost gathering at 18:00. (S Turner)

Golitha Falls: 3 Grey Wagtail, 2 Nuthatch, 5 Blue Tit. (C Hooper)

Grey Wagtail and Nuthatch – C Hooper

Penwithick: 1 Sparrowhawk, 1 Robin, 6 Chaffinch, 11 House Sparrow, 3 Blue Tit, 2 Great Tit, 2 Reed Bunting, 2 Woodpigeon, 2 Long Tailed Tit. (K Bowers)

Reed Bunting and Long-tailed Tit – Kevin Bowers

Penhale Point: 1 Merlin. (S Grose)

Porth Beach: 2 Mediterranean Gull below Glengorgal Hotel. (S Grose)

Bartinney: 1 male Hen Harrier. (C Moore)

Lanyon Quoit: 1 Barn Owl. (DK Parker)

Pentire Headland, Newquay: 5 Red-throated Diver, 1 Manx Shearwater. (D Trevelyan)

Porthmeor Beach, St Ives: c5 Black Throated Diver and 2 Great Skua. Also 1 Vagrant Emperor dragonfly on the beach. (L Stoppard)

Porth, Roseland: 70+ Mediterranean Gull at high tide feeding in wash of shore waves at north end of Towan Beach. (D Hall)

dkp/cjb