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Greater Yellowlegs / Lesser Yellowlegs

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Old Wednesday 25th January 2006, 00:22   #1
Dave S
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Greater Yellowlegs / Lesser Yellowlegs

I've never been able to distinguish the two. I think the problem has been that I've seen mostly greater yellowlegs and very few if any lessers. Today I think I got a picture of a lesser with a greater (the greater isn't in the best focus, but he's about 30% bigger than the lesser). Am I correct on this one?
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Old Wednesday 25th January 2006, 01:02   #2
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I would agree with your instinct that you have a greater and lesser. A field mark I use is the bill length and slight upcurve of the greater compared to the lesser. Of course you do have to get a good look at them. Nice photo though!
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Old Wednesday 25th January 2006, 01:05   #3

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This nice photo highlights another field mark: the essentially bi-colored bill of the Greater Yellowlegs. The basal third of its length is gray while the rest of the bill is blackish.
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Old Wednesday 25th January 2006, 01:58   #4
Alejandro Tabini

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Hi Dave,

I usually used the bill lenght to distinguish between this two. If the bill is larger than the head length so it is a Greater and if the bill lenght is almost the same as the head length so it is a Lesser. The only thing as AKestrel3 mention is that you need to get a really good view of the bird by the side to get the real perspective of the bill/head leght.

If this picture as you mention the on on the front is a lesser and the one on the back is a greater.

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Old Wednesday 25th January 2006, 07:46   #5
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very nice photo for comparative purposes ... agree with above comments
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