2 September 2015

Blyth's Reed Warbler at Nanjizal - a first for Cornwall

In what didn't look like overly-promising weather, the regular autumn mist-netting at Nanjizal continued this morning, producing 93 birds, including five Reed Warblers, four Grasshopper Warblers, three Garden Warblers and what must surely be one of the birds of the autumn in the county! Blyth's Reed Warbler is a long-overdue bird for Cornwall (with a single record from Devon eclipsed by five in Dorset and no fewer than five on the Isles of Scilly), but this didn't detract from the excitement of finding one in a mist-net!

So here are just a few photos and details of the bird, with no doubt more to follow...

Blyth's Reed Warbler will always be a difficult bird to identify in the field, but the rounded wing,
with very short primary projection, can be seen in this bird. Also note the indistinct supercilium,
broad-based bill and the forehead peaking behind the eye.
The identification clincher can be seen in the open wing, with both P3 and P4 (primaries) emarginated:
the narrowing of the outer web of the feather towards the tip of the wing.
On other 'reed' warblers this emargination is only seen on P3.

As if we need to plug the site even more, but any visiting ringers wanting to join the ringing group at Nanjizal can find out more details elsewhere on the blog.

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