Monday, 27 April 2009

'Channel' Wagtail at Cresswell Pond

Looking at pictures on ST and Northumbrian Birding earlier today of the two 'Blue Headed' Wagtail at Cresswell Pond. One of them has an obviously paler head and at first I began to wonder about the Eastern race beema I even rang ADMC to get him to take a look at the pics.
A bit of digging tonight and I think it more likely that it is an example of what has become known as 'Channel Wagtail' the best description of which that I've found is as follows:

"Nominate Blue-headed Wagtail and Yellow Wagtail form a narrow hybrid zone in northern France. Birds from this zone vary in appearance, but one type, which resembles nominate Blue-headed Wagtail (except that the blue tones to the head are paler and more mauve and the white the head is more extensive, particularly on the throat, ear-coverts, and supercilium) is colloquially referred to as Channel Wagtail"

I'm not sure whether this hybrid has been recorded in Northumberland before will need to do some further digging. I have attached a video from Surfbirds of a similar bird from April 2008 considered to be of this type for contrast.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I think the comments from IF are spot on!It indeed looks like a variant of Blue headed now known as Channel Wagtail.