Overwintering Firecrests in breeding areas in Buckinghamshire

Overwintering Firecrests in breeding areas in Buckinghamshire

Abstract

Firecrests Regulus ignicapilla have occurred in small numbers in winter in Buckinghamshire. However, birds from the small but expanding breeding population appeared to be absent during the winter, with the few wintering birds in the county apparently coming from farther afield. These wintering birds would typically be in waterside habitat or suburban parkland, quite different from the habitat in which birds breed in Buckinghamshire. However, recent observations have shown a growing number of Firecrests overwintering within breeding areas in the county, and evidence from one colour-ringed male suggests that these wintering birds are the same birds that breed in these territories during summer. This increase in birds apparently remaining on their breeding grounds year-round mirrors observations of birds in Hampshire and Norfolk/Suffolk.

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