Recent sightings

COVID-19 Update 13th July: Due to the ongoing Coronavirus situation the Society walks and events program has been suspended until further notice. Society reserves are now open, however all hides remain closed. We will be publishing reports of rare birds in the County where it is felt it is safe to do so, please do continue to send in all records. See the Society Homepage for more information and a full statement from the board.

Cornish Choughs: The Society is now maintaining the dedicated Chough sightings database for Cornwall, adding to the many thousands of records received from birders and members of the public since 2001. Please send your sightings to including, date, place, 6 fig grid ref if possible, and notes on any colour rings observed. Another record year for Cornish Chough in 2020 with 14 pairs successfully breeding and fledging 43 chicks – the highest number so far.

Sensitive Breeding Birds: Now that the breeding season is upon us we will be resuming our policy of withholding reports of sensitive breeding (and potential breeding) birds in the County. Please keep sending in your reports as even though they may not appear on the website they will still go into the county database and thus be available for the annual report, research and conservation. Remember, the welfare of the birds comes first. The full list of species including RBBP and Schedule 1 species can be found on the website here. Please always bear this in mind when sharing information on social media too.

Birding in Lockdown: Links to Garden Lockdown Listing League and our Birding Ideas Page, helping to make the most of extra time as a result of the lockdown.

Cornwall Swift Survey 2020: Following the latest guidance from the government and based on the position of the BTO amongst others we will be carrying out and collating results from this tetrad-based breeding survey where safe to do so. Details and recording form can be found here: Cornwall Swift Survey 2020. It is likely that the survey will continue into 2021 at least.

Steve Madge: It is with great sadness that we have to inform our members that our society president for many years, Steve Madge, passed away yesterday after a long battle with Parkinson’s Disease. Our deepest condolences to all of his family.

His obituary can be found on the website here – Steve Madge 1948 -2020

More news and updates from the Society: can be found Here

The Birdwatchers Code  The Nature Photographers Code  Wildlife & Countryside Act 1981  Schedule 1 Birds

Monday 10th August 2020

Drift Reservoir (members only): Adult Spotted Sandpiper still present, ranging along the Western shore all day, 1 Wood Sandpiper, 3 Green Sandpiper, 5+ Common Sandpiper, 1 Snipe, 1 Black-tailed Godwit, 1 Greenshank, 1 Ringed Plover, 2 Sedge Warbler, 87 Canada Goose + 4 hybrids, 26 Mallard, 7 Teal, 1 Little Grebe, 2 Moorhen, 18 Cormorant. (D Beadle, D Flumm et al)

Spotted Sandpiper, Alex McKechnie

Spotted Sandpiper, Dave Flumm

Spotted Sandpiper, Dave Flumm

Skewjack: Black Kite and juv Marsh Harrier drifted off towards Sennen. (M Wallace)

Davidstow Airfield: 2 Wood Sandpiper and 1 Green Sandpiper on control tower pool. Also, 503 Lesser Black-backed Gull and 5 Yellow-legged gulls. (B Bosisto) Please respect other users of the airfield and keep the runways clear.

Crowdy Reservoir: 10 Great Crested Grebe, 11 Tufted Duck, 3 Redshank, 1 Common Sandpiper, 3 Spotted Flycatcher (2 adults feeding juvenile), 9 Crossbill (B Bosisto L Payne)

Kingsmill Lake: 4 (2 juv) Common Tern, 1 Dunlin, 1 Sanderling, 3 Common Sandpiper, 2 Ringed Plover, 7 Whimbrel, 7 Black-tailed Godwit, 18 Greenshank, 47 Redshank & 91 Curlew. (P Kemp, M Beer)

Windmill Farm: 1 Green Sandpiper, 1 Southern Migrant Hawker, 3 Lesser Emperor, 2 Red Veined Darter. (D Wright)

Southern Migrant Hawker – Dougy Wright

Lizard: 1 Southern Migrant Hawker on track above the Waterings. (T Blunden)

Porthgwarra: juv Marsh Harrier flying around at sea off Hella Point at 07:55 then flew back onshore into Porthgwarra cove. Also 1st calendar year Yellow-legged Gull, 4 Mediterranean Gull offshore and 1 Jay, 2 Great Spotted Woodpecker, Kingfisher, 2 Wheatear, 1 Willow Warbler, 5 Chiffchaff, 5 Blackcap, 2 Whitethroat also present in the area. (N T Keogh)

