Saturday, 18 December 2010

Mealy Miny Mo

Nigel Foggo found seven Mealy Redpoll (and a Northern Bullfinch) at Old Widdrington Tip yesterday morning and Stewart kindly alerted me to them. I had an hour to spare in the afternoon so I nipped up for a quick look. A 200 strong mixed flock that I estimated as 50% Goldfinch 30% Siskin and 20% Redpoll was active feeding on Alder. The light wasn't too good so the images are record shots and a bit of a jigsaw when it comes to ID but I had 3-4 clear Mealy Redpoll. A second visit this morning and Mike Hodgson had counted 10 by mid-morning, ADMc and I later had a minimum of seven, though there were almost certainly more.


abbey meadows said...

I'd be very happy with those 'record' shots alan. I couldn't get close enough for any photos yesterday.. good stuff Alan

Anonymous said...

Why is the very white one with only very fine undertail covert streaks (pic #5) not an Arctic Redpoll?

Looks a better candidate than the photos I've seen of the Rainton Meadows (Durham) Arctic claim.

alan tilmouth said...

Why is not a Mealy? Judging by the UTC alone would be rather hasty!

Personally I think the bill looks quite large even in that picture, probably too large for Arctic.

I didn't get any rumps on these birds but after several hours Saturday with at least two other experienced observers nothing was seen that would suggest anything other than Mealy were present.

Andrew Kinghorn said...

Nice photos Alan. Great to catch up with you again.

In reply to the anonymous poster about pic5#, I have to agree completely with Alan here. It has 3 or more streaks on the UTC's, Arctics should show a shaft streak or nothing at all. They shouldn't show numerous streaks on the UTC's. Perhaps more time in the field with these birds might help anon poster.