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Two-barred crossbill (Loxia leucoptera)
Two-barred crossbill (Loxia leucoptera)
This adult female was ringed on August 2nd, and found to have been born in spring 2010. Note the two characteristic white bars on the wings not seen on the common crossbills.
The two-barred crossbills are here again

Adult two-barred crossbill male.
Adult two-barred crossbill male.
Ringed on the 2nd of August 2011.

Two-barred crossbill and common crossbill
Two-barred crossbill and common crossbill
Adult two-barred crossbill male (left) compared to a juvenile common crossbill. Notice the two broad, white bars on the wing of the two-barred crossbill that are not seen on the common crossbill.

The Lista lighthouse area is invaded by two-barred crossbills again. The first ones showed up toward the end of July, and per August 3rd, we have estimated that there are a few tens of individuals in the plantation. It is nine years since the last invasion.

By M. Wold

From a distance one can occasionally see groups of several tens of two-barred crossbills appear above the trees in the planation, and a trip into the plantation with binoculars or a telescope will reveal several smart-looking individuals in the tree tops feasting on cone seeds.

Large populations further east combined with scarcity of food has probably made them migrate west this autumn. The two-barred crossbills breed and winter over in the East of Finland and Russia, and migrate occasionally to Sweden and Norway. Last time we were invaded by two-barred crossbills was in 2002. The first individuals started turning up during the second week of August, and by the end of the month over 100 individuals were estimated to reside in the plantation. Two-barred crossbills continued to be observed during the autumn and winter.

Yesterday, an extra mist net was put up in the plantation, and two individuals were caught and ringed, an adult male and a female.

The two-barred crossbills can be seen also elsewhere on Lista, particularly in plantation where there are conifers. The plumage is similar to the common crossbill, but can easily be recognized by the two broad white bars on the wings.

We expect that the two-barred crossbills will stay with us throughout the autumn and into the winter season.

Ringing numbers
This season2761
Top 3 today:
Common Starling10
Blue Tit5
Detailed log

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Seasonal deviation
Little Auk2-98%
Spotted Nutcracker4-97%
Greater Scaup1-95%
Sedge Warbler19-95%
Northern Lapwing103-95%
Carrion Crow46+260%
European Goldfinch1242+250%
Eurasian Collared Dove75+249%
Horned Lark58+232%
Common Buzzard204+230%
View deviation of seasons

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  Bird of the week - Common Crossbill

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