Male Yellowhammer, Devon by Chris Townend

Tour Dates 1: Monday 26th – Thursday 29th April 2021 (Exmouth to Exmouth)
Tour Dates 2: Monday 10th – Thursday 13th May 2021 (Exmouth to Exmouth) 
Tour Price: £450pp
Deposit: £150 per person
Conservation Donation from Wise Birding: £50 – £100
Minimum Number: 4 people
Maximum Group Size: 6 people

Target Species
Birds: Common woodland, heathland and reedbed species including specialities such as Common Redstart, Pied Flycatcher, Marsh Tit, Dartford Warbler, Willow Warbler, Tree Pipit, Yellowhammer, Cirl Bunting, Cetti’s Warbler, Reed Warbler, Reed Bunting and Nightjar.

Tour Summary
Based in the beautiful seaside town of Budleigh Salterton this short birdwatching break is very much focused on learning bird song. We will visit three different habitats in and around Budleigh Salterton with limited travel required throughout. The tour will involve early mornings to experience bird song at its best, but the afternoons will be free for you to explore the area on your own. On one morning we will visit some woodland on the edge of Dartmoor National Park to hear some different species. Also, on at least one evening we will visit the nearby Pebblebed Heaths to listen for the incredible sound of the European Nightjar!
Most importantly, we will have fun and enjoy the sight and sound of some of our best British birds, so come and join us!

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

Click Play above to hear the Yellowhammer Song recorded by Chris Townend

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 walk to the nearby Otter Estuary for a relaxed introduction to bird song at this great local site where we should find our first Reed Warblers and Reed Buntings and maybe Cetti’s Warbler too. We will then head to one of the great local Pub restaurants. Overnight Budleigh Salterton

Pied Flycatcher, Dartmoor by Chris Townend

DAY 2: Dartmoor Woodland – Pebblebed Heaths
We will head out early in the morning and travel to the edge of Dartmoor where we will explore a beautiful woodland with an excellent mix of arboreal species. We will take a slow walk around and should easily see/hear a good 50+ species by the end of the morning. Dipper, Common Redstart, Pied Flycatcher, Marsh Tit and Tree Pipit will be the specialities and we also have a chance of Lesser Spotted Woodpecker. More common species that we will no doubt hear and see will include Willow Warbler, Common Chiffchaff, Blackcap, Song Thrush, Mistle Thrush, Nuthatch, Long-tailed Tit, Bullfinch and more!
After a well earned coffee stop en route back to Budleigh Salterton, you will then be free to explore the local area on your own at leisure.
During the evening we will meet again and head up to the East Devon Commons where we should find Yellowhammer, Linnet, Dartford Warbler, Stonechat and at dusk, the amazing sight and sound of the European Nightjar! Overnight Budleigh Salterton

Male Cirl Bunting, Devon by Chris Townend

DAY 3: Otter Estuary and Farmland
Another early start, though we will be not be travelling very far today as we visit the River Otter and surrounding area. Here, we will find a very different selection of birds compared to the previous day as we explore the mix of reedbed, scrub, wooded river and farmland. We should find a good diversity of species this morning including good chances for Kingfisher, Water Rail and numerous singing Reed Warblers, Reed Buntings, Cetti’s Warblers, Stock Dove, Grey Wagtail and maybe Dipper. We will then walk along the coast where Devon’s special bird, the Cirl Bunting, can be found alongside singing Skylarks, Common Whitethroats and with luck maybe a hunting Peregrine Falcon! After a coffee and compulsory Cream Tea at nearby Otterton, we will then return along the River Otter to Budleigh Salterton where the afternoon will be spent at leisure.
The evening will once again be spent on the Pebblebed Heaths to listen for Nightjars and any other species that we may have missed. Overnight Budleigh Salterton

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 to and from train station on Days 1 & 4 and travelling to Dartmoor on Day 2 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 for train station pick-ups / drop-offs and when travelling to Dartmoor on Day 2 otherwise on foot.
Difficulty: Moderate
A reasonable level of fitness is required. Other than our visit to Dartmoor on Day 2, the rest of the itinerary will be done on foot.
Walking will be done at a very slow pace with walks of around 3 – 4Km except for Day 3 when the round trip is 10Km.
Climate: Be prepared for a typical unpredictable English Spring!
Tour Start Point: Exmouth railway station, Devon.
Tour End Point: Exmouth railway station, Devon.

Budleigh Salterton, Devon by Chris Townend