Friday, 18 March 2011

The Colyford Yellow Wagtail - a UK First?

The grey Yellow Wagtail found by Phil Abbott and Clive Williams at Colyton WTW on 4/12/10 was trapped and ringed on 14/12/10 and last seen 19/12/10.

From the catching and ringing process, a sample of feces and a couple feathers recovered from the mist net, were sent to Dr J. Martin Collinson at the University of Aberdeen for D.N.A analysis. Dr J.M. Collinson is also the chairman of the BOURC.

I am pleased to report that preliminary sequencing results show that it was a male of the eastern tscutschensis/taivana/macronyx group, genetically most similar to tschutschensis. Full results will be published in due course.

There are two other specimens being sequenced now, if neither of these match any of the eastern Yellow Wagtail-types then the Colyford bird will represent the first record for Britain.

I'd just like to thank Dr J.M. Collinson and his team for all their hard work, and for keeping me well informed throughout the process.

Steve