Why a Silver Teal in Yorkshire?
QWe recently went birdwatching to our favourite RSPB reserve, Old Moor in South Yorkshire. It was a windy day at the end of August. From one of the hides, among the Coots and Mallards was a colourful bird we struggled to recognise. Then to the rescue came more knowledgeable folks. They said it was a Silver Teal. When we read up about it at home, we were surprised to see it was found mainly in Brazil, Argentina and other parts of South America. How did it come to be here? Sandra and Tom Peacock
A The bird in question is an escapee from a private collection. While genuinely wild wildfowl can stray thousands of miles outside their usual range (given that they can, unlike passerines for example, put down on the sea for a time to rest), many sightings of such out-of-place species are like this one. This handsome duck (also known as the Versicolour Teal) is, as you say, more often found in South America.