29 May 2008

Aberrant Grey Heron

Shot off this evening in search of the reported Purple Heron near Bishton, on arrival it became evident that the bird in question was an odd Grey Heron, either partially melanistic or very heavily soiled. Most of the upperparts were very dark grey and the remiges looked blackish; below, the flanks and part of the breast again appeared blackish whilst much of the belly, breast and neck were tinged an oily/rusty brown. The head and bill were pretty standard Grey Heron, though 'washed' with brownish. It spent most of the time hunched up at the edge of the field and eventually walked off into the field margin, it did not appear a picture of rude health. Unfortunately the weather did not make for quality photography, here's the best I could muster,...

Given the fact that the Purple Heron in Gloucestershire had disappeared a few days ago, I was pretty hopeful of adding to my Gwent list this evening, but nooooo, the curse of Gwent strikes again.

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