THE BIRDING COMMUNITY E-BULLETIN
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Citrine Wagtails are wet-area songbirds that range from western Russia to central Siberia and northeastern China southward to parts of Iran, Pakistan, and northwestern India. At this time of year, the species should be wintering in the Indian subcontinent, southern China, or Southeast Asia. There has been only one record for this species in North America – a bizarre occurrence in Mississippi for two days during the winter of 1992.
With this in mind, when David and Adele Routledge found a wagtail near Courteney, Vancouver Island, British Columbia, they were hardly thinking “Citrine Wagtail.” The bird they discovered was first thought to be a Yellow Wagtail, a rare enough bird, but then the speculation shifted to White Wagtail, another Eurasian rarity. When the wagtail was relocated and photographed on 17 November, it was ultimately identified as the far rarer Citrine Wagtail. If you are unfamiliar with wagtails, check the National Geographic guide, or look up wagtails in any European field guide. Citrine Wagtail is an astounding find in North America since it is a species which properly belongs in the Indian subcontinent, southern China, or Southeast Asia at this season.