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Recent content by johnallcock

  1. J

    Prinia ? Precise ID appreciated

    Agreed, it's a Blue-winged Minla. They can often look a bit confusing from below, not like you might expect from field guides that show the upperparts (especially as you can't see the blue wings and tail from below). But the tail is unique (perfect square tips, mostly white with a black frame)...
  2. J

    Bunting? and Pipits ID, Guangxi, China

    Agree with Crested Bunting. I've found them fairly easy to see in some places in Guangxi, but they do seem to be localised to certain habitats. The pipits are going to be tricky I think. To add to the complications, the population of Richard's Pipits in South China ('sinensis') is more heavily...
  3. J

    Yellow Bittern/Cinnamon Bittern (Juvenile) ? Sarawak, Malaysian Borneo

    The black marks behind the iris (creating the yellow C at the front) are a feature of both Cinnamon and von Schrenck's Bittern, but not found in Yellow Bittern
  4. J

    Snipe ID preening shots (tail & underwing). Sarawak, Malaysian Borneo.

    The pins can be difficult to see if they're hidden under the other tail feathers or upper tail coverts. Even in the hand they aren't always obvious. I think that I can see pins on this bird, as highlighted on these screen shots. As well as the width of the tail feather, Swinhoe's also...
  5. J

    Great or Intermediate Egret? (Singapore)

    It's plausible that alba could turn up as a vagrant in Singapore, but I think it would be extremely rare. I think the South Asia listing in IOC refers to birds in India/Pakistan/Bangladesh (?). In Eastern Asia it seems to rarely get much further south than central China/southern Japan (eg only...
  6. J

    Starling, Shanghai

    I agree it's White-cheeked. Probably a female, which are paler below than males (brownish rather than blackish-grey) and have variable white on the head that can be quite extensive. Compare: White-cheeked Starling Macaulay Library ML388445571
  7. J

    Great or Intermediate Egret? (Singapore)

    I agree they're all Intermediate. The shaggy front to the foreneck (most visible here on 2c and 4d) is a feature I find useful that doesn't get mentioned as much as I think it deserves
  8. J

    Gadwall? - Guangxi, China

    This one looks like a Eurasian Teal to me - squatter, shorter neck, larger head and longer bill than on a Falcated. I think it's a male just starting to moult into breeding plumage
  9. J

    Gadwall? - Guangxi, China

    Agreed, it looks like a female Falcated. Nice record!
  10. J

    Warbler ID help please, Shanghai

    Agree with this analysis. We've been having a good year so far for Pallas's in Hong Kong - good numbers around (especially after a very poor winter last year). Unlike Yellow-browed, which has been having a very poor year here.
  11. J

    Thrush, Shanghai, November

    Ooh, interesting suggestion. Bill colour varies with age in males (adults have a yellow bill) but I've never heard of this with females and never noticed it myself. I'll have to investigate when I've got a bit of time. Could be a useful feature if they do. Females are actually pretty variable in...
  12. J

    Harrier, Shanghai

    Agreed. I suspect that Hen Harrier is also more likely than Pied at this time of year, with most Pied already being further south.
  13. J

    Thrush, Shanghai, November

    Agree with Japanese, but I'm not sure it's dark enough on the upperparts or breast for a male. I'd say it's a heavily marked female (not sure of the age)
  14. J

    Idea help, please. Sparrow like. Shanghai, November

    They look like Pallas's Reed buntings to me. The pale sandy upperparts, fairly long tail and head pattern fit. Japanese is similar but should have a dark ear covert patch. Reed bunting should be larger with a thicker bill.
  15. J

    ID help, terns and sand plovers, Phuket, Thailand, Nov 8

    I think it's an optical illusion caused by the birds standing more upright and alert. Structure and plumage looks like Lesser SP.