Sat 7th Feb 2015.
A trip to North Devon with Paul F. I met up with Paul at Maple Lodge and we made our way down to Darts Farm near Topsham. Our target bird or birds were the 3 Penduline Tit that had recently been seen here. We waited for 3 hours with only a couple of Chiffchaff to keep us occupied but no sign of the Pendulines. We decided on a change of scenery and headed off to Broadsands. Just as we were leaving a Peregrine put in an appearance quickly followed by an acrobatic pair of Raven. Broadsands is a good site for Cirl Buntings and we were also told we might connect with both Slav and Black-necked Grebe here too. We parked in the "pay and display" car park and wandered over to the corner of the lower car park. A nice male Cirl Bunting gave good views on top of some brambles. We couldn't manage any better views due to strong winds and dog walkers. Next a brief sea-watch. We managed to find a distant grebe but impossible to i.d. due to distance and heavy seas. Over to Brixham Harbour where we thought we might find some Divers sheltering in the harbour. Nothing doing in respect of Divers so we decided to head back to Darts Farm. Paul was putting his optics back in the car but I decided to have one last scan of the Harbour. Still no Divers but a stroke of luck when a couple of birders asked had I found any Divers? I said I hadn't and they said what about the Glaucous Gull? I wasn't aware of any Glaucous Gull but the other birders said they seen photo's of the Gull on the Harbour Masters Office roof. I focussed my scope on the office roof and the first bird I saw was the Glaucous Gull! I rushed over to tell Paul and both he and the other two birders viewed the Glaucous through my scope (no not all at the same time, they took it in turns). We walked down to the Harbour Masters office and were lucky to get some nice views of the Glaucous Gull. We took a few pics and then headed back to Darts Farm. It was getting late and no sign of the Pendulines so we headed for home. In conversation at Darts Farm most birders agreed that the Pendulines must have found a more favourable site nearby. This proved correct when they were re-located at Exminster Marshes RSPB this morning.