Monday, 28 October 2013

The Pale Swift.

One or two Pallid Swift have been seen in the country including in Norfolk and other east coast locations, with more than one bird seen on the south coast in Kent.

Pallid Swift. Marc Heath.

The Pallid Swift is so closely similar to the Common Swift that it mitigates against its discovery, and an individual found in Cleveland has caused some discussion about its ID. But if you use the link below to see the discussion, be warned it was six pages long last time I viewed it but very interesting HERE

Considering the species is locally common in the Mediterranean, and breeds as close as southern France it is remarkably rare here. An interesting historical fact about the Pallid Swift is that the first record for the UK lay in a museum for 77 years after being collected at St John's Point in Co Down, Ireland in 1913, before being positively identified in 1990. The first record for Britain was at Stodmarsh, Kent in 1978. 

Pallid Swift. Marc Heath.

Thanks to Marc Heath for his excellent images of the Pallid Swift he saw at Foreness in Kent, in particular the lower image which shows the bird about to take an insect....Amazing Marc and many thanks.

Nearer home....

White-fronted Goose.Copy Permitted.

An amazing 17 White-fronted Geese - an unprecedented record - were found at Cockersands yesterday in a field at Abbey Farm. Struggling to find a photograph of adult birds, the one above is of a juvenile at Eagland Hill on 17 October....Beware of what you may think is a Greylag in the middle of 10,000 Pink-footed Geese perhaps!

Firecrest Martin Lofgren

And a little gem the Firecrest was found on the South Harbour Wall at Heysham yesterday too, and was still there mid-afternoon today. And these records are topped by a Black Redstart at Heysham Harbour today, and one on the sea defences at Heysham near Grosvenor Road yesterday. 

So who was it said birding the west coast will never be birding the east coast. Well maybe it won't ever be....quite!!

                                     Red Deer Grisedale Hide Leighton Moss. Copyright Paul King.

Leighton Moss RSPB Reserve, Lancashire. Autumnwatch 8.00pm BBC 2 Tuesday for four there.

Yes you guessed it....I'm off the birding scene once again.

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