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Moulting magpie or hybrid with Hooded Crow?

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Old Tuesday 1st September 2015, 16:03   #1
Zheljko
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Moulting magpie or hybrid with Hooded Crow?


I found this strange bird today, in company of several crows and one normal magpie. As you can see it is huge and unusually colored. The head seems to be moulting.
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Old Tuesday 1st September 2015, 16:13   #2
aeshna5
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I just see a Magpie + 2 Hooded Crows?
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Old Tuesday 1st September 2015, 16:15   #3
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I,d say a juvenile magpie, I hear and see our regular pair of magpies in our neibours trees which have juveniles They have most of The Features of the adults but some features are lacking as in the plumage of the birds head in The photo which has not filled out Yet like a adult magpie.
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Old Tuesday 1st September 2015, 17:52   #4
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IMHO its a Magpie (Pica pica), just with a "light" head :-) Probably a juvenile. I see many juveniles with such appearances here in Cyprus this time of year.
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Old Tuesday 1st September 2015, 18:04   #5
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The head feathering doesn't seem to be in place yet, so its either juvenile or moulting.
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Old Tuesday 1st September 2015, 18:11   #6
chris butterworth
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Common Magpie. By the length of the tail it's an adult and the "strange" head is possibly down to feather loss due to a mite ( ? ) infestation.
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Old Tuesday 1st September 2015, 18:54   #7
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Yes Magpie in moult, quite normal at this time of year.

Hybrids between corvidae are extremely rare, and have, as far as I know, never occurred between different taxa (eg Pica and Corvus).

Claims of hybrids between Pica pica and Corvus corone/cornix have invariably proved to be Hooded or Carrion Crows with whitish remiges/retrices (due to leucism or lack of nutrition during feather growth)

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Old Tuesday 1st September 2015, 22:11   #8
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Yes, just a raggedy magpie... from the post preview (esp. the word "huge") I was wondering about an escaped one of the African species of "pied" crows/ravens!

I heard a claim of a Magpie/Jackdaw hybrid once, but there were no pictures of it (I suspect it was just a leucistic Jackdaw), or indeed any definite corvid hybrid other than Carrion x Hooded (which some people consider to be only subspecies rather than full species anyway). Also I think Magpies and Crows aren't particularly close together in the corvid family tree (oddly, Jays are closer to crows/ravens/jackdaws IIRC)...
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Old Wednesday 2nd September 2015, 12:54   #9
Zheljko
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Thank you all! The extent of white around "armpits" seemed rather excessive (as if it had black "hairs" on white background). The other magpie, which was further away, seemed to have these areas mostly black (I guess it is an older adult). I wish I could get them both in the photo, but this one actually approached me somewhat and they could not be in the same frame (they were all inside a city block on a lawn).
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