M&S shoppers get in a flap after spotting 15 mistakes in single 'British birds' jigsaw puzzle

Lauren Clark
M&S has apologised for up to 15 mistakes found by shoppers in a 500-piece bird jigsaw puzzle [Image: M&S]
M&S has apologised for up to 15 mistakes found by shoppers in a 500-piece jigsaw [Image: M&S]

We’re barely into Christmas shopping season, and Marks & Spencer have already been praised for their £19.50 jewellery advent calendar and “perfect turkey” offering.

However, the brand haven’t been third time lucky with what was intended to be their perfect gift for birdwatchers.

M&S customers have spotted 15 mistakes in a 500-piece jigsaw puzzle decorated with pictures of Britain’s best-loved birds, according to The Sunday Times.

The product, made from sustainably-sourced card and originally priced at £8, features several species that are not actually found in the UK, and some of the illustrations are incorrectly labelled.

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For example, the hummingbird, blue jay, piping plover, California quail and an Asian white-breasted waterhen are not found in Britain.

While the rose-breasted grosbeak, hoopoe and glossy ibis have occasionally been spotted in the UK, they could “scarcely” be considered British an ornithologist told the paper.

The images of the lesser spotted and great spotted woodpeckers both actually depict the white-backed woodpecker - which is found in central Europe.

Roger Riddington, editor of British Birds magazine, told them: “It’s a bit of a shambles.

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“There are a lot of birds in there that you could in no way claim are British. It’s a shame, and an opportunity missed.

“It would have been a great present to inspire potential young ornithologists, but as it is they’ll probably end up disappointed when they go out for that Boxing Day walk and fail to find a hummingbird.”

Responding to criticism on social media, M&S said: “This has already been reported to our suppliers and is being reviewed.”

The product is now listed as ‘out of stock’ on their website.

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One customer left a five-star review, writing: “This M&S jigsaw is a puzzle . . . However, it is fun spotting the mistakes.”

In a statement, the brand added: “We apologise for referring to our jigsaw as the ideal gift for birdwatchers when there are clearly some errors.

“We will ensure we seek expert advice for next year’s edition.”

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