22 June 2012

Black-headed Bunting(s)??

A male Black-headed Bunting was found by Glan & Anne Evans and Carol Mckee in their Carmarthenshire garden on the 18th. Interestingly a male was also photographed in a garden in Godre'r Graig in the Tawe Valley on the afternoon of 17th. I've not seen photographs of the Godre'r Graig bird yet, but the Carmarthenshire bird is distinctive in that it has a small black bib, a feature that Black-headed Bunting is not supposed to show! The two obvious questions are, a) do the records relate to the same bird? (which hopefully photo's will prove one way or the other), and b) is the bird a full-blooded BHB? If if wasn't for the bib I doubt there would be any question about this. (images (c) G. Evans)


Clive Ellis said...

Some of the photos i have seen of BHB in northern India show this black bib.Certainly what it says on the packet.Cracking find all the same.Could it be an escapee?

Barry Stewart said...

Thanks Clive. BWP states 'a few may have speckled or wholly black throat', so the credibility of this bird looks far better than I originally thought. As for it being an escapee, there were none of the usual features that would suggest this. It's the peak time of year for the species so hopefully this one will go through without a hitch and be added to both the Glamorgan and Carmarthenshire county lists.