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Monday, 22 December 2008


I present here (by kind courtesy of Josh Jones the photographer) a selection of images depicting what I consider to be a relatively standard first-winter SCANDINAVIAN ARCTIC REDPOLL Carduelis exilipes. Such birds have heavily cloaked feathers on the nape and tarsi, predominantly pure gleaming white undertail-coverts (apart from the odd long dark shaft-streak), very white underparts (first-winters are much more noticeably streaked) and extensive, unstreaked, pure white rumps. Essentially, the ground colour is white (with occasionally buffish infiltration) with distinct white 'tramlining' on the mantle and a pale head (with contrasting ear-coverts). The bill is proportionately short, with a straight culmen. The wing-bars and fringing are pure white.