I am a little bit gutted this morning, as we had a bird that I did not get to see. Just before the end of my shift yesterday, I started getting reports of a buzzard onboard. I managed to get away for 5 mins, but found nothing but a female Sparrowhawk. I went back to the original reporters, and they were absolutely adamant that what they saw was a buzzard.
An hour later, I received another buzzard report. My shift was over, so I headed out and scoured the platform, but was left disappointed and frustrated. I knew any buzzard out here was more likely to be Rough-legged than Common, especially at this time of year. This morning, prior to my shift, I again scoured the platform, but to no avail.
The last person who saw the bird, spoke to me an hour or so ago. He is very familiar with Common Buzzard, and was insistent that this bird was different. His emphasised in particular that this buzzard had a particularly long looking neck, and a strange "chicken like head". Later he added that the bird was particularly long tailed for a buzzard. I had mentioned Rough-legged to him, and he went away briefly to view internet photos. It was only while he was away, that the penny dropped, as I remembered Honey Buzzards are long necked.
My spotter returned, stating that during his viewing of Rough-legged buzzard, a Honey Buzzard photo had popped up, and he was 100% sure that was the bird was a Honey.
As I wrote previously, I am gutted I never got my eyes on the bird, but at least I have got an ID. I am wary of adding birds to the list based on description only, however, I think in this case that the description I got was very good, coupled with confirmation from stock photos. Time of year is good, and likelihood of a buzzard out here being a Honey is also good, although rare. Based on this I am listing the bird as.......
34. Honey Buzzard*