Sunday, 4 December 2011

Common Redpoll saves the morning

A cool morning was spent at Beddington Sewage Farm, the south-westerly breeze picking up and getting cooler as the hours ticked by. I stayed close to the hide, scanning both the north and south lakes without too much joy, 2 Shelduck, 18 Gadwall, 40 Shoveler, 150 Teal and 47 Lapwings being the pick. The morning was saved by a low-flying flock of redpolls, that alighted in a nearby Silver Birch. Scoping revealed a smart Common Redpoll amongst the Lessers. These birds were very flighty and after 20 minutes seemed to leave the area. Only myself and Steve Thomas saw the bird. This is not a regular species at Beddington. This autumn has seen a remarkable proportion of 'redpolls' being identified as Commons in Kent and Surrey, with ringing at Leith Hill providing record breaking numbers for the latter county. In the north part of Surrey we have struggled to find them even though most 'redpoll' flocks have been grilled (from such diverse sites as Holmethorpe, Canons Farm and Headley Heath). Hopefully they are now moving further north and will give themselves up more easily.

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