Puffin loses out to robin in national bird vote

The puffin was unable to secure the title of Britain's first national bird.
The puffin was unable to secure the title of Britain's first national bird.

It may be synonymous with Northumberland, but the puffin has lost the battle to become Britain’s first national bird - with the robin flying in to take top spot.

A shortlist of 10 feathered friends were in the running to take the title after campaigner and ornithologist David Lindo launched a poll to find which one best epitomised Britain.

The robin won the vote to be crowned Britain's first national bird. Picture by Gary Brunskill.

The robin won the vote to be crowned Britain's first national bird. Picture by Gary Brunskill.

The robin secured 34 per cent of the votes to ensure victory and Mr Lindo now plans to ask the Government to officially recognise the red-breasted creature as the national bird.

The puffin, however, did not fare as well, finishing in 10th place. The cute birds, with their multicoloured beaks, make an annual pilgrimage to Coquet Island and the Farnes to breed, before heading off to sea for the winter. Amble has held a puffin festival for the last three years.

The robin was initially selected – along with nine other birds – from a list of 60 in a preliminary vote. A ballot for the final 10 then opened to the British public in March. More than 200,000 people voted and polling closed on the day of the general election, May 7.

The barn owl finished second, while the blackbird was third. The other contenders were the wren, red kite and kingfisher, who finished fourth, fifth and sixth respectively. The mute swan was seventh, blue tit was eighth and the hen harrier was ninth.