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coburni Redwing in the UK (1 Viewer)


Well-known member
London Birder said:
anyone seen any ?

what's the features ?

Best feature probably north westerly winds in the autumn on the northern and western isles ;)

Seriously though, coburni are distinctly darker brown and i think more heavily streaked. Would probably stand out in a mixed flock of iliacus for the above reasons.

Hope that helps, but others might have a more comprehensive answer...


Well-known member
Come to the Outer Hebs, the vast majority here are coburni unless there's a big drift from Scandinavia. Yes they are darker above with more contrasting head patterns, also very often much more heavily marked below with the spotting merging into dark streaks, and often on a less clean white base. The darkness does vary a bit though.

Most pass through in Autumn but some winter here, but most in Ireland, mainland Scotland and Iberia. Spring passage is just starting and probably 90+% of birds most springs passing through the Outer Hebs are coburni. They should stand out in a flock of Scandinavian birds.


Fair Islander

Well-known member
London Birder said:
anyone seen any ?

what's the features ?

London Birder,

I've attached a couple of pics for you. As others have said, coburni are larger and darker (generally). Depending on the wind, we can get good numbers of both here. Certainly when the wind goes Nor'West in October you suddently gets lots of very dark looking Redwings around. It's not too difficult when you have lots to look at (of both types) but ID'ing a lone individual wouldn't be easy. The undertail coverts can be a good feature - dark and messy on coburni, often clean and unmarked on iliacus.


  • iliacus (left) coburni (right) Fair Isle Oct03.JPG
    iliacus (left) coburni (right) Fair Isle Oct03.JPG
    62.6 KB · Views: 335
  • coburni Fair Isle Oct03.JPG
    coburni Fair Isle Oct03.JPG
    48.6 KB · Views: 270
  • iliacus Fair Isle Oct03.JPG
    iliacus Fair Isle Oct03.JPG
    57.8 KB · Views: 239
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