Thursday 30 October 2014

YBW - Patch Tick!

Yesterday I found myself a much overdue Yellow-browed Warbler on the patch. It is quite an interesting bird as when I first found it, the bird only called twice and it seemed to be giving a seemingly untypical inornatus call - quite short and subdued compared to the more typical powerful and drawn out call that I am familiar with. I only saw it briefly and it didn't seem the brightest YBW I had ever seen, though I was very conscious of the poor light. The last couple of days here have been very misty and murky on the coast and the light has been terrible! Thanks must go to local birder Matt Knott, who re-found the bird with me later in the afternoon. The bird then appeared to show dark legs and be quite dusky below, possibly showing some similarity to Hume's Leaf Warbler, though both wing bars did appear to be bright and obvious. The weak and short call was niggling me as well as the overall drabness of the bird so I was keen to see it first thing today.

This morning the bird gave a burst of 2-3 minutes of the more classic powerful drawn out "sooo-eet" call and so re-assured me it was just a standard YBW. It never gave great views, but I managed a few photos below. 

Interestingly, the bird does seem to show dark legs and the bill did still appear mostly dark (though "blown up" there is significant pale base to lower mandible) the supercilium doesn't appear that prominent before the eye and it appears quite dusky below. No doubting the prominence of the two wing bars though and the dark margins that enhances them. 
Certainly not the brightest YBW I have ever seen(!), but all in all, a great bird to have on the patch and all good learning.

Yellow-browed Warbler, West Cliffs, Budleigh

Firecrest, West Cliffs Budleigh