Winter at Holme Bird Observatory (please click for clip)

Monday, 6 September 2010


The start to the autumn at Holme has been spectacular to say the least, with scarcities including 4+ Barred Warblers, Icterine Warbler, Wood Warbler, Wryneck, 2 Red-backed Shrikes and a Red-necked Phalarope, but today this was trumped by a superb ARCTIC WARBLER (pictured above by Rob Gordan), only the 3rd Holme record, that was trapped and ringed on the NOA reserve in the morning. It wasn't seen during the afternoon but was seen again briefly but well in the evening, although it couldn't be relocated after this sighting either despite searching. The bird was carrying very little fat and with rain setting in just after dusk it should still be present tomorrow.

All Holme Arctic Warbler records are listed:

10th September 1984
5th September 1999
6th-12th September 2010 (photographed; J. Andrews, S. Barker et. al.)

A bird previously accepted as an Arctic Warbler, present 14th-19th October 1976 (many observers), was rejected on review and reidentified as a Greenish Warbler (following concerns raised initially by S. Joyner and D. Holman), almost certainly the first Western Paleartic record of 'Two-barred' Greenish Warbler (plumbeitarsus), although the photographic and descriptive evidence 'narrowly failed to meet the high acceptance threshold required by a first for Britain' (see full review in British birds February 2003 Vol. 96 No. 2).

The Holme Arctic Warbler is the first twitchable bird in the county since the 1999 record at the same site.

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