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Bird Spotting
There are Great Crested Grebes wintering on Hainault Country Park lake. The photos I took this morning aren't good enough to put up, but are good enough to identify the Grebes in their winter plumage.

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Of course, it helps no end that there's only one serious contender for a confusion species, and a very rare one at that.


Also that Great Crested Grebes are a recorded species on that lake.

(I don't claim your expertise. I tend to take a photo that will give me something to refer to, then check distribution etc.)

Edited at 2009-12-05 07:04 pm (UTC)

The only real confusion species is a winter plumage Red-necked Grebe, which can turn up on inland waterways just about anywhere in the country. It's somewhat smaller than the Great Crested, noticeably stockier, with a distinctly white chin, and the dark crown extends down to eye level. The last one I saw, some years ago now, did give me some initial ID problems, largely due to the appalling weather at the time. I thought at first it might be a Slavonian Grebe, and no way did I think it might be a Great Crested.

Yes, that's the one the RSPB site gives as a possible confusion. However, the bill on the bird I photographed is pinkish, not a dark one with a yellow base.

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