Outing to the Donmouth and Seaton Park

Around 25 local group members joined the outing to Donmouth and Seaton Park on a grey Thursday morning. Starting from the Donmouth hide on the south side of the river, our first bird was a clear, if distant view of a beautiful male peregrine falcon perched on one of the local tower blocks.

The river itself had good numbers of herring, common and black-headed gulls, plus a lone great black-backed, along with an estimated 85 oystercatchers and 30 redshank. Out in the channel we had excellent views of a male long tailed duck amongst teal, mallard and little grebes.

Long-tailed Duck c/o Ruth Howie

From the assembly point the group headed into Seaton Park where a good number of woodland birds were singing and feeding. Several stock doves were spotted, along with blackbird, robin, wren, song thrush and various crow species. A lone heron was hunting amongst the reeds of the wetland area.

Our hope was to spot some riverine specialties on the Don as it ran through the park and we weren’t disappointed with a pair of dippers feeding along the margins of the river, while goosander and goldeneye worked the centre of the channel. Disappointingly, no kingfishers or otters were seen.  

Dipper c/o Keith Yates

Heading back to the Donmouth along the river path brought good views of long-tailed, blue and great tits, and a pair of treecreepers searching out the local trees for nesting spots. 

Back at the hide, our final bird of the day was a striking make kestrel hunting along the grass verges in search of voles and mice. Total birds seen in the day: 37!

Thanks to David Leslie and Rob Leslie for their help in co-leading the trip.

David White.