Common Snipe by Chris Townend

Tour Dates 1: Monday 25th – Thursday 28th January 2021 (Exmouth to Exmouth)
Tour Dates 2: Monday 8th – Thursday 11th February 2021 (Exmouth to Exmouth)
Tour Price: £575pp
Deposit: £250 per person
Conservation Donation from Wise Birding: £50 – £100
Minimum Number: 4 people
Maximum Group Size: 4 people

Target Species
Birds: Dark-bellied Brent Goose, Common Scoter, Black-necked Grebe, Great Northern, Black-throated and Red-throated Divers, Purple Sandpiper, Avocet, Black-tailed Godwit, Peregrine, Cetti’s Warbler, Cirl Bunting plus any local rarities!

Tour Summary
Based in the beautiful seaside town of Budleigh Salterton this short winter birdwatching trip for beginners will focus on coastal and estuarine habitats. Having a small group size of just 4 people will allow us plenty of time to learn some basic identification skills with an always relaxed and friendly approach from our local leader. We will spend a full day based around the Exe Estuary where the primary objective will be to enjoy prolonged and close views of many waders, ducks and geese. Our second day will be spent exploring the Tor Bay coast where a good mix of waders, divers and grebes await us! During the evenings you will have the opportunity to go through all the sightings of the day with numerous useful notes to help you identify the species on your own in the future.

ACCOMMODATION: 3 nights in Budleigh Salterton, Devon
3 nights in a very comfortable guesthouse
Included Meals: Breakfast only

DAY 1: Arrival Exmouth and transfer to Budleigh Salterton
After a mid afternoon pick-up from Exmouth train station we will take the 15 minute drive east to the coastal town of Budleigh Salterton. Once settled into your comfortable bed and breakfast we will eat at one of the excellent local Pub restaurants. Overnight Budleigh Salterton

DAY 2: Exe Estuary
Our day will be very much dictated by the tides to ensure that we enjoy the closest views possible of all the species that we see. The sites we visit will include the Otter Estuary and the Exe Estuary and the RSPB reserves at Bowling Green Marsh and Goosemoor. The theme throughout the day will be taking our time and ensuring that everyone learns as much about basic identifications as possible in a relaxed and good humoured way!
Birds that we hope to find during the day are numerous, but some of the more special species we will be looking for include Black-tailed Godwit, Avocet, Dark-bellied Brent Goose, Red-breasted Merganser, Pintail, Grey Plover, Greenshank, Cetti’s Warbler and more! Overnight Budleigh Salterton

Male Cirl Bunting, Devon by Chris Townend

DAY 3: Torbay and Brixham
After breakfast we will travel a little further afield to the Torbay coast. The numerous bays and harbours here can be a great place to view divers, grebes and seaduck. Again, the primary focus will be on taking our time getting good views of the birds we see. A telescope will be essential today, but our local leader will provide this for you. Species we will look for today include three species of diver, Great Northern, Red-throated and with luck, Black-throated Diver too. Ducks should include Common Scoter and maybe Eider as well as some good opportunities to see Black-necked Grebes and Great Crested Grebes.
After lunch we will visit an area where Cirl Buntings regularly visit and if we are lucky we may also find an overwintering Firecrest. A visit to the nearby harbour at Brixham should produce some good views of Purple Sandpipers and Turnstones around the harbour wall and the harbour itself is usually a good place to find divers at close range. Overnight Budleigh Salterton

Great Northern Diver by Chris Townend

DAY 4: Budleigh Salterton – Exmouth
After a leisurely breakfast at our accommodation, we will then take the journey to Exmouth train station where the tour will conclude.

Please note this is a flexible itinerary which may need to be adjusted slightly dependent on arrival / departure times, weather conditions and the most recent information from our local guides

Leader: Chris Townend / Mike Langman
Included in cost: Accommodation in twin en-suite rooms, breakfasts only (starting with breakfast on day 2 until breakfast on day 4), ground transport and services of leader.
Not included in cost: Travel to/from Exmouth, lunches and dinners, drinks and travel insurance.
Accommodation: Good quality local guesthouse.
Single Supplement: £100
Transport: People carrier throughout.
Difficulty: Easy
We will do most of our birding just a short distance from our vehicle with walks of up to 2-3Km per day.
Climate: Be prepared for a typical unpredictable English winter!
Tour Start Point: Exmouth railway station, Devon.
Tour End Point: Exmouth railway station, Devon.

Budleigh Salterton, Devon by Chris Townend