Posts Tagged ‘Birding tours of norfolk

19
Nov
13

Eventually Crossing Paths

Just look at the snout on these!

It took me three visits to finally connect with the Parrot Crossbills at Holt. I ended up seeing a flock of ten or perhaps more. At least three males and the rest female types; some showing a strong covert bar indicating they were first winters. Even when they are there they can be amazingly elusive as they employ their  ‘make like a pine cone’ hiding strategy. Almost silently they walk and hop around in the top of the pines and larches not making a sound other than the occasional crash of cones released to tumble down through the canopy.

Parrot Crossbill 1

Parrot Crossbill

Parrot Crossbills

2013 11 18 Parrot Crossbill Holt CP Norfolk_Z5A2693

15
May
12

Who knows?

We have talked about the variations of Yellow Wagtails before https://letterfromnorfolk.wordpress.com/2010/04/25/wayward-whimbrel/ and it is a complicated group but a local bird on the hill last week got me taking a few photos. The potato field next to Falcon Cottage has been turning up a few Wheatears (ten together at the time of writing) and it was only a matter of time before Yellow Wagtails found it on their journey north.

The odd bird among three wasn’t a Blue headed. Blue headed are the continental variation (Motacilla flava flava) of our own Yellow Wagtail (M.f. flavissima) and have a wonderfully blue head with a white supercillium, a short sub ocular crescent to match and tiny white chin. It wasn’t a Channel Wagtail either. These are the hybrids of our own Yellow Wagtail and The Blue headed continental birds. The head was not the pale Wedgewood blue it should have been and the white on the throat extended far too far onto the breast. It wasn’t a Syke’s or any of the darker headed varieties either Spanish, Ashy headed, Grey headed or Black headed. What it was … was a very interesting bird. Perhaps best described as a white throated integrade?




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