Yesterday we went in search of Cirl buntings but to no avail, off to Berry head we went where previously we have been lucky. On route to Berry we stopped off at Compton Castle a small National Trust property, I thought the thatched barn would be rather nice converted!
Onward to Berry head where the weather lived up to the notice in the café!
We saw Chiffchaffs and our first Spotted flycatcher of the year (bird 198) but sadly we couldn’t find any Cirl buntings although I am sure they were there somewhere.
We had a lovely walk there and the views were as beautiful as ever, we were treated to lots of Guillemots flying across the water and settling there.
Leaving Berry head and yesterday behind let’s move on to today and a beautiful bright sunny start. With fresh information we had decided to make an early start to explore new ground in our Cirl hunt! Up bright and early and the sun was making an excellent appearance too. it turns out that Labrador Bay, an R S P B site which is very near our holiday home is a good place to look. Off we went and on arrival were immediately struck by the beauty of the setting, quite stunning, now all we needed was for the birds to agree!
We saw Whitethroat, Dunnocks, Robins and then yes…Cirl buntings! First one in a shrub then he flew into a tree but later a small group of them were feeding on the floor among some fresh crops.
We had gone out first thing so when we, rather reluctantly, left Labrador Bay we went in search of some breakfast. I have to report mine was rather yummy; Granola, berries and yogurt, I will have that again!A brief trip back to the bungalow to gather bits and bobs and we were off again this time in Dartmoor direction. We headed for Hay tor and had a lovely walk there, we hoped to get our 200th bird as the Cirl bunting had brought us up to 199!
The weather was kind to us there and we all enjoyed walking up or around, as for me stomping around Dartmoor is always fun so I was in my element! We saw a lovely male Wheatear, Skylarks, (plenty of them were ‘Skylarking’!) Meadow pipits, Stonechats and we hoped Whinchats too but on checking photos we now reckon they were female Stonechats. So we are resting on 199!!! One thing I know for certain is that we really do live in a beautiful country, if we could only guarantee good weather we would be on to a winner!
A welcome coffee was waiting back at the car park then off to Dartmeet a place that holds lots of happy memories from times there as a child myself and visits there with our children. We walked along by the river, deciding not to jump over the stones this time! Lunch, which I will just say involved scones, by which time it was pouring but in true April style it didn’t last long. On our way home we stopped at Postbridge to see the Clapper bridge there.
From there our journey home took us across Dartmoor where we saw the lowest rainbow I can remember seeing, it was spectacular but of course the photo doesn’t truly show the effect. it has been a lovely day, beginning with bright sunshine and ending with a stunning rainbow!