13th January 2011 – Redpoll overload…

Having only ever seen one Coues’s Arctic Redpoll before I was quite keen to catch up with another one. So the regular sightings of birds at Rainton Meadows in County Durham, along with plenty of Mealies and Lesser’s for comparison seemed like an opportunity not to be missed! Groups of Redpolls were seen immediately and within ten minutes of our arrival sharp-eyed Colin had picked out a superb Arctic amongst the birds. It soon dropped down on to one of the feeders, but only for a few seconds and then the whole flock took flight and disappeared. Obviously I enjoyed scope views of the bird rather than taking photographs, and we fully expected to see the bird again. Wrong. We soon found out that the Redpoll flocks were incredibly nervy and mobile, often perching above the feeders for only a few seconds before disappearing for ten or fifteen minutes at a time. This was a pattern that continued over the next four hours and by 1430hrs we’d not seen another Arctic. However it was really entertaining trying to go through each flock that appeared, and fantastic to see so many Mealy Redpolls, which itself is a bird I rarely see anyway. A constantly ‘buzzing’ Willow Tit also kept us amused whilst waiting for the Redpolls to appear.

And here’s a few shots of our Bramblings in the garden…

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One Response to 13th January 2011 – Redpoll overload…

  1. Ghost of Stringer says:


    That lower bird in your second pic looks like the 1st yr male exilipes thats has been frequenting the site. Difficult to say for sure on that one pic alone, but it’s certainly not far off !

    E-mail me and I’ll send you some pics of the bird I am talking about.

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