Home Forums Devon Summer visitors (birds!)

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  • #10726
    JM
    (admin)

    Have any of our rural readers heard a cuckoo yet?
    Any other reports of summer visitors? Swallows should be imminent!

    #10786
    IV
    (admin)

    Not yet (17th April) around Bovey Tracey. I shall miss hearing them on Haytor Down each morning this year.

    #10801
    Theophilus
    Participant

    Filmed a cuckoo near Pew Tor last year. Have never heard such an abundance and over such a long period. Wondered what the agreed name was for a group of cuckoos, and have seen that Country Life refers to an ASYLUM. Is it possible to post short videos on this Forum?

    #10802
    JM
    (admin)

    Theophilus wrote:
    > Is it possible to post short videos on this Forum?

    Not yet, I’m afraid. There are two possibilities: if it’s already on the internet, you can post the link to it here, or if you’d like to email the video to forum.admin@devonassoc.org.uk we can store it on our server and provide a link to it.

    #10836
    Wistman
    Participant

    I saw two swallows (house martins?) near Newton Abbot on Thursday and two more this morning. Each year we see the occasional early birds which seem to disappear again (flying further north?), before the resident birds return.

    #10861
    Theophilus
    Participant

    The cuckoo is back in Dartmoor. Heard one a couple of days ago near Windy Post. What a welcome sign of Spring!

    #10903
    Wistman
    Participant

    Hoping we’ll be able to drive up onto the moor so we can hear them before they leave this year – how long do they keep calling for? At least the wildlife is having a break from human interference like it did during Foot and Mouth in 2001.

    Still no swallows here.

    #11043
    Barton
    Participant

    Sun 5th April one lone swallow Wilsworthy firing range, Dartmoor.
    Thu 16th april first cuckoo on the west of Dartmoor – near Hillbridge,

    #11057
    Wistman
    Participant

    Hello Barton. Welcome to the DA forums.

    Do you have swallows where you are now? Does anyone? There are still none here, nor house martins. We usually hear the first swifts screaming in the first week of May – I shall be upset if they don’t arrive.

    #11101
    Barton
    Participant

    Hi Wistman, saw one swallow here 2 days ago on the wires, normally have 3 pairs nesting here , last year only one pair, I think there was some awful weather Greece area which literally knocked the swallows out of the sky this spring, and for 2019 there was a south African drought which didnt help. So unfortunately only seeing then in one or twos in the hamlets/farms to the north of Peter Tavy. Swallows and house martins usually feed over-head here – valley bottom, but none to see.
    The goldfinch at first listen sounds a bit like the swallows, then I tune in and realise they are not back!

    #11123
    IV
    (admin)

    Saw a lovely pair(?) of yellow wagtails round marshy ground near Lowerdown Cross, Bovey Tracey today.

    #11124
    Wistman
    Participant

    @Barton: On my walk yesterday I saw just one swallow, swooping over a herd of cattle. If they encountered bad weather, perhaps they’ve had a rest in the Med and will arrive soon.
    I know what you mean about the goldfinch song – expecting swallows, I’ve been disappointed a few times this spring.

    @IV: Definitely not grey wagtails?

    #11152
    Wistman
    Participant

    Just seen about ten swifts. Summer arrives on a dull damp day.

    #11153
    IV
    (admin)

    @Wistman I was 80% convinced they were yellow wagtails – only saw them briefly without binoculars etc. for 10 seconds, but thought they had yellow throats…now I’m not sure. I went to the same area on my exercise hour yesterday hoping (naively) that they’d be waiting for me but no sighting. I shall take binoculars and camera on each walk from now on. Watch this space! Lovely that the swifts have arrived.

    #11222
    Wistman
    Participant

    Any re-sightings? It’s just that yellow wagtails don’t usually make it this far west. Grey wagtails (which are yellow too) are not uncommon hereabouts.

    #11235
    IV
    (admin)

    @Wistman I’ve seen one in the same locality and it was definitely a grey wagtail! I’ve been waiting to re-post in the hope that the pair would re-emerge, but they’ve wised up to my approach and pop over a hedge when I get close.

    #11387
    JM
    (admin)

    Not a summer visitor, but I thought I’d share this photo of our resident blackbird looking very bedraggled after successfully raising one brood of three, and now – judging by the amount of food he keeps carrying away – busy feeding another nest full.

    This is using the new Upload Attachments facility (see below the text input box – note the file size limit of 2MB). Click on the photo to see a larger version.

    Attachments:
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    #11389
    IV
    (admin)

    Nice photograph of a frazzled father. The birds work hard at this time of year! I watched a neighbour hand-feeding a female blackbird this morning. As soon as our neighbour moved away the blackbird bobbed along after her with her mouth open – making it clear what she wanted…and expected!

    Thanks for the heads-up about the image upload facility.

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