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Old Monday 7th May 2012, 20:43   #10476
upstarts1979
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Woodchat View Post
See attached photo of today's flava wagtail. Note: this has been cropped but not adjusted in any other way.

The throat is yellow - good for Blue-headed Wagtail. However, I'm a bit concerned about the head - perhaps a shade too pale? - suggesting intergrade 'Channel Wagtail' possibly? I'd welcome anyones opinions on this bird.

Cheers.
The sub ocular patch is within the range for Blue Headed, as is the size and shape of the supercillium, the throat looks yellow and the head does look ashy blue, so I think Blue headed ...whatever the outcome its a yellow wagtail, but a great looking bird. The plight of our yellow wagtails is perilous and hybridization might be the saviour of this species in the UK.
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Old Monday 7th May 2012, 21:07   #10477
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Quote:
Originally Posted by upstarts1979 View Post
The sub ocular patch is within the range for Blue Headed, as is the size and shape of the supercillium, the throat looks yellow and the head does look ashy blue, so I think Blue headed ...whatever the outcome its a yellow wagtail, but a great looking bird. The plight of our yellow wagtails is perilous and hybridization might be the saviour of this species in the UK.
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There have been 14 records of Blue-headed Wagtail at Upton Warren, the last being in 2001. All have fallen in the period 26th April to 13th May.
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Old Monday 7th May 2012, 21:15   #10478
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Dave, how many flava wagtails was the interesting bird with?

Comments so far on the ID forum appear to f(l)ava a Channel Wagtail.
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Old Monday 7th May 2012, 21:36   #10479
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Just to throw my hat in the ring I feel that it is tending towards a 'channel wag'...but with so many different variants of hybridisation on the Blue-headed's range its hard to be 100%

Anyway just to add to the debate here is a photo of the channel wag that I had at Shenstone last Spring...
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Old Monday 7th May 2012, 21:38   #10480
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Dave, how many flava wagtails was the interesting bird with?
Comments so far on the ID forum appear to f(l)ava a Channel Wagtail.
1 bright male Yellow Wag, one less bright male and one female - so 3 plus the blue-headed type.
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Old Monday 7th May 2012, 21:54   #10481
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the kestrel in one pic has a mouse or some such, as for all dayer with pics had 54 today in about six hours, very enjoyable half day. ps cheers dave ref coney meadow.
Good images especially the Little Gull.

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Old Monday 7th May 2012, 22:01   #10482
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A few more shots of the BH / "Channel" Wag from different angles - not good quality as it was rainy and distant - again not enhanced in any way.
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Old Monday 7th May 2012, 22:03   #10483
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http://www.birdforum.net/showthread.php?t=229587

Consensus so far is Channel Wagtail.
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Old Tuesday 8th May 2012, 07:30   #10484
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1st w, Little Gull still and Cuckoo flew over East Hide and settled on dead tree by causeway this morning. No Yellow Wagtails - yet.

Last edited by Gertatron : Tuesday 8th May 2012 at 07:53.
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Old Tuesday 8th May 2012, 19:30   #10485
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Tuesday 8th May

MOORS POOL
Little Gull (first summer). 6 Common Tern, 27 Tufted Duck (19 males, 8 females), 27 Coot, 6 GC Grebe, 2 Little Grebe, 2 Mute Swan, 2 Greylag Geese, 2 Cormorant, 4 Moorhen, 2 Jay, Sparrowhawk, Kestrel (been very visible in recent days), 4 Oystercatcher

SAILING POOL
4 GC Grebe, 2 Coot

FLASHES
10 Avocet, 6 LRP, 4 Lapwing, 2 Shelduck, 2 Gadwall, 2 Shoveler, 10 Coot, 4 Moorhen, 1 Grey Heron, 3 LBB Gull, Rook over, 2 Yellow Wagtail over, Greylag Goose over, Common Gull (seems to have an infection in/around its right eye).

Many Buzzards in the air today with the warmer temperatures and sunshine.
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Old Tuesday 8th May 2012, 20:09   #10486
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MOORS POOL
Little Gull (first summer). 6 Common Tern, 27 Tufted Duck (19 males, 8 females), 27 Coot, 6 GC Grebe, 2 Little Grebe, 2 Mute Swan, 2 Greylag Geese, 2 Cormorant, 4 Moorhen, 2 Jay, Sparrowhawk, Kestrel (been very visible in recent days), 4 Oystercatcher

SAILING POOL
4 GC Grebe, 2 Coot

FLASHES
10 Avocet, 6 LRP, 4 Lapwing, 2 Shelduck, 2 Gadwall, 2 Shoveler, 10 Coot, 4 Moorhen, 1 Grey Heron, 3 LBB Gull, Rook over, 2 Yellow Wagtail over, Greylag Goose over, Common Gull (seems to have an infection in/around its right eye).

Many Buzzards in the air today with the warmer temperatures and sunshine.
Pic of this early mornings Cuckoo at the Moors and a Swift. Strangely the Cuckoo wasn't calling at all. This evening saw about 200 Sand Martins over the Moors and only a few Swallows and Swift.
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Old Tuesday 8th May 2012, 20:30   #10487
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Add to Phil's sighting:
Flashesommon Tern 2, Herring gull, Rook, mistle thrush

Hen Pool:The cut reed channels in front of the hide, seem to have served two purposes. Not only do they provide good viewing, but they have also created physical divisions between reed warbler territories. Although it is early day's yet, there are definitely more singing birds than last year.
Also from the hide I saw, Coot plus 2 half grown chicks, Moorhen plus 4 very small chicks. Reed warbler 7 singing plus females in tow. Sedge warbler, chiffchaff, blackcap 2 singing, reed bunting pr.

