Waxwings invade the UK

Waxwings invade the UK

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Added by January 4, 2017

Bird lovers are being treated to spectacular views of waxwings, a rarely seen winter visitor from Russia, feeding on the red berries from rowan trees in supermarket car parks, industrial estates, new housing developments and parks up and down the UK.

15682645_10154808704892141_803532268_nWaxwings breed within the belt of boreal forest that extends from Scandinavia, through Russia and across to the Pacific coast and only find their way to the UK in large numbers during hard winters when food is more difficult to find. The last big influx was in 2012.

The colourful invaders are slightly smaller than a starling with a silky brown and pale grey plumage, a black and white eye-stripe, a crest, a square-cut tail and pointed wings. Some of the wing feathers have red tips which is said to look a bit like sealing wax, hence the birds common name.

To find out where waxwings have been spotted near you check out Waxwing UK’s twitter feed here.


The short piece of footage below was recorded in Warrington in December 2016.

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