Twitchers stumped

Published: 17 Nov 2011 09:193 comments

A TINY creature has bird-watchers across the UK twitching after being spotted in trees close to Torness Power Station last week.

Debate has raged online among ornithologists as to the identity of the bird, with some believing it to be an extremely rare 'Hume's Leaf Warbler' - of which only about six will visit the UK from its native Asia on an average good year.

However, others think it is the Yellow Browed Warbler, still a "prize find" in the UK but several hundred of which visit each year from the Ural Mountains in Russia and Kazakhstan, and north-east China.

The bird, measuring less than four inches in length, was first spotted on November 8 near the Torness car park, and was still in the area last Friday (November 11) - when it attracted the interest of Darren Woodhead, Haddington wildlife artist.

Two other Hume's were reported to have been spotted last week in Shetland and the south of England.

Penicuik photographer Mike Thrower snapped the bird last Wednesday. He said: "The bird in question has plumage that occurs on both birds, making the identification a bit of a nightmare.

"Since last Wednesday, its call has been taped and my photographs studied all over the country by members of rarities committees in Scotland and the majority feel that this is an unusual Yellow Browed Warbler."

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  • JohnMuirBirthplace
    Unregistered User
    Nov 18, 15:23
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    This is great to hear about and only five miles down the coast from John Muir's Birthplace ( the visitor centre/museum that celebrates the life and legacy of the father of conservation and the National Park movement.

    If you are in the area on the search for this rare visitor come and visit us on Dunbar High Street and find out about the young John's passion for "everything that was wild".

    Open Sat 10-5 and Sun 1-5. Admission free.

    01368 865899

    Recommend?   Yes 5     No 0

  • Sealion
    Unregistered User
    Nov 19, 15:42
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    East Lothian is great area for many reasons,it is time the people who are elected to the council started to promote the positives of the county,take for instance the story above ,they may think it is just a story of little rare migrant bird that has turned up

    on the coast of the county ,but they do not relies the potential benefits this brings to

    show what the area has to offer,not just from the economic piont of view,but also to the other benefits ,such as promoting good health advatages for citzens,by going out

    and getting good exercise by just going for walk with the kids and the dog if one has one,

    this helps reduce stress of every day living,so helps reduce the risk of other health problems,so that resources can be utilised to there full potential,that was what the father of conservation John Muir who was from Dunbar tried to achieve in his lifetime.

    So i say this to the councillors and business people of the county,take care of what the

    county of East Lothian has to offer,in this period of doom and gloom .

    Recommend?   Yes 7     No 1

  • graemenolson
    1 post
    Nov 25, 08:55
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    After much debate, referencing

    After much debate, we came up with the same conclusion. A rare, Reed Warbler. Your article has solved the mystery for us! This bird has been seen frequently at 2 locations, over a mile apart.

    Recommend?   Yes 1     No 0