Monthly Archives: January 2011

Coues’s Arctic Redpoll No.3

1st winter – 9th March 1996

Recorded as 1st winter male. Wintersett Reservoir, West Yorkshire

Wing length: 76mm

Width of dark streak on longest undertail covert- 1.0mm

Length of unstreaked white rump: 0 mm . (Instead recorded as 14 mm with fine indistinct streaking through rump)

Credit for trapping and photographing  goes to Pete Smith, the late Philip Harrison and John Gardner

This is Mr. Streaky. Easily overlooked. Bound to cause some angst!

Coues’s Arctic Redpoll No.2

1st winter  – 9th March 1996

Recorded as 1st winter male. Wintersett Reservoir, West Yorkshire

Wing length: 73mm

Width of dark streak on longest undertail covert: 1.8mm

Length of unstreaked white rump: 12mm

Credit for trapping and photographing  goes to Pete Smith, the late Philip Harrison and John Gardner

This has pretty streaky looking flanks to me. If the rump were hidden I think I could easily overlook it.

Coues’s Arctic Redpoll No.1

Adult male  – 9th March 1996

Wintersett Reservoir, West Yorkshire

What follows are photos of 7 different trapped Arctic Redpolls- with very grateful thanks to the guys mentioned below as well as Steve Denny and John Hewitt who sorted out the pics. They range from some pretty obvious ones including adult males and first winters- to some pretty scary ones. I am not challenging any of the identifications; they saw the birds, examined them and recorded relevant details. I am just reflecting on them. They also trapped over 500 Mealy Redpoll- so were well and truly in the Redpoll ID Zone!

These photos help highlight a few aspects of identifying Coues’s Arctic Redpolls.

  • The variable appearance of upperpart tones(especially in different light/ angle of viewing)
  • Some Arctic  Redpolls can be quite brown –toned above
  • Rump streaking is ‘normal’ in Arctic Redpolls- most of these birds have some
  • Flank  streaking is pretty well-marked on one or two birds
  • You can see some variation  in long undertail covert streaks
  • I think a couple of them would be easy to overlook in the field (as expected!)
  • One of them might never get identified in the field!

 

Wing length: 77mm

Width of dark streak on longest undertail covert- not recorded, so presumably pure white

Length of unstreaked white rump: 21mm

Credit for trapping and photographing  goes to Pete Smith, the late Philip Harrison and John Gardner

This has huge white rump (21 mm) even if it does have ‘bits of streaks’ some pale pink on rump and delicate pink on breast (not hidden red as on male Mealies). It is actually quiet streaky to my eye on the flanks and the bill a bit ‘spikey’.

Same bird also in the field:

Places Filling Fast…

for Gull Master Class Days.


Friday 4th March,  Albert Village Lake, Leicester

10 am to 4 pm …………………………£18 per person

The Albert Village day is nearly  full. Recent good gulls have included Glaucous, Iceland, Yellow-legged  and up to 4 Caspian Gulls (thanks to Steve Lister and David Gray).

Book soon to avoid disappointment.


Saturday 5th March, Rainham Marshes, London

10 am to 4 pm ……………………….. £21 per person

with Dominic Mitchell (Mr Slaty-backed!) Recent good birds have included Glaucous, Caspian, Yellow-legged and Mediterranean Gull and of course apparent Slaty-backed Gull. Don’t miss out!

For bookings or enquiries/more info:

email: martin.go@virgin.net

Trapped Arctic Redpolls from 1995-1996

The Wintersett 11

Between November 1995 and April 1996, an amazing 11 Arctic Redpolls (all Coues’s Arctic Redpolls spp exilipes) were trapped as well as 530 Mealy Redpolls and 168 Lesser Redpolls at Wintersett Reservoir, West Yorkshire.

A couple of years back, Steve Denny arranged for me to have a set of photos taken by (the late) Philip Harrison and John Gardener of all 11 trapped Arctics. With this winter’s spread of Arctic Rolls I think these trapped birds will be very instructive. You would easily overlook one or two in the field today! Will try to put some shots up in next few days. For starters an adult male Arctic Redpoll trapped on 9th March 1996. Photo by late Philip Harrison. (click on three times for extra large image size)

Slaty-backed Gull- Connecticut

Couple of nice photos

This one’s paler than your average bear but (I think after some hot debate) concluded to be a Slaty-backed Gull. If you are into the subject you will already have seen photos of this bird.  Julian Hough sent me these yesterday very nice especially in comparison to GBB’s (Great Black-backed Gulls) on the standing shot. I won’t attempt to pontificate on this one!

4th winter Slaty-backed from Hartford, Connecticut, Nov. 2009, Julian Hough.

 

Gull Master Class Days

Advanced Info:

I will be leading 2 Gull ID Master Class days– catering for all levels of experience. Hope to include a free special booklet with new (previously unseen) ID material.

Friday 4th March,  Albert Village Lake, Leicester

10 am to 4 pm aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa£18 per person


Saturday 5th March, Rainham Marshes, London

10 am to 4 pm aaaaaaaaaaaaaaa £21 per person


Places limited so might be good to book early.

For bookings or enquiries/more info:

email: martin.go@virgin.net