Rare Siberian red-flanked bluetail bird drops in on region - The Solihull Observer

Rare Siberian red-flanked bluetail bird drops in on region

Solihull Editorial 29th Oct, 2020   0

A RARE visitor from Siberia has been spotted in a nearby nature reserve owned by Worcestershire Wildlife Trust and Warwickshire Wildlife Trust.

The red-flanked bluetail bird was first spotted at Lion Wood nature reserve at the Portway, by the home of Birmingham Solihull RFC, just off the A435 yesterday, Wednesday, October 29.

The species breed in Siberia and usually overwinter in south east Asia but a small number come to western Europe each year and are now basically annual visitors to the UK, although only in small numbers.

Reserves officer Eleanor Reast of Worcestershire wildlife Trust said: “Only about 150 have ever visited the UK and this is the first time one has been seen in the West Midlands – they’re more regularly found at coastal hot spots where such rare migrant birds are more likely to arrive.

“Their appearance in the UK may be a result of a westward expansion in their breeding range as they’re now starting to breed in tiny numbers in Finland.

They can be very skulking and elusive birds and the one in Lion Wood is proving to be so – hiding in a holly bush for considerable periods of time.

“We expect that lots of people will turn up to catch sight of such a rare bird.

“We’re asking them to park respectfully and with consideration to our neighbours and to stick to paths to avoid trampling the ground flora as following work in the woodland there is regenerating heather and bilberry.

“We also ask that everyone respects social distancing.”

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