Friday, June 7, 2013

Spring Wheatears

Wheatears are one of the first Spring migrants to appear back in the country, usually sometime in March, but they continue to arrive well into May. These beautiful chats are always a welcome sight whenever they appear, but the first sighting is often of a white rump disappearing over a grassy tussock or sand dune as the birds fly away. Their name is reportedly a corruption of the Anglo-Saxon "white-arse", a totally appropriate epithet. While searching for Dotterel on Anglesey last month I managed to photograph a few of these beauties along with another common migrant, a Swallow perched on a wire by a small farm.

Male Wheatears are very smart-looking birds.

Female Wheatears have a more subtle plumage.

This Swallow was observed preening
outside a farm building.

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Norfolk in October

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