Hey there everyone,
My wife and I have recently joined the RSPB following a wonderful week in Shetland which illuminated us to the myriad birds we have for company here in the UK. On Sunday we headed over to Tudeley Woods in Kent and amongst Long Tail Tits, Great Tits, Blue Tits and Chiffchaffs, we spotted this little guy and we were wondering if it was perhaps the rarer Common 'Mealy' Redpoll of the Lesser variety? We're pretty new to identifying close relations so I thought I'd open this up to the experts
I've posted a couple of images below - apologies for the quality but this little chap was a little way away.
Any ideas would be welcome - thanks
Hi goonfish, welcome to the Community from Berkshire. I'm glad your trip to Shetland has opened your eyes to the wonderful world of birding. From your first photo the bird appears to be quite a warm brown so on balance I would think it's most likely to be a Lesser Redpoll. This is the species/race that is widespread in the UK. The Common/Mealy Redpoll is a relatively scarce winter visitor. It's a bit larger than the Lesser and is said to have a slightly "colder" appearance. Personally, I've never seen one in the UK . Sorry I can't be more definitive. You might this factsheet from the BTO interesting. www.bto.org/.../gbw-lesser-redpoll-factsheet.pdf
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Happiness is an adult Hen Harrier that hasn't been shot, trapped or poisoned. Happiness is a rare commodity in the English uplands.
In reply to John B (not the sloop either):
In reply to goonfish:
Just as a quick follow up, although I haven't seen a Common Redpoll in the UK I did get a rather poor shot of one in Finland about 8 years ago.
I think this illustrates John's point about the "peroxide" look.
The lack of pink on the breast of your bird is probably because it's a female. An adult male at this time of year has a wonderful pink blush on the breast.
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