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South African birds ID. please.

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Old Sunday 9th March 2008, 10:50   #1
Mary R
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South African birds ID. please.

I have recently returned from a holiday in South Africa and these birds were seen along the Garden Route.

I think the 1st one could be a Drongo?
2nd ?
3rd pos. Paradise Flycatcher?
(sorry aboy the poor quality, but i didn't have time to focus before it flew off)

Thank you.
......................

Mary
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Old Sunday 9th March 2008, 13:01   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mary R View Post
I have recently returned from a holiday in South Africa and these birds were seen along the Garden Route.

I think the 1st one could be a Drongo?
2nd ?
3rd pos. Paradise Flycatcher?
(sorry aboy the poor quality, but i didn't have time to focus before it flew off)

Thank you.
......................

Mary
The first is a Fork-tailed Drongo, the last a female African Paradise Flycatcher. The second appears to be a pipit. I would guess the candidates are Long-billed, Richards and Plain-backed. I've always been a bit clueless with this group, so hopefully someone more knowledgeable will help you there.
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Old Sunday 9th March 2008, 13:59   #3
Mary R
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Thanks for that Chowchilla.

.................

Mary
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Old Sunday 9th March 2008, 15:49   #4
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Where was the pipit photo taken? I'd guess the pipit is Plain-backed or maybe Buffy. I understand that two new species of pipits were recently described from an urban hocky field in Kimberly.
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Old Sunday 9th March 2008, 17:55   #5
Dave Kennedy
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Where was the pipit photo taken? I'd guess the pipit is Plain-backed or maybe Buffy. I understand that two new species of pipits were recently described from an urban hocky field in Kimberly.
The Garden route runs along the south coast of South Africa, roughly from Mossel Bay to Tsitsikamma Coastal National Park, which is some way east of Plettenberg Bay. Some people refer to the whole stretch from Cape Town to Port Elizabeth as the Garden Route, but that is not strictly correct.

The pipits from Kimberley may be the ones described below:

(URL: http://agric.ncape.gov.za/Ornitholog...iledpipits.htm )

Where and when to see Kimberley and Long-tailed Pipits in the greater Kimberley area?

Kimberley Pipit
Although probably present all year round, Kimberley Pipit Anthus pseudosimilis is most easily found when singing during October-November, when its two-note call, similar to that of Long-billed Pipit, easily leads one to locate birds calling from termite mounds or, sometimes, in flight. Its plumage is bolder than similar species, with faintly rufous ear-coverts and relatively distinct facial markings, and it has an upright, long-legged stance. It can be common in the south-eastern, Kalahari sandveld portion of De Beers’ Benfontein Game Farm, and occurs alongside Grassveld Pipit in open gravelly areas around Benfontein's pan, such as in the vicinity of Wildebeestkuil waterhole. Very little is known about this species and it probably has a wider distribution and may, therefore, be present in similar habitats at other localities in the Kimberley area.

Liversidge, R. & Voelker, G. 2002. The Kimberley Pipit: a new African species. Bull. B.O.C. 122(2): 93-109.

Long-tailed Pipit
The Long-tailed Pipit Anthus longicaudatus was recently described from specimens collected at Keeley Park, Kimberley. The distribution and movements of this species are poorly known, although it seems to be a non-breeding winter visitor (May to early-September) to the Kimberley region. Pipit identification is notoriously subjective and separating the Long-tailed from the similar Plain-backed and Buffy Pipits is less than clear. The Long-tailed Pipit is a large, heavily built pipit with a distinct eyebrow and an unstreaked buffy back, crown and mantle (unlike Grassveld, Long-billed and Kimberley Pipit). Unlike Buffy Pipit it has a distinctly yellow base to its lower mandible, like Plain-backed Pipit. Other features that may separate it from Buffy and Plain-backed Pipitare its slightly longer tail and darker colour, more horizontal jizz when feeding, and even higher rate of tail-wagging, involving the entire lower body. Keeley Park (also called Beaconsfield Memorial Park), just off Central Road, in Beaconsfield, Kimberley, is probably the best place to see these pipits. Even during the winter months, they are however frequently absent from the Park.

Liversidge, R. 1996. A new species of pipit in southern Africa. Bull. B.O.C. 116(4): 211-215.

Claire Spottiswoode & Mark D. Anderson


Kimberley, however is far from the Garden route so these pipits could be excluded. Pipits are hard enough when seen perfectly, so it is difficult to ID this one precisely. The Drongo and female Paradise Flycatcher are dead right.

Best wishes,
Dave Kennedy
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Old Monday 10th March 2008, 16:12   #6
Mary R
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Sorry, I've just noticed that i took this photo while i was still in Cape Town and was taken somewhere near West Coast N.P.

Could it be an African Pipit?

...............

Mary
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Old Wednesday 12th March 2008, 10:23   #7
Trevor Hardaker
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Difficult to be absolutely sure on the pipit from this photo because the back detail is in shadow, but I would think there is a reasonably good chance that this is an African Pipit. I might be fooling myself, but I think I can make out some white in the outer rectrices (or maybe age is catching up with me and affecting my eyesight...) and this would also point towards African Pipit.

Kind Regards
Trevor
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Old Wednesday 12th March 2008, 13:48   #8
David Swanepoel
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When in doubt...it's an African Pipit (often sad but true when looking out for something different)
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