Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Yellow Not Rustic

All morning I’d been watching Yellowhammers, also known as yellow buntings, as they arrived to feed on a mound of spilt wheat, and with 40+ sightings in three, fours and fives, I reckoned on at least 20 individuals involved in the comings and goings. Having caught a couple of the yellow buntings Emberiza citrinella I’d taken the nets down when a text came through about a rather rare Rustic Bunting Emberiza rustica glimpsed on migration through Heysham, about 25 miles from my ringing spot on Rawcliffe Moss. Just as well I took a couple of pictures, the buntings I caught were definitely of a yellow cast rather than a rustic hue.

Yellowhammer

Yellowhammer

In addition to the Yellowhammers I also caught 4 Goldfinch, a single Chaffinch and a Linnet. The Linnet was a recapture from a ringer elsewhere - Y376420 anyone?

The light was so gloomy this morning I had to use ISO800.

Linnet

Chaffinch

Goldfinch

The murky, grey, overcast morning with a hint of a south easterly produced little in the way of visible migration again, the most notable being a loose flock of 40 Fieldfares mysteriously heading due west. Maybe the Rustic Bunting got caught up in the same weather trajectory and went west to Heysham instead of north to Scandinavia?

The photograph is by kind permission of Kjetil Hansen of Norway, a place where Rustic Buntings are fairly common.

Rustic Bunting - permission of Kjetil Hansen

Other sightings this morning: Still a winter flock of 100+ Chaffinch, 40 Linnet, 15 Goldfinch, 2 Jay, 2 Buzzard, 1 Tawny Owl, 1 Corn Bunting, 4 Reed Bunting, 2 Grey Partridge

10 comments:

Christian said...

I love Yellowhammers Phil - only seen them on a handful of occasions.

Tatjana Parkacheva said...

Beautiful birds and photos.

Regards and best wishes

Nancy said...

They are all so beautiful...How do you hold them in your hands like that....so wonderful....

Kay L. Davies said...

Hard to know which I like best, Phil. I always like to see your goldfinches. So colourful.
Too bad you didn't get to see the Rustic Bunting.
Nice to hear from you today. I have the redpolls all ready to post on Saturday for the Camera Critters meme. These will be the ones my husband saw a feeder in Medicine Hat. If I can find the ones he took closer to home, I'll post them, too. I didn't see them myself, for which I'm very sorry, but I'm glad Dick got photos.
K

Carole M. said...

an interesting involvement in your study of migratory birds etc. Great photos; I'm surprised how seemingly unafraid the bird appears

La sonrisa de Hiperión said...

Estupendas como siempre tus fotos.

Saludos y un abrazo.

mick said...

Beautiful birds!

Tammy said...

Lovely series of photos! The Yellowhammer is especially stunning!!

Mary Howell Cromer said...

Love that Chaffinch, what superb feather colouration, wonderful Phil! I also really like your friend;s image of the Rustic Bunting, sweet one! Take care~

Stuart Price said...

Rustics have been very thin on the ground here this winter, maybe that bird fancied the other side of Eurasia........

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