Porthcurno: 2 Mediterranean Gull, Buzzard, 2 Chiffchaff, 1 Blackcap. (N T Keogh)

Hayle Estuary RSPB: juv Marsh Harrier 17:55. (S Murnan) Also 5 Common Sandpiper, 4 Greenshank, 1 Whimbrel in am. (R Veal)

Marsh Harrier, Steve Murnan

Maer Lake: 1 Wood Sandpiper, 18 Dunlin, 5 Curlew, 5 Ringed Plover. (N Bastin)

Downderry: 0620-0730, moving west 56 Gannet, 3 Manx Shearwater and 13 Mediterranean Gull. Also inshore a Common Sandpiper. (A Payne)

Marazion Marsh RSPB: 1 Black-tailed Godwit. (P Walsh)

Wheal Martyn Clay Trail: 1 fem/juv pied flycatcher through this evening on Sky Spur. (R Hollis)

Sunday 9th August 2020

Drift Reservoir: 1 Spotted Sandpiper. (MO) Also, 8 Green Sandpiper, 1 Common Sandpiper, 1 Geeenshank, 1 Ringed Plover, 1 Kingfisher, 2 Little Egret, 1 Teal, 20 Swift. (B Mellow, S Rowe)

Spotted Sandpiper – John St Ledger

Blackwater: 1 Kite species over the A30 late afternoon. Possibly a Black. (C Richards)

Nanjizal Valley: 1 Common Nightingale trapped and ringed this morning on private ringing site. Also, birds overhead included 1 Curlew, 1 Whimbrel, 3 Green Sandpiper, 1 Tree Pipit, 80+ House Martin (B Bosisto, P Roseveare)

Common Nightingale – Robbie Phillips

St Levan: 1 Willow Warbler, 5 Chiffchaff, 1 Whitethroat, 1 Grey Wagtail, 1 Great Spotted Woodpecker, 23 House Martin (N T Keogh)

Porthgwarra: (seawatch 09:45-12:00) 1 dark morph adult Arctic Skua, 1 female Common Scoter, 13 Mediterranean Gull (1 adult and 12 juveniles), 2440 Manx Shearwater, 2 Chough, 3 Common Dolphin and 2 Harbour Porpoise. Also, 2 Blackcap, 1 Chiffchaff, 1 Whitethroat, 2 Buzzard near the cafe (N T Keogh)

Skewjack: Marsh Harrier late morning. (M Wallace)

Kingsmill Lake: 1 Green Sandpiper, 1 Ringed Plover, 18 Greenshank, 8 Redshank, 2 Dunlin, 5 Oystercatcher, 7 Whimbrel, 105 Curlew, 7 Black-tailed Godwit, 11 Little Egret & c.360 Black-headed Gull (P Kemp)

Bude Town River: 1 Great White Egret. Also at Morwenstow Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary and a Golden Ringed Dragonfly. (S Windle)

Great White Egret – Stevan Windle

Great White Egret – Stevan Windle

Maer Lake: 7 Dunlin, 2 Ringed Plover, 1 Sanderling, 2 Redshank, 1 Black-Tailed Godwit, 1 Lapwing, 1 Shelduck, 2 Grey Heron. (T & C Nicholson)

Stithians: Small flock of Crossbill (heard only) heading east high over the village (M Grantham)

Stithians Reservoir: 1 Green Sandpiper, 1 Common Sandpiper, 2 Greenshank, 1 Lapwing, 2 Curlew, 15 Grey Heron, 1 Little Egret, 25 Cormorant, 1 Swift, 1 Swallow (S Van Hear)

Falmouth: 10+ Swift still present in Acacia area. (J St Ledger)

Loe Pool: 1 Wood Sandpiper, 2 Green Sandpiper, 1 Common Sandpiper 1 Black-tailed Godwit, 2 Curlew, 3 Teal, 1 Shoveler. (I Maclean)

Loe Bar: 11 Sanderling, 10 Dunlin. (I Maclean)

Leswidden (near St Just): 1 Curlew flying over. 4 Little Grebes on main quarry lake. (J Branscombe)

