Monday, December 24, 2007

Common (Mealy) Redpoll Marsh Lane.

Photo Midland Bird Images
The Common (Mealy) Redpoll is classed as a Scarce winter visitor, and can sometimes cause confusion. In the field Common Redpolls are noticeably bulkier in appearance when seen along side Lesser Redpolls with usually a bull necked appearance and are overall greyer in colouration.Common Redpolls have greyer upperparts with narrower dark centres and bordered greyish white fringes to the upperparts feathering compared with the much warmer brown toned Lessers.The wingbars formed by the tips of the greater coverts appear clean whitish compared with the buffish on the Lessers, and the fringes of many other feathers such as the primaries tertials and tail feathers are often noticeably whiter. The rump of Common Redpolls is whitish, and is usually lightly streaked but in flight this can often appear as an Arctic Redpoll like white patch. Lesser Redpolls rarely show such a pale rump. Also the dark centres to the undertail coverts are a feature which helps to seperate them from Arctic Redpolls which usually have either just a faint narrow shaft streak on these feathers or are totaly unmarked.

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