Sunrise over Black Hole Marsh at Seaton Wetlands

Countryside's early morning birdwatchers spot 48 species

East Devon District Council's Countryside team would like to thank County Bird Recorder Steve Waite for leading an extremely interesting and informative Dawn Chorus Walk at Seaton Wetlands on Saturday 18 April. 

A cold easterly wind failed to deter 24 keen individuals from enjoying this special walk, which began at 5.30am at Black Hole Marsh. The event got off to a flying start, as within ten minutes the group had a close view of a barn owl, while from the car park, wood pigeon, collared dove, blackbird, robin, blackcap and chiffchaff could all be heard. 

Steve Waite said:

Even before sun rise, 23 species had been recorded, proving how productive these early hours can be. Newly arrived summer migrants were evident, with two reed warblers singing strongly and we had some close views of swallows migrating north. One of the best sights was a lone raven flying over us and calling - it was then joined by a crow, which enabled the group to see the size difference between these two otherwise fairly similar species.

The most numerous species encountered was the wren. Although these skulkers are quite elusive during the day, up to 15 singing males were heard during this early morning walk.

By the end of the walk, 48 different species had been seen or heard by the group, and after well deserved bacon rolls and hot drinks for all, the Axe Estuary Ringing Group continued the enjoyable morning by showing the group a variety of birds up close.

Details of upcoming East Devon District Council Countryside events can be viewed online.