Par Beach Pool: 11 Mediterranean Gull, 308 Black headed Gull, 1 Lesser Black backed Gull, 1 Shelduck, 1 Coot, 2 Grey Heron, 57 Mallard, 18 Moorhen, 2 Cormorant, 1 Gadwall. (S Grose)

Par Beach: 3 Mediterranean Gull, 3 Dunlin, 1 Sanderling, 1 pr Mute Swan with 1 Cygnet. (S Grose)

Lostwithiel: 1 Sparrowhawk above Restormal Manor, 1 Song Thrush, 9 Siskin. (S Grose)

Shirehall Moor LNR: 1 Common Sandpiper, 1 Kingfisher, 1 Green Woodpecker, 5 Bullfinch. (S Grose)

Tregonetha Downs: 4 Yellowhammer. (S Grose)

Gluvian: 1 Spotted Flycatcher (B Bosisto, L Payne)

Spotted Flycatcher – Bob Bosisto

Pendower Beach: 2 Whimbrel, 20 Oystercatcher, 1 Little Egret (L Bosisto)

Marazion Marshes RSPB: 1 Little Egret , 1 Grey Heron , 5 Stonechat , 2 House Sparrow , 1 Coal Tit , 6 Carrion Crow , 1 Sparrow Hawk . (K. Bowers)

Stonechat – Kevin Bowers

Sparrowhawk – Kevin Bowers

Grey Heron – Kevin Bowers

Ryan’s Field, RSPB: 1 Cormorant  (K. Bowers)

Cormorant – Kevin Bowers

Gannel Estuary: 7 Whimbrel over, 1 Common Sandpiper, 1 Lesser Black backed Gull at Boating lake rummaging through rubbish bin. (S Grose)


Saturday 8th August 2020

Drift Reservoir: adult Spotted Sandpiper in NW arm from mid pm and still present this evening. (D Flumm et al) Also 5 Green Sandpiper, 2 Kingfisher, fem Teal, 7+ Swift. (D Flumm, T Mills et al)

Spotted Sandpiper, Reuben Veal

Spotted Sandpiper, Dave Flumm

Spotted Sandpiper, Dave Flumm

Spotted Sandpiper, Nigel Rogers

Spotted Sandpiper, Tony Mills

Land’s End: Melodious Warbler in willows along the cycle track, c1/2 mile from the complex. (P Clement)

Davidstow Airfield:  5 Eurasian Dotterel on main runway briefly late morning before flying north. Also, 2 Ringed Plover. (P Roseveare)

Crows-an-Wra: juv Marsh Harrier at 18:00 near A30. (M Wallace)

Loe Pool: 1 Little Tern mid afternoon, also white ring on a Cormorant but too distant to read. (C Richards)

Hayle Estuary RSPB: 7 Sandwich Tern, 3 Greenshank, 1 Whimbrel, juv Dunlin, 6 Shelduck, 6 Greylag Goose, c20 Med Gull. (R Veal)

Marazion Marsh RSPB: 5 Green Sandpiper this morning. (P Walsh) 2+ Green Sandpiper still this eveing with c15 Pied Wagtail to roost. Also 1 Bar-tailed Godwit, 1 Whimbrel on the beach. (S&P Rogers, R Veal)

Porthgwarra: 2 Green Sandpiper over. (M Wallace)

Camel Estuary: 618 Med Gull this morning including 10 ringed. (D Julian)

Stithians: 3 Green Sandpiper, 1 Common Sandpiper this evening. (R Augarde)

Maer Lake: 1 Wood Sandpiper, 1 Common Sandpiper, 4 Dunlin, 3 Curlew, 1 Lapwing, 7 Teal, 1 Shelduck, 1 Juv Mediterranean Gull, 111 Black-headed Gull, 22 Lesser Black-backed Gull. (P Roseveare) at 4pm 8 Dunlin, 3 Ringed Plover, 1 Grey Heron, 1 Lapwing, 1 Shelduck, 2 Mute Swan, 7 Sand Martin, Swallow, Black-headed & Herring Gull. (T&C Nicholson)

Bude Marshes: 1 Great White Egret, 1 summer plumage Cattle Egret. (P Roseveare)

Great White Egret, Pete Roseveare

Great White Egret, Pete Roseveare

Cattle Egret, Pete Roseveare

Pendeen Watch (7.15-8.15pm): 300 Manx Shearwaters, 1 Arctic Skua, 4 Common Scoter and 1 Wheatear. (J Branscombe)

St Ives: Balearic Shearwater reported past 10:48.

