Ruddy Shelducks are those birds, especially in the UK that have a lot of speculation of their origin. There are many feral populations from Europe. A couple of birds have recently been reported at Frodsham over the last couple of days and since I haven't quite been sad enough to 'twitch' these rather handsome birds, my time eventually came today when I gave in ....but I was passing - honest!
I have very little experience in these birds but looking carefully, these are non-breeding birds. Both birds do show a significant white patch on the front of their face which tells me that they could be both females? I don't know, any comments would be much appreciated...
I think the most likely fixture is that these birds are 'genuine' from Europe's feral population although as soon as I typed 'Ruddy Shelduck' into Google ealier, there were 3 or 4 links inside the top 10 advertising them for sale! Nooo, not these two, because their on my list!
Moving on from dodgy ducks to moths... very briefly, these little things were out in force today: a Spindle Ermine Moth
...and also looking good were the good numbers of butterflies. Saw at least 5-6 species including this little Gatekeeper