Twitchers flock to Wakefield in search of Blyth’s Pipit

IT MIGHT not be much to look at, but this “unimpressive” little brown bird is causing quite a stir in Yorkshire.

Tuesday, 9th December 2014, 3:10 pm
The Blyth's Pipit photographed by enthusiast Mick Hemingway

Hundreds of enthusiasts flocked to Wakefield’s Calder Wetlands reserve today to catch a glimpse of a rare Blyth’s Pipit which has been spotted in the skies.

It is the first recorded sighting of the bird, which breeds in Mongolia, in the region. Elsewhere in the UK there have been only a handful of visits, the last of which came around a decade ago.

“It’s pretty unimpressive to look at, but people have been coming from all over the country,” said Darren Starkey, senior site manager at Calder Wetlands.

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Twitchers at Calder Park near Pugneys in Wakefield where a Blyth's Pipit was spotted

“They are a committed bunch.”

Experts believe the Blyth’s Pipit is a youngster which has lost its way on its first migration. They are unable to tell the sex or age of the bird, but it is not believed to be at risk.

Mr Starkey added: “It is a long way from where it intended to be, but it has been around all day and it has not shown any signs of any great inclination to go anywhere else. I don’t think it’s beyond the realms of possibility that it will stick around for quite a while.”