Spent the afternoon down at the Swannery with Steve for a late afternoon ringing session in the withy bed. He’s had quite a good ringing week down there with a little flurry of Redpoll, four Bearded Tits and a Siskin which is an odd capture for the site. This afternoon was exceptionally quiet with just a Common Chiffchaff ringed up until sunset but just as we were going to shut down the nets, a small tit flock appeared in the withy nets. With them was a very different Chiffchaff and before extracting it I could see it was an ‘interesting’ Chiff. A few seconds later once out of the net it was clearly a Siberian Chiffchaff type thing. Did all the necessaries and as the light was starting to go and temperatures dropping we let it go on its way pretty quickly to go find somewhere to settle for the night. Got a few photo’s in the fading light.
As you can see, the green tones are restricted pretty much to the wings, also the rump and tail which you can’t see from that photo. The head lacks any yellow and green. The underparts are completely pale and buff with no yellow. Legs were very dark, as was the bill, though the lower mandible has some paleness but I don’t think that matters too much. Annoyingly the bird didn’t call at all, even on release but Steve Groves (of http://stevesswannerysightings.blogspot.co.uk/ ) has heard a Siberian Chiffchaff at the Swannery over the last week or so. I’d guess this bird was the culprit!