Friday 7th August 2020

Late news, 6/8, Prince of Wales Pier, Falmouth: 2 Sandwich Tern. (S Van Hear)

Land’s End: 1 Icterine Warbler this morning. (T McGowan)

Maer Lake: Great White Egret early morning. Also, 1 Wood Sandpiper and 5 Dunlin. (B Craven)

Great White Egret – Brian Craven

Great White Egret – Brian Craven

Marazion Beach: 5 Sandwich Tern, 1 Common Sandpiper, 1 Whimbrel, c15 Turnstone, c20 Dunlin, c40 Ringed Plover, 6 Sanderling. (R Veal)

Loe Pool: 1 Little Tern. (S Bury, D Beadle)

Predannick Wollas: Juvenile Red-backed Shrike at Predannick Wollas on coastal path half mile S of the NT car park on hedges beside first pedestrian gate. (K Dalziel & J Hawkey) Still present albeit only seen briefly at 12:30 (D Beadle). Also 3 Chough, 1 Skylark, 1 Sparrowhawk, 1 Whitethroat (juv), 3 Stonechats, 2 Clouded Yellow butterflies (inc. Helice form), 1 Stoat, 2+ Dark Green Fritillary Butterfly, Autumn Lady’s Tresses. (K Dalziel & J Hawkey, D Beadle)

Red-backed Shrike – Kate Dalziel

Red-backed Shrike – Kate Dalziel

Clouded Yellow – Kate Dalziel

Autumn Lady’s Tresses – Kate Dalziel

Drift Reservoir: 3 Little Egret, 1 Teal, 1 Common Sandpiper, 1 Swift, fem Kingfisher, 10 House Martin. (D Flumm)

Kingfisher – Dave Flumm

Kingfisher – Dave Flumm

Carnsew Pool: 2 (ad & juv) Sandwich Tern, ad Sanderling, 1 Turnstone, 9 (2 juv) Ringed Plover, 15 (10 juv) Dunlin. (R Veal)

Porthilly Point: 76 Mediterranean Gull on mussel crates at 07.45am. (S Grose)

Rock: Mediterranean Gulls observed feeding on insects above from private gardens most of the afternoon, 2 Buzzard. (S Grose)

Padstow: Covey of 7 Grey Partridge in field behind ‘Dog Kennel’ at Trethillick Farm, 3 Yellowhammer, 2 Buzzard, 1 Kestrel. (S Grose)

Crugmeer: 1 Corn Bunting. (S Grose)

Tresemple Pool: 10 Greenshank, 43 Curlew, 79 Redshank, 2 Dunlin, 13 Whimbrel. (D Eva)

Coverack: 1+ Sandwich Tern in the Bay and 1 Sedge Warbler at Trevothen. (D Beadle)


Thursday 6th August 2020

Late news, 5/8, St Erth: 1 Sparrowhawk. (D Green)

Late news, 5/8, Newlyn: 20 Turnstone on beach at Newlyn green at high tide c.6.30 pm.

Bude Marshes: Great White Egret still on the River Neet this morning.

Maer Lake: 5 Dunlin, 1 Lapwing, 1 Common Sandpiper, 1 Wood Sandpiper. And a brief visit from the Great White Egret. (J Turner)

Lizard Point: 1 Great Shearwater and a European Storm Petrel reported this morning.

Devoran: 1 hybrid American Black Duck x Mallard reported this morning. (S Votier)

Loe Pool: 1 Wood Sandpiper, 3 Green Sandpiper, 1 Common Sandpiper. (S Bury)

Stithians: 2 Green Sandpiper, 1 Gadwall, 3 Teal, 1 Lapwing ( D Eva )

Kingsmill Lake: 4 Whimbrel, 80+ Curlew, c.10 Redshank, 17 Greenshank, 4 Dunlin (2ad + 2 juv),
9 Adult Black-tailed Godwit & 1 ad+1 juv Sandwich Tern (P Kemp)

Nanjizal Valley: 133 new birds ringed. 75 Sedge Warbler + a French control. 10 Reed Warbler, 21 Whitethroat, 2 Garden Warbler, 5 Willow Warbler, 1 Grasshopper Warbler. (K Wilson)

