Another great Cruise for the visitor with plenty to see from start to finish. 20+ Red Breasted Mergansers on view from Shelly Beach to Topsham and close to the boat. A bonus Male Black Redstart on the inner side of Dawlish Warren beach showing on the signage board in the dunes. Possibly the Exmouth Marina bird needing a change of scenery! A couple of Turnstones and plenty of Dark Bellied Brent Geese across the mud in front of Dawlish Warren hide to Starcross. Little Grebe was not far away from the Slavonian Grebe off Cockwood and showed well for the visitors to see clearly but at a distance. Again plenty of gulls now on the estuary with Common and Herring Gull comparison easy to be seen. 20+ Great Crested Grebe showing well from Starcross to Turf Locks. First of 200+ Pintail and a few Widgeon off Lympstone. Shag and Cormorant fishing in this area and lower down showing the visitors the comparison on both species. First of the 300+ Avocets were seen at the Kenn confluence with good numbers showing all the way to Topsham. At the waters edge from the Clyst confluence to Turf Lock large numbers Black Tailed Godwits along with Dark Bellied Brent Geese beyond this line and out on the mudflat large numbers of Dunlin were feeding. Towards Topsham a large flock of Golden Plover and Lapwing went airborne putting on a display at a distance. There were another 200+ Golden Plover roosting opposite Turf Lock. A small flock of Knot flew over the boat in the same location. Plenty of Redshank were seen all the way to Topsham. After we turned and left Topsham we were treated to a great display from 400+ Brent Geese flying over the boat from Darts Farm direction. Another flock of Brent Geese took off and joined them making 500+ circling overhead, making a great winter spectacle enjoyed by the visitors. Back on the river a pair of Goldeneye were seen but moved on down stream. A few visitors saw a Kingfisher on the old wreck below Starcross Sailing Club. Good numbers of Oystercatcher were lining the route back to Exmouth.
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