As regular CFZ-watchers will know, for some time Corinna has been doing a column for Animals & Men and a regular segment on On The Track... particularly about out-of-place birds and rare vagrants. There seem to be more and more bird stories from all over the world hitting the news these days so, to make room for them all - and to give them all equal and worthy coverage - she has set up this new blog to cover all things feathery and Fortean.

Sunday 30 December 2018

Rare Royal Tern makes an appearance on Anglesey

Bird Notes columnist Julian Hughes of RSPB Cymru reveals what birds have been spotted in the past week and lists 10 upcoming birding events
Andrew ForgraveRural Affairs Editor
23:05, 10 DEC 2018
Anglesey's Royal Tern's metal ring suggests it was originally from North America (Image: Tony White)
A Monday lunchtime visit to Traeth Dulas, north of Moelfre, proved an excellent decision by Angleseybirder Tony White, who found a Royal Tern on the incoming tide.
It flew out to sea but was refound at nearby Traeth Lligwy, enabling local birders to catch up with this mega sighting.
It’s not the first Royal Tern to visit North Wales. One on the Llŷn Peninsula in June 2009 relocated to Llandudno for a few hours and attracted birders from across the UK, though its short visit meant that only locals got to see it.
I remember a frantic dash from West to North Shore to follow the bird as it flew across town.
But not all Royal Terns are the same. It’s the second largest species of tern, with populations on both side of the Atlantic.
Recent studies show that Royal Terns nesting in West Africa are genetically distinct from those that breed from North Carolina south to Argentina, and some authorities consider them to be different species.
The problem is that birds from each population look very similar, and the Llandudno bird couldn’t be assigned to one or the other.
This week’s Anglesey bird sports a metal ring on its right leg, consistent with a ringing scheme in North America, indicating its likely origin.


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