Glasgow & West Scotland

First Scots sighting of North American bird on Tiree

Northern Parula
Image caption The bird is believed to have been blown off course while migrating

A tiny North American bird has been spotted in Scotland for the first time.

The Northern Parula - a brightly-coloured warbler - was spotted in the garden of an RSPB officer on the Inner Hebridean island of Tiree.

The bird is believed to have been blown thousands of miles off course by strong westerly winds during its migration to Central America.

About 75 twitchers - people who travel long distances to see rare birds - have so far visited Tiree to see the bird.

The Northern Parula has been recorded previously in England and Northern Ireland, but the Tiree sighting is believed to be a first for Scotland.

It appeared on 25 September in the garden of local RSPB Scotland officer, John Bowler, who has planted native trees to attract such migrant birds.

'Beautiful bird'

"The Northern Parula is such a beautiful bird, it's been a real treat to have it as a visitor on Tiree," he said.

"It caused quite a stir among twitchers, and we've had about 75 people come to the island just to get a glimpse of it, which has been great for the local economy.

"It's actually the first major twitch we've ever had on Tiree, so we've had two firsts!"

Meanwhile, the RSPB said another unusual bird had been sighted in Scotland.

A Glossy Ibis has been spotted at its Mersehead reserve in Dumfries and Galloway.

The large waders, which have the body of a Curlew and the legs of a Flamingo, are more normally seen in continental Europe.

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