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Old Tuesday 2nd May 2017, 19:13   #1
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Lark sp. [Switzerland]

Hello all,

I come here for your opinion on this lark photographed by a friend in Southern Switzerland last weekend, and which is causing much debate. There is only this single picture, and some claim that this is a Calandra Lark, which would be a major rarity in the country. IMO, the long tail, long primary projection and jizz all point toward a Skylark. The bill seems big at the first glance, but a second look reveals it is actually quite thin. Just the black spot on the shoulder is troubling me.

Best thanks,

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Old Tuesday 2nd May 2017, 19:34   #2
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Skylark for me

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Old Tuesday 2nd May 2017, 22:45   #3
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Originally Posted by andyadcock View Post
Skylark for me

... and for me too. Certainly not Calandra.
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Old Wednesday 13th September 2017, 11:05   #4
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Hello all,

sorry to dig out this thread, but the record is currently under review by the homologation committee here in Switzerland, and there is still much discussion on this bird, that might not be a straightforward identification after all. One of the main anti-skylark (and pro-calandra) argument is the look of the tertiaries (with the inner dark part contrasting with outer light part). I still don't get the gut feeling of a calandra, but what about a greater short-toed lark?

Would be really interested to hear what you think, since it would be good to find a consensus here before I have to argue for a skylark in front of the committee.


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Old Wednesday 13th September 2017, 13:41   #5
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Hi Arnaud,

Greater Short-toed Lark can be excluded at once due to its almost non-existing primary projection.

As you mention, the latter field mark can also be used to eliminate Calandra Lark, because that species has a very long primary projection.

Skylark, however, with its - to quote the Collin's guide - "moderate" primary projection matches perfectly. A further clinching character is the tail projection, which is considerably longer in Skylark than in Calandra Lark, so you should be able to put this claim to rest by using your initial arguments.


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