Moors : Whitethroat, garden warbler

Sailing pool lesser whitethroat
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Old Tuesday 8th May 2012, 21:10   #10488
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A few more shots of the BH / "Channel" Wag from different angles - not good quality as it was rainy and distant - again not enhanced in any way.
I'd change my mind on seeing those photos and go with Blue-headed, variation amongst these birds is always going to be huge so assigning them to a specific sub-species is always going to be tricky but given the other features that this bird shows, if I had to put it into a box it would be flava just a bit on the pale side head colour wise.

Also Jason's bird looks pretty dark headed and flava like...
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Old Tuesday 8th May 2012, 22:03   #10489
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I'd change my mind on seeing those photos and go with Blue-headed, variation amongst these birds is always going to be huge so assigning them to a specific sub-species is always going to be tricky but given the other features that this bird shows, if I had to put it into a box it would be flava just a bit on the pale side head colour wise.

........
Hi Tim,

I'm still undecided on this bird. like you say the features are good for flava but the apparent paleness of the head means it's always likely to be controversial. I remember seeing similar-looking birds in Lesvos (amongst a full spectrum of different wagtail races) which, at the time, I assigned to flava, assuming there to be this level of variation amongst the nominate form. I guess it is possible that 'channel' intergrades could migrate through the eastern mediterranean, however.

A difficult one to be 100% sure about. Thanks (to everyone) for the feedback.
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Old Tuesday 8th May 2012, 22:16   #10490
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Add to Phil's sighting:
Flashesommon Tern 2, Herring gull, Rook, mistle thrush

Hen Pool:The cut reed channels in front of the hide, seem to have served two purposes. Not only do they provide good viewing, but they have also created physical divisions between reed warbler territories. Although it is early day's yet, there are definitely more singing birds than last year.
Also from the hide I saw, Coot plus 2 half grown chicks, Moorhen plus 4 very small chicks. Reed warbler 7 singing plus females in tow. Sedge warbler, chiffchaff, blackcap 2 singing, reed bunting pr.

Moors : Whitethroat, garden warbler

Sailing pool lesser whitethroat
Also to add: Hobby at the Moors
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Old Tuesday 8th May 2012, 22:27   #10491
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Pic of this early mornings Cuckoo at the Moors and a Swift. Strangely the Cuckoo wasn't calling at all. This evening saw about 200 Sand Martins over the Moors and only a few Swallows and Swift.
Contrary to what you said Gert, I don't see much wrong with the Cuckoo shot. I'd be happy to have shot that (photographically speaking of course ) & the swift's pretty smart too.

Rob
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Old Tuesday 8th May 2012, 22:33   #10492
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I have only just read this.

Sadly I don't go to UW as often as I would like now I have moved away from Birmingham but I used to go there most weekends and also, when light enough, most weekday nights and fondly remember having many converstaions with Arthur.

A lovely man. He will most definitely be missed.

R.I.P Arthur

John

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I have just received a phone call from Terry H, who informed me of the sad news that Arthur had passed away today. Having known Arthur for well over 30 years, he will always be known as Mr Upton Warren to me and many others from the 'old days'.
RIP Arthur.
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Old Wednesday 9th May 2012, 07:48   #10493
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I am no expert with regard to the Yellow Wag 'complex' - there are plenty of people who are and who have seen endless groups of migrant birds in places like Eilat etc - I have seen the usuals that occur on passage here such as Grey/Blue/Ashy headed types as well as 'resident' birds also 'feldegg' and more recently 'iberiae' types and always exercise caution due to the possiblity of 'hybrids'. I do'nt think anybody really knows that much about hybridisation in the field and i would be more inclined to accept that there will be variation in the plumage and colour tone within a population rather than trying to place every abberant individual. I have just seen a party of over 50 'iberiae' YWags (not here) and there were half a dozen individuals that were paler on the heads but apart from that the other plumage features matched the others. Does this make them 'hybrids'? There has to be a degree of variation and not hybridisation i would have thought. The same could be said for the possible Atlas Flicker altho the feather sent off for DNA will or should reveal all but i ca'nt help thinking that it will take a bit of the magic out of the record to have it clinched (or not) by men in White coats!

My recent trip involved a couple of days in the Middle Atlas and i appeared to be a bit early for Atlas as all i saw were migrant Pieds altho there were calling birds i could'nt nail altho i have seen Iberian Pied in Portugal.

It all leaves me a bit confused - i am still happy to put in my field notes 'a bird showing the characteristics of...........'

Just my thoughts -

Laurie -
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Old Wednesday 9th May 2012, 18:50   #10494
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Contrary to what you said Gert, I don't see much wrong with the Cuckoo shot. I'd be happy to have shot that (photographically speaking of course ) & the swift's pretty smart too.

Rob
Thanks Rob. I'm loving the 'second birdwatch' when I get home and look at the photos I've taken. Certainly adds another dimension to birding. Thanks for your advice the other evening
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Old Wednesday 9th May 2012, 19:53   #10495
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Just a quick reminder that Arthur Jacobs' funeral will be held at Redditch Crematorium this Friday at 1:15pm.
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Old Wednesday 9th May 2012, 22:25   #10496
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No news of anything today??
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Old Thursday 10th May 2012, 10:24   #10497
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No news of anything today??
Hi Phil,

The Little Gull was still on the Moors Pool yesterday per MJI

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Old Thursday 10th May 2012, 12:41   #10498
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Thanks Brian - that was its 7th day.
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Old Thursday 10th May 2012, 13:17   #10499
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Thanks Brian - that was its 7th day.
You can make it 8 now

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Old Thursday 10th May 2012, 13:48   #10500
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Gavo had a cuckoo at the Moors this morning
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