An afternoon spent at Old Lodge was semi-successful. No Crossbills, but quite a few Redpolls, 4 of which were Common. They seemed to occur regularly so there must be more than this number, but edging on the side of caution I stuck with 4 definite sightings. Jon King and then Mick Davis joined me who saw 1 1st winter.
Having seen many in Shetland this autumn of all different plumages and variations, it was nice to get some straight forward birds this time. Makes a change for Sussex.
COMMON REDPOLL - 4
Brambling - 15
Lesser Redpoll - 40
this individual was even paler than the first and also appeared slightly stockier. The gleaming white undertail coverts and axillaries and streaking on the flanks were all promising, and eventually the rump was seen well, being paler, but more streaked then the first individual. As this bird originally had 3 Lessers around it, it stood out like a sore thumb.
The other 2 Common Redpolls were seen briefly but one bird was seen 'back on' whilst preening fortunately. It showed a lovely streaked white rump and obvious pale streaks on the mantle and a clear white wingbar, and a male as well with a flash of pink on the breast looking much larger and longer than the accompanying Lesser, being paler and supporting a pale rump with no pink seen.
Sunset at Old Lodge - like being back in Ethiopia