Lower Tamar Lake: Willow Tit and 4 Long-tailed Tit foraging along the lakeside among the reeds. (R Mudge)

East Pentire, Newquay: 2 Storm Petrel, 1 Med Gull this evening. (S Rowe) Also dozens of Swifts in a feeding frenzy above Pentire between 5 and 7pm. (C Stephenson)

Gannel Estuary: 5 Dunlin, 1 Whimbrel, 5 Little Egret. (S Rowe)

Charlestown: 1f Bullfinch (D Hastilow)

Gluvian: 1 Sandwich Tern recorded overnight at 2am (B Bosisto)

Mounts Bay: 8+ Storm Petrel, 3 juv Yellow-legged Gull from the south side of St Michael’s Mount to St Clements. (M Elliott)

St Mawgan: 7 Mistle Thrush in field below house this evening. (L Curry)


Wednesday 5th August 2020

Late News, 04/08, Mabe Burnthouse: Small Crossbill flock heard overhead 08:30 am (D Chaney)

Late News, 04/08, Bass Point, Lizard: Seawatch 3:15 – 9:15pm 2 Sooty Shearwater, 1 Balearic Shearwater, 1 Bonxie, 1 Storm Petrel, 3 Puffin, 7 Guillemot, 12+ Mediterranean Gull, 100+ tern sp. distantly, 1 Mallard, 5 Raven, 3 Harbour Porpoise close offshore, 1 Ocean Sunfish, 3 Bluefin Tuna periodically breaching with distant Manxie rafts. (D Chaney, S & E Perfect)

Marazion Beach: 1 Whimbrel, 5 (1 juv) Turnstone, c.40 (3 juv) Ringed Plover, c.25 ad Sanderling, c.10 (1 juv) Dunlin. (R Veal)

Walmsley Reserve: 1 adult Hobby, 1 Oystercatcher, 1 Green Sandpiper. (B Bosisto)

Treraven: 3 Grey Wagtail this evening. Also Common Sandpiper, Little Ringed Plover & 4 Little Egret (B Bosisto)

Wadebridge: 101 Redshank, 1 Common Sandpiper, 1 Kingfisher behind Bradford Quay. (S Grose)

Carnanton Wood: 2 Spotted Flycatcher from Spitfire corner. (S Grose)

Porthgwarra (05:45-18:45): 13 Great Shearwater, 13 Cory’s Shearwater, 23 Sooty Shearwater, 3 Balearic Shearwater, 9 Storm Petrel, 4 Great Skua (one chasing a Cory’s late pm), 1 Pomarine Skua, 2 Arctic Skua, 3 Sandwich Tern, 2 Arctic Tern, 7 ‘Commic’ Tern, 5 Puffin, 125 Whimbrel (one flock of 123 mid pm), 10 Common Scoter, 47 Mediterranean Gull. Also present but not counted were Manx Shearwater, Fulmar, Kittiwake, Gannet. (S Rogers, S Rowe, C Smith, B Mellow et al)

Camel Estuary: 481 Mediterranean Gull this morning. Including 7 colour ringed individuals. (D Julian)

Downderry: (09.30-1200) 1 Balearic Shearwater, c.200 Manx Shearwater, 6 Fulmar, 11 Common Scoter, c.250 Gannet, 6 juv Mediterranean Gull, 1 juv Yellow-legged Gull, 1 adult Kittiwake (P Kemp)

Maer Lake: 1 Whimbrel, 60+ Black headed Gulls, 12 Herring Gulls, 1 Grey Heron, 2 Moorhens, 2 Greenfinch, Swallows and House Martins feeding over the lake in moderate numbers. (H Kendall)

Devoran; viewed from Tallack’s Creek: 2 Whimbrel, 6 Black-tailed Godwit, 8 Greenshank, 96 Redshank, 90+ Curlew, 35 Oystercatcher, 2 Mediterranean Gull. (J St Ledger)

Whimbrel – – John St Ledger

Stithians Reservoir: 1 Green Sandpiper, 2 Common Sandpiper, 2 Greenshank, 1 Lapwing, 1 Teal, 14 Grey Heron, 20+ House Martin. (J St Ledger)

