Sunday 17 March 2013

Lapland Buntings at Rosenannon, Cornwall

Up to 100 Lapland Buntings have been logged at Rosenannon Downs this winter - quite an impressive count.  Today though I counted about 37 birds flying around the moor.    This number in itself is still a respectable count, though  "Lapbunts" seem to be on the increase in Cornwall.  In 2011, a massive 150+ birds were found at Port Isaac in early March. This was a Cornwall record number. 20 plus were also at the Lizard Point in January 2012.  A smaller flock of 15 birds associating with five Snow Buntings have wintered at Treen Common this year.  Historically, there has always been a handful of records annually, mostly from North Cornwall but not in such high numbers as we are finding now.

The species breeds in Arctic Europe, Greenland and Canada.  It is highly migratory and is one of the few passerines which routinely migrates back and forth across the Atlantic.

Some males today were showing signs of breeding plumage and one bird seemed to be practicing courtship display.  The three images below were taken this morning:

Female Lapland Bunting

Male Lapland Bunting skulking

Male Lapland Bunting at Rosenannon

1 comment:

  1. Well done Steve, shall I pop up with the brushcutter in the morning so we can get an uninterrupted view next time!
    They always seem to prefer the long grass don't they?
    The male on the gorse stem was obviously the exception.... bit of a poser I reckon.