‘Grey-bellied Brant’ is just one of the ‘new’ bird identification challenges that have emerged during the last 20 or so years, a period in which digital photographs, sound recordings and DNA analysis have become more or less mainstream birding tools. Yet the Grey-bellied Brant is unusual in that it is, taxonomically, still in no man’s land. At the moment it is not recognised as a species or subspecies by the major taxonomic authorities and as a consequence records are not assessed formally by BBRC and BOURC. James McCallum’s paper describing a returning bird in north Norfolk goes some way to filling the vacuum in the official record. His paper is not just a valuable summary of the movements of this individual (and a timely reminder to goose-watchers to look out for it in the coming months), but a guide to the bird’s identification that will help many birders to be more alert to the potential occurrence of this subtle but distinctive goose – whatever its taxonomic status.
510 BB eye: The digital issue 2.0 Stephen Menzie
512 News and comment Adrian Pitches
515 A ‘Grey-bellied Brant’ in Norfolk James McCallum
533 Report on scarce migrant birds in Britain in 2018 Part 2: passerines Steve White and Chris Kehoe
555 North American landbirds in the Western Palearctic: a review of species missing from the British List Ross Ahmed
575 Recent reports
577 My patch