Wednesday, 27 November 2013


A female Red-crested Pochard was found on the canal basin at Glasson Dock last Saturday, the bird remains there this Wednesday morning and I had good views of it on Monday.

Red-crested Pochard Female. Hans Schick.

The Red-crested Pochard (RCP) breeds in scattered populations across Europe, and more abundantly through Central Asia to North West China. 

A naturalised population of RCP is being established in Britain, it is especially centred on Cotswold Water Park where numbers in the early 1990's stood at up to sixty birds but now probably stands at in excess of 130. Smaller numbers occur at gravel pits in Oxfordshire, Berkshire, and Lincolnshire. There appears to be no doubt that natural vagrancy occurs though this is difficult to substantiate, the species is kept at more than 200 wildfowl collections in lots of wires to hop over!

The status of the RCP in Lancashire must be considered to be downright dubious, and there is no real evidence that it has ever occurred in a wild state in the county, even though there is a wild population of several thousand in Spain, with much smaller numbers close to our shores in France and Germany. 

The first record of RCP in Lancashire was of a bird at Leighton Moss in June 1965, it was seen there again two months later in August, and a male wintered at Scorton in 1973-74, there has been a string of Lancashire records since but a natural vagrant has yet to be proved. 

I'm grateful to Hans Schick for the use of his image of the female Red-crested Pochard.


Stonechat Brian Rafferty

As the Stonechat has had no mention on Birds2blog for a few weeks, I'm unable to resist this brilliant image of the one BR saw at Rossall Point recently. The bird was seen on the golf course perimeter, an almost guaranteed annual sighting here. Thanks Brian, another excellent picture of the delightful little Stonechat.  


Warren Baker said...

Once had a nice male RCP here Pete, almost certain it was a 'proper' one.

Very nice Stonechat image, well envious of that one!

Lancashire and Lakeland Outback Adventure Wildlife Safaris said...

It's about as 'good' as the Ross's Goose down the road and better than the closer RB Goose - no rings - good enough for me ;-)



Adam said...

cute duck