WEEK-BY-WEEK BIRDS TO SEEK: WEEK 41 CRESTS

EVERY WEEK THIS YEAR WE WILL HAVE NEW SUGGESTIONS FOR A DIFFERENT GROUP OF BIRDS TO LOOK FOR TO HELP DEVELOP YOUR #MY200BIRDYEAR LIST

This week, it is Crests

Our smallest birds are the Goldcrest and the Firecrest, also known as kinglets or just crests. They are closely related to warblers, especially resembling the leaf warblers (genus Phylloscopus), which includes the Chiffchaff and Willow Warbler.

Goldcrest

Goldcrest

Goldcrest

Goldcrest

Goldcrest

This tiny bird is common throughout the country, with a population in excess of 600,000 pairs. They are mainly associated with coniferous trees, though can be found in mixed and deciduous woods. Often seen hovering or flitting about in high twigs, but will come down, too, and can be very confiding and fearless. Duller than the Firecrest in overall colour, concentrate particularly on the head end: the face is ‘open’ with no eye-stripe or supercilium (stripe above the eye). There is a thin black line extending down from the gape. The high pitched song ends in a rapid, complex flourish

Firecrest

Firecrest

Firecrest

Firecrest

Firecrest

A bird on the increase as a breeding bird in the UK (with about 1,000 or so pairs), the pretty Firecrest is still a pretty scarce bird. A cleaner brighter bird than the Goldcrest,;again concentrate on the front ehd. The face is boldly marked with a dark eyestripe and a bold white supercilium. The underparts are white, the upperparts brighter green, and note the orange shoulder area. The accelerating high pitched song lacks the final flourish of the Goldecrest.

All photos from Alamy