Over the last month, small numbers of a beautiful, exotic looking bird have been arriving in Britain… not from the Mediterranean or Africa but from Scandinavia.
The bird in question is the waxwing. A bird about the size of a starling, and with a similar body shape - especially when viewed from a distance, or against a bright sky. Close up though, there are obvious differences.
Every year, at least a few waxwings arrive in Britain during the month of October. And every year, birders like myself wonder whether the winter is going to be a waxwing winter.
Every now and again - usually when the fruit harvest in Scandinavia is poor - waxwing numbers reaching Britain increase and large numbers of waxwings reach our shores looking for berries to gorge themselves on.
Numbers have been known to reach thousands in some years, and flocks of up to 100 or more can be seen anywhere in the country - particularly in Scotland and northern England.
This winter is turning out to be a waxwing year, as many have been seen already throughout the country with the majority so far in Scotland. Numbers are still building and will continue to do so throughout November.
As the birds in Scotland and northern England clear their favoured rowan berries from the trees they move on, heading southwards looking for more rowan berries and other sources of food - including whitebeam and cotoneaster berries, crab apples and pears.
This means over the next two months, flocks of waxwings will be moving across the country and will turn undoubtedly turn up in London.
If you know of somewhere where there are rowan trees heavily laden with berries, I would keep an on eye on them to see if a group of these wonderful birds has found them too.
Already a group of waxwings has been seen at the Wetland Centre and a few have been spotted flying over Sidcup and Blackheath. I expect many more to be seen before the year ends. Maybe you will be lucky enough to find them.
If you see any waxwings in London, let us know where you see them by sending your name and the street details (street name, town, borough and/or postcode) to firstname.lastname@example.org.