Not many words needed in this post I will let the images I got of that Willow Tree Fen bird speak for themselves.
Am posting a set images from different angles so all round plumage can be seen by those interested in that type of thing.
I discovered this little beaut with a tit flock at the works the other day, it’s almost certainly of an Eastern form. It promptly flew to the private area, strictly no access but I did get temporary permission. Its an absolute blighter to get on to for more than split seconds, flitting about as if on steroids, feeding madly with goldcrests and up to five chiffys. I have managed one very short video, the above photos are video stills.
It has brown upperparts, the section just behind the nape looking very sandy coloured. Underparts are buffy/off white, contrasting strongly with the white throat and it has a fairly well defined mask. The bird appeared to look very sleek and slim at times with the tail seemingly very long. Havn’t heard it call. Although my assessment is made up from the many glimpses and ‘bits’ of the bird I keep getting, the whole general appearance is different to the summer birds normally seen. The short video can be viewed on utube, To view search: Lesser whitethroat at Marston Feb 2017
Sifting through the greylags at Marston revealed a couple of pink-footed geese, one Canada (unusual here), PZB the neck-collared Windermere greylag and some greylags with orange legs. This isn’t unusual, in fact about fifteen percent of the flock had a degree of orangey-ness in their legs and you often come across them. The level of pink also varies. Bird books don’t often mention this detail, (probably no one gives a ****!) In his brilliant new book, Wildfowl, Sebastien Reeber hints that the colours become brighter at pre-breeding times.
The south Lincolnshire area continues it’s recent good form. This first winter male was spotted (pardon the pun) on Friday. It is more than likely of the red-spotted form, from Scandinavia/Northern Europe. Close views show a very small reddish area, above the blue, not sure if this is conclusive for red spot, but it’s where the red would be in an adult. Anyway, it’s a cracking little bird, pretty fearless, and seemed to be finding plenty to eat in the harsh conditions. Frost, sleet, rain and very cold winds weren’t bothering it too much, amazing when you think they normally over-winter in Africa or Northern India. I suspect that it will be provided with mealworms soon.