GRC Blog

Welcome to the GRC Recorders pages. This blog provides details on all the relevant news of Glamorgan’s scarcer birds, plus all BBRC & WRP decisions that affect us locally. It will also be used to document the status and occurrence of these scarcer species and we welcome contributions from anyone with photographs, artwork or documentation of rarities past, present and future. The GRC also welcomes all seawatching news from around Glamorgan and news of passage migrants in spring & autumn, uncommon birds in our area and unusual behaviour.

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The Glamorgan Rarities Committee, in conjunction with the Glamorgan Bird Club & Gower Wildlife , have agreed to co-operate with the Welsh Ornithological Society in the sharing of bird records & photographs in the interest of keeping accurate records and to promote birdwatching in North, Mid & South Wales.

Thursday, 3 January 2013

Lesser Scaup revisited

Nice find yesterday John. I must admit I was happy to go along with your original call, from your photos, before shouts of "Hybrid, hybrid, hybrid..." started filtering through the airwaves. Reading our learned friends comments on here I can see where the issues are. So I was keen to find a way of comparing the original bird with this one to make the features stick in my mind. I was surprised (honestly!) to find that I had taken a video of the Lesser Scaup last year at Cosmeston, on the way back from the Common Yellowthroat, and that it may be useful to some because it was shot under similar conditions to your bird from yesterday.

The bill, more poignantly, the nail are quite different, but that the contrast between the sides of both birds and their backs is particularly different. Certainly it isn't easy to have those difference to mind with nothing to compare. I guess there is a chance that over the next few weeks direct comparison may be made with the original bird if it chooses to return.

Video of last year's drake Lesser Scaup


David Gilmore said...

It was on Lisvane Res, Cardiff this pm [per MCP], who seemed to think the bill/nail looked rather odd for LS.

Phil B said...

Like Mark, I was initially quite taken by this bird, but the more I looked at the images, including those by SPH on another website, the doubts crept in due some anomolous characters. That said, this is a good lookalike and I'd be keen to hear an opinion from anyone who has seen it, what combination of species they consider might explain this bird's appearance?

David Gilmore said...

It was at Prospect Place, Cardiff Bay this pm. Mostly drifting about sleeping I'm afraid, although it did lift its head on a few occasions. As I said this bird doesn't sit right - the nail for one & the bill looks large for LS, giving a broad appearance. The mantle is dark, but the light has been very poor. The wing-bar does extend into the primaries, this was noticeable on SPH's photos. Like you Phil, I would like to know the genetic make-up of this individual - perhaps Greater/Lesser? Are hybrids generally sterile? Could it be a next generation?