With the increasing availability of information and with increasing personal confidence, many observers are recording birds to subspecies level. As the return wader migration gets into full swing, and with passerines soon to follow, it is timely to remind observers of the associated pitfalls. The mix of age and moult plumages of the birds that we experience in the autumn does not render them so readily to precise subspecific identification as in the spring (and even spring plumages have their problems!). Records claiming ID to subspecies level are subject to scrutiny by the Recorder and the Berkshire Records Committee. Records should be accompanied by supporting evidence. Short notes may suffice but a description and/or good quality photographs are preferred.