An 'eastern stonechat', I agree, and probably not Stejneger's (on range and on the generally pale colour of this bird, but it should be noted that fading and wear could make firm exclusion of Stejneger's impossible or almost so by late March). Whether it's maurus or a poorly-marked hemprichii or variegatus, I wouldn't like to say, but all of these are, at present, lumped as Siberian Stonechat anyway.
Well, not quite - you have Saxicola rubicola :t: you need to go to Subsaharan Africa to get S. torquatus, on current taxonomy. But you should also get occasional S. maurus and S. stejnegeri in the Netherlands, when the wind blows from the east in October oIn Holland we have only S.torquatus rubicola, which has a tendency to stay over in winter (severe winters are rare nowadays).
Quote: Would appreciate any input.
Unfortunately I have nothing substantial to add to Harry HH's reaction of yesterday; anyway, it made me check the Helm guide "Stonechats - A Guide to the Genus Saxicola" (London, 2002) in my book collection.
Jan van der Brugge