Don't miss a story sign up to the North Devon Gazette's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

Rare sighting of black swan on River Taw

PUBLISHED: 09:11 18 July 2012

Gazette reader Beverly Martin pictured a single black swan on the River Taw near Barnstaple Rugby Club on Thursday morning.

Gazette reader Beverly Martin pictured a single black swan on the River Taw near Barnstaple Rugby Club on Thursday morning.

Archant

Unusual visitor delights wildlife watchers.

A black swan has been spotted on the River Taw in Barnstaple.

Reader Beverly Martin photographed the bird, native to Australia, with a herd of mute swans alongside the rugby club on Thursday morning.

Beverly, who regularly takes pictures of swans on the Taw, said the bird was not a ‘common sight’ and wondered if it had been ‘blown off course’ from Dawlish, which is famously home to a number of black swans.

She said: “It’s not a regular visitor – I’m always taking photos of the swans on the Taw and I’ve never seen it, nor have any of the regular dog walkers, runners or a couple of fishermen who were there today.

“Dawlish does have a flock of black swans so perhaps the waterfowl warden at Dawlish Town Council could do a ‘head count to see if one is missing.

“I couldn’t see if it was tagged but I guess it would be.”

This is not the first sighting of a black swan on North Devon’s estuaries. In August 2007, the Gazette reported that a similar bird had been spotted on the River Torridge in Bideford.

Barnstaple wildlife expert Trevor Beer said he had been made aware of the recent visitor on the Taw.

“It’s not been here very long – maybe a couple of weeks,” he said.

“Black swans do appear on the river once in a while and they have been seen on the Torridge during the last three-or-four years.

“They are smaller than the white swans and, most likely, it would have escaped from someone’s collection.

“The birds sometimes move out from larger groups in the West Country; it may hang around with the mute swans or may disappear again,” he added.

Other News Stories

Fri, 14:34

An overturned trailer on the M5 which left three lanes closed has now been cleared.

Read more
Fri, 12:11

Our Devon quiz is back for another round!

Read more
Fri, 10:00

Pupils at Great Torrington Bluecoat Primary School have rallied round to collect donations for an animal rehoming centre.

Read more
Fri, 08:54

The North Devon link road is partially blocked due to an accident near Barnstaple.

Read more
Thu, 15:35

Thousands of pounds worth of power tools were taken in one night, when thieves broke into three parked vans in Ilfracombe.

Read more
Thu, 14:58

A crash involving a lorry and a car on the North Devon link road which was causing delays has now cleared. slowing traffic.

Read more
Thu, 11:00

Ostlers Cider Mill at Goodleigh has celebrated the traditional wassailing ceremony to begin the new year

Read more
Thu, 08:45

Devon and Cornwall residents are being polled on whether they would pay another £12 a year to ‘protect frontline policing’.

Read more
Thu, 08:03

Emergency services were called out after a large chicken shed blew onto a North Devon road.

Read more

Local Weather

Rain

Rain

max temp: 11°C

min temp: 10°C

Most Read News

Useful Links

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
Competitions
North Devon Football League
Order Photos
Family notices
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Image
Read the North Devon Gazette e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Local business directory

North Devon's trusted business finder

Find planning applications