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Old Thursday 15th January 2004, 21:23   #1
Lol
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Interesting Coot

Poor photo - taken this morning locally in South Wales.
The bird was very grey - but the bill was white throughout.
Any thoughts would be appreciated.
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Old Thursday 15th January 2004, 21:26   #2
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The American Coot looks to be very grey in the body. Do you think it could be this?
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Old Thursday 15th January 2004, 21:32   #3
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Interesting,Lol,as yes,all our coots are all black,leastways all the ones i've seen around here are.
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Old Thursday 15th January 2004, 21:34   #4
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It looks to have the typical Eurasian Coot frontal shield I think though its difficult to tell for certain from the image.
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Old Thursday 15th January 2004, 21:34   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steve_nova
The American Coot looks to be very grey in the body. Do you think it could be this?
I have to confess that that was what briefly crossed my mind this morning - the narrow shield also looks good - but the bill is completely wrong - so I wrote it off as an aberant eurasian - but took a few snaps out of interest. The more I look at the snaps, the more interesting it gets :-)
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Old Thursday 15th January 2004, 21:35   #6
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Slight leucism again?
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Old Thursday 15th January 2004, 21:36   #7
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American> http://www.stetson.edu/~pmay/woodruff/coot.jpg

American> http://www.perimeterpoint.com/galleries/birds/coot.jpg

British> http://www.uksafari.com/jpeg/coot.jpg

British> http://user.chollian.net/~aves/photo-gallary/(01-05)european%20Coot3-1.jpg

Hmmm.....the American Coot and the European Coot both seem to vary in their greyness but the eyes of the American do seem redder as well as having a dark bar towards the front of the bill.
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Old Thursday 15th January 2004, 21:37   #8
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.......sorry, last link don't work!
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Old Thursday 15th January 2004, 21:37   #9
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Hmm. I'd like to see a shot with the head in profile. It appears that the feathering at the base of the bill may project onto the bill in a point, which would rule out American Coot. Not sure that the white shield isn't a touch too extensive for AM too. Must go and see what photos I can find.

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Old Thursday 15th January 2004, 21:38   #10
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Blimey, you all posted quickly! Yes, definitely a Common Coot.

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Old Thursday 15th January 2004, 21:41   #11
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European (three images) > http://user.chollian.net/~aves/photo...ean%20Coot.htm

........and very grey looking.
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Old Thursday 15th January 2004, 21:42   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bluetail
Hmm. I'd like to see a shot with the head in profile.
Jason
This is the only profile shot - suffers badly from shake 9poor light) - not sure if it helps ?
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Old Thursday 15th January 2004, 21:43   #13
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Possibly just regional variation within the species regarding it's greyness then?
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Old Thursday 15th January 2004, 21:45   #14
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Maybe Coot go grey before they go bald!
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Old Thursday 15th January 2004, 21:50   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve G
Maybe Coot go grey before they go bald!
... yes - I know exactly how they must feel :-)

Thanks for your input everyone - much appreciated
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Old Thursday 15th January 2004, 21:51   #16
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Tee hee
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Old Thursday 15th January 2004, 21:54   #17
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I'm guilty of not looking too closely at Coots (I think the jury might acquit me there), but I think this is probably a first-winter bird. First winters are paler than adults (and have a slight brownish cast to the plumage which I think I detect here) and a much smaller frontal shield than adults.

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Old Thursday 15th January 2004, 21:59   #18
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Don't american coot have a white bum like a moorhen!
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Old Thursday 15th January 2004, 21:59   #19
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Yup, though a bit more restricted if I recall correctly.

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Old Thursday 15th January 2004, 22:02   #20
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In the second American link (post #7) I think you can just make out the white bum!
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Old Thursday 15th January 2004, 22:08   #21
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Would the lack of a large bald patch mean it is a 1st winter bird (no bird books at work to confirm this).

Or at least one that has not bred Kids are helping my baldness at any rate!!
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Old Thursday 15th January 2004, 22:14   #22
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Well adult Coots' shields are variable in size and can't apparently be used for aging (I've just looked it up!), but I think it's safe to say that a shield as restricted as the one in the pic would indicate a first winter.

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Old Thursday 15th January 2004, 22:40   #23
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Dunno if the greyness means anything or not, but I can't recollect ever having seen a coot with such a pink bill - or is that just the bad light again?

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Old Thursday 15th January 2004, 22:49   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Frankis
.. a coot with such a pink bill ....
Michael
You at the African Hemp again?
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Old Friday 16th January 2004, 05:11   #25
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The pink caste to the bill that Michael refers to is often visible in certain light conditions and attitudes - (similar to the flat light of this picture and foreshortened attitude of the bird).
I see nothing wrong with the grey-ish appearance of the body colour, again flat light often reveals subtle nuances that aren't visible in more contrasting conditions. The size of the shield isn't particluarly relevant for aging and sexing and is quite a variable feature.
This is just a 'normal' Eurasian Coot Fulica Atra.

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