Siberian Blue Robin added to Category A of the British List
The British Ornithologists' Union Records Committee (BOURC) has added Siberian Blue Robin (Luscinia cyane) to Category A of the British List following the acceptance of a bird seen at Minsmere, Suffolk on 23 October 2000.
The bird was seen by only a few lucky observers for less than an hour, late in the afternoon of 23rd October. It was not photographed, but was sufficiently well described to confirm identification beyond doubt. It was either a first-year bird or an adult female. The species is known to be relatively commonly kept in captivity, but the circumstances of this record point towards the bird being a natural vagrant rather than an escape. The date and location were both consistent with natural occurrence, and coincided with the appearance of many other Siberian vagrants in Europe, including a remarkable 28 Radde's Warblers (which share a similar range to Siberian Blue Robin) in the UK, a Brown Shrike in Germany and two Siberian Accentors in Finland. Another sighting of a Siberian Blue Robin occurred in Spain five days earlier.
The Siberian Blue Robin breeds in Eastern Siberia and China and winters in Southeast Asia. There are only two previous records of the species in the Western Palearctic, one from Sark, Channel Islands on 27 October 1975 (the first record of the species away from its known breeding and wintering range) and the other from the Ebre Delta, Tarragona, Spain on 18 October 2000.
This addition brings the British List to 560 species (Category A = 538; Category B = 13; Category C = 9).