Rough Legged Buzzard?

Just a quick question to ascertain whether I may well have seen a rough-legged buzzard in a farmer's field near Edderthorpe (nr Darfield) today? I'm fairly new to birding but am aware that these are relatively rare (especially away from the extreme West - Spurn etc). I did get a fairly good look at it through binoculars (10-15 seconds) and the colours, facial markings, and 'rough' legs match the pictures that I have accessed on-line today. Anyone else seen/know of it or have I more likely seen a common buzzard with distinctive markings? Thanks
  • I’m assuming you saw it fly off then, did you note it’s tail, was it white above and below with a black bar, did the underwing have black carpal joints and did it glide on flat eings?

  • In reply to Rich C:

    Hi Andrew

    Rough legged buzzards and common buzzards can both have large variations in plumage so they can frequently cause confusion, even for the most experienced of birders.

    As Rich says above, there are some clear pointers that can separate the two but they are not always easy to see.

    I do know that statistically speaking, it is more likely to have been a pale buzzard - and we have had one hanging around in the Valley this year. But I've also learnt never to say never and I'm afraid that without seeing a picture or the actual bird, it is very hard to say one way or the other.

    Do keep an eye out though - and we'll certainly do the same. It could be that with another sighting, we can nail it for you.

    Hope that helps

    Regards

    Matthew

  • In reply to Rich C:

    There appears to have been reports last month during late November in both N.Yorkshire and E.Yorkshire so it's more than possible  Andrew !   The experts on here should be able to help you.  

    _________________________________________________________________________

    Regards, Hazel 

    "Each kindness shown to birds or men is sure to flutter back again" 

  • In reply to HAZY:

    Hi Andrew

    Further to the above, John Clarkson, one of the Edderthorpe area regulars and a very experienced birder has been seeing a very pale buzzard in the same area over the last few days so I think we can say with some certainty that is common buzzard rather than a rough legged.

    Hope that helps - even if a less positive answer

    Regards

  • In reply to Rich C:

    Thanks Rich. I was in the car so the 10-15 seconds was due to a car approaching from behind causing me to move on rather than it flying off. My wife has seen it in the same spot earlier this week so I might return tomorrow and attempt to see it in flight if it's still around. Thanks again for your response.

  • In reply to Matthew:

    Thanks so much for the response Matthew. I think that my query was partly a genuine question and partly a request for people in the area to either keep their eye out in order to deny or confirm. As exciting as this was though, I made my way down to RSPB Old Moor after lunch and saw the resident Peregrine so a good all round - regardless of whether I did see a rough legged buzzard or not

  • In reply to HAZY:

    Thanks Hazel. I think without a confirmed sighting or picture I may well never know. However, the fact that people have taken the time to respond just adds more enthusiasm to my new found passion. Thanks