Green Sandpiper – John St Ledger

Burlawn: 7 Crossbill from Trerice Plantation, 3 Tawny Owl. (S Grose)

Bumble Rock, Lizard (08.03-19.00): 7 Cory’s Shearwater, 8+ Great Shearwater, 10+ Balearic Shearwater, c15 Sooty Shearwater, 3 large shearwater sp, 20+ Storm Petrel, 10+ ‘Commic’ Tern, 3 Sandwich Tern, 1 Arctic Skua, 1 Pomarine Skua, 1 Great Skua, 5+ Puffin, 15 Common Scoter, 3 juv Yellow-legged Gull. (L Langley, C Urquhart et al)

Polperro: 1 Great Shearwater, 1 Cory’s Shearwater to the SSW at sea.


Tuesday 4th August 2020

Late News, 03/08, Roseland: 8 Swift in the evening. (D Hall)

Late news, 3/8, Sennen: pale morph Pomarine Skua reported offshore. (Rare Bird Alert)

Nanjizal Valley: 358 ringed on private site. Of note, 1 Melodious Warbler, 213 Sedge Warbler (+3 British controls), 48 Whitethroat, 4 Grasshopper Warbler, 15 Reed Warbler, 18 Willow Warbler and a Green Sandpiper. (K Wilson)

Melodious Warbler – Kester Wilson

Colliford Lake: 3 Teal, 1 Little Egret, 1 Dunlin, 1 Common Sandpiper, 7 Wheatear (B Bosisto)

Siblyback Reservoir: 5 Yellow-legged Gull and Pink-footed Goose this afternoon. (D Julian) Also, 2 Barnacle Geese, 3 Common Sandpiper (D Eva)

Bude Marsh: Great White Egret still present today. (N Bastin)

Great White Egret – Nigel Bastin


Lower Tamar Lake: 1 Kingfisher, 4 Willow Tit ( three on one feeder), 3 Great Crested Grebe, 3 Coot, 2m Tufted Duck, c40 Mallard, 3 Magpie, 24 Blue Tit, 5 House Martins, 3 Swallow, 1 Moorhen, 3 Robin, 5 Chaffinch, 1 Nuthatch, 5 Coal Tit, 1 Grey Heron, 1 Jay, 1 Marsh Tit, 1 Grey Wagtail c200 Canada Geese. (R Mudge)

Crowdy Reservoir: 1 Common Sandpiper, 5 Ringed Plover, 1 Great Spotted Woodpecker, 2 Siskin, 2 Willow Warbler, 2 Chiffchaff, 1 m Bullfinch, 80 + Goldfinch feeding on thistles below dam wall. (S Grose)

Roughtor Farm: 2 Spotted Flycatcher, 5 Coal Tit, 7 Raven over. (S Grose)

St Tudy: 2 (1 ad,1 juv) Green Woodpecker. (S Grose)

Camel Estuary: 521 Mediterranean Gull (D Julian)

Ruan Lanihorne: Juvenile Green Woodpecker in private garden for 2nd day. (D Hall)

Green Woodpecker – David Hall

Lanhydrock: 1 Osprey reported over the A30 mid afternoon.

Porthgwarra: 5 Sooty Shearwater, 3 Balearic Shearwater, 3 Great Skua, 1 Arctic Skua, 4 Puffin, 2 Great Shearwater (G Lawlor) 1 Great Skua,1 Sooty Shearwater (16.30), Pod of 6 – 8 Common Dolphin most of this period feeding offshore. (J Hawkey)

Hayle Estuary RSPB: 1 Black-tailed Godwit, ad Dunlin, 2 Greenshank, 4+ Common Sandpiper, 1 Whimbrel. (R Veal) 28 Mediterranean Gull. (G Lawlor)

Roseland; a message from BTO Regional Rep Simon Taylor:” A colour ringed Buzzard has been spotted on the Roseland in the vicinity of Nare Head near the Carne village area. Details were submitted to me via Wild Roseland for more information about the bird. Having looked it up and discussed it with BTO one aspect of the colour ring appeared to be incorrect.  This is potentially a very interesting bird so if you are birdwatching on the Roseland please keep an eye out for a colour ringed Buzzard and either submit the details to BTO or to me, Simon Taylor BTO Regional Rep for Cornwall at   Thank you for your help”.