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A shot in the dark...North East London

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Old Tuesday 15th October 2019, 17:47   #1
KenM
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A shot in the dark...North East London

Casually scanning my back/neighbour's hedge Sunday(13th) afternoon for passing Chiffies and Crests, when I very briefly (several seconds) noted a warbler sp which I couldn't compute! Perhaps 20m+distant! It was side on and appeared incredibly pale with an apparent wing bar! Just as I grabbed the camera it flew down into the hedge ne'er to be seen again rest of day.

Monday (14th) 8am I was on station again logging the few migrants that had passed through (Goldcrest and Chiffy), when to my surprise the same pallid bird appeared in the same corner of my neighbour's garden, camera in position (around neck) I fired off two shutter-bursts c20 shots. Unfortunately it was raining and very dark (8.37am) to give you an idea on automatic....F4 at 1/60th ISO 1600.

Needless to say the few shots that were partly in focus certainly got me thinking! Where seen-the bill tip was partially obscured by leafage or straight on fore-shortened, the wings short, under-parts white showing a faint buff pink wash to lower flanks and shoulder, the ''wing bar'' was in effect the greater covert bar showing the moult line. The legs were pale and there appears to be a darker contrasting edge above the super.

What might opinions be?

Cheers
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Old Tuesday 15th October 2019, 22:56   #2
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It's a Chiffchaff. Without call suggesting Sibe it doesn't have legs for anything else IMO.
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Old Tuesday 15th October 2019, 23:14   #3
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Originally Posted by Hotspur View Post
It's a Chiffchaff. Without call suggesting Sibe it doesn't have legs for anything else IMO.
Not like any Chiffy that I’ve ever seen, needless to say I’ve seen a few, movement was slower and more deliberate with no tail flicking and no vestige of yellow in the cosmetics whatsoever, also the legs were pale not dark as would befit tristis?
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Old Tuesday 15th October 2019, 23:17   #4
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Not like any Chiffy that I’ve ever seen, needless to say I’ve seen a few, movement was slower and more deliberate with no tail flicking and no vestige of yellow in the cosmetics whatsoever, also the legs were pale not dark as would befit tristis?
So what do you think it is Ken?
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Old Tuesday 15th October 2019, 23:27   #5
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Looks like a normal western Chiffy to my eyes.
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Old Tuesday 15th October 2019, 23:29   #6
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So what do you think it is Ken?
I would have preferred better images, however the only at first “seemingly” unlikely candidate “might” be Booted Warbler, paradoxically with two turning up at the same time in Kent and Cornwall?

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Old Tuesday 15th October 2019, 23:45   #7
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Looks like a normal western Chiffy to my eyes.
Agreed. Certainly not a booted warbler.
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Old Wednesday 16th October 2019, 09:02   #8
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It’s a chiffchaff
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Old Wednesday 16th October 2019, 09:29   #9
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A shot on the dark, in London? Makes a change from stabbings - post now awaiting removal.....

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Old Wednesday 16th October 2019, 10:29   #10
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I can certainly understand the Chiff Chaff call!, to an extent I'm playing devil's advocate with these ''primitive'' images, however some background to this thread.

For many years I've kept a daily log of avian activity on my patch and never more ardently so than during the Autumn period. Since Aug 30th I've logged c60 Chiff Chaff sightings (today included) and this supplied image is ''par for the course'', during this period two ''brown'' types have also been recorded, the original image is about as comparable as chalk is to cheese....certainly not ''typical'' for my area hence the post in 36 years!
Unfortunately the images are extremely poor, with the best image being foreshortened and ''Chiffy looking''...however this ''pallid'' bird was most unusual.

PS a few years back now, but I've had Booted Warbler down to 8'.
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Old Wednesday 16th October 2019, 13:43   #11
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Originally Posted by KenM View Post
Not like any Chiffy that I’ve ever seen, needless to say I’ve seen a few, movement was slower and more deliberate with no tail flicking and no vestige of yellow in the cosmetics whatsoever, also the legs were pale not dark as would befit tristis?
Thats my point. It looks like a standard Chiffchaff and unless call was suggestive of Sibe then it isnt that as it doesnt look like one. It isnt a Booted Warbler.
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Old Wednesday 16th October 2019, 14:02   #12
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Thats my point. It looks like a standard Chiffchaff and unless call was suggestive of Sibe then it isnt that as it doesnt look like one. It isnt a Booted Warbler.
I asked for comments which have been received.

I’ve acknowledged the comparison to Chiff Chaff.

I’ve explained why I thought it looked unusual.

I seem to recall your response to a third party regarding a trip to see the Nighthawk.

Hope I’m forgiven, but it appears that the thrust of your communication skills might require some modification?
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Old Thursday 17th October 2019, 21:08   #13
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A very interesting bird, so thank you for sharing, Ken!

As you have said, the three points makes this a very unusual chiffchaff:

this chiffchaff is quite pale, it appears COLORLESS to my eyes.
the legs are really pale (when the second picture gives the right colour). I cant remember a chiffchaff with such a pale colour, but I have seen similar legs on obvious ILL/weakened birds before.
Together with the behaviour, you mentioned ("movement was slower and more deliberate with no tail flicking") I get the feeling of an weakened bird, suffering from some kind of "disease". I am no expert in these, its just my feeling.
I am not sure that this is the right answer for this unusual Chiffchaff, but this has come to my mind.
Anyway, a good contribution for the ID of tristris-Issue. So thanks again for sharing!

For comperison, I attach some other Chiffchaffs (nearly) without yellow and green hues. I hope to illustrate the word colorless with these.

Schwetzinger Wiesen/SW-Germany 30.12.2013
Schwetzinger Wiesen/SW-Germany 11.01.2013
Angermünde/NE-Germany 15.05.2015
Schwetzinger Wiesen/SW-Germany 25.10.2015
Schwetzinger Wiesen/SW-Germany 10.10.2010

Alexander Stöhr
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Last edited by Alexander Stöhr : Thursday 17th October 2019 at 21:47.
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Old Friday 18th October 2019, 11:33   #14
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Originally Posted by Alexander Stöhr View Post
A very interesting bird, so thank you for sharing, Ken!

As you have said, the three points makes this a very unusual chiffchaff:

this chiffchaff is quite pale, it appears COLORLESS to my eyes.
the legs are really pale (when the second picture gives the right colour). I cant remember a chiffchaff with such a pale colour, but I have seen similar legs on obvious ILL/weakened birds before.
Together with the behaviour, you mentioned ("movement was slower and more deliberate with no tail flicking") I get the feeling of an weakened bird, suffering from some kind of "disease". I am no expert in these, its just my feeling.
I am not sure that this is the right answer for this unusual Chiffchaff, but this has come to my mind.
Anyway, a good contribution for the ID of tristris-Issue. So thanks again for sharing!

For comperison, I attach some other Chiffchaffs (nearly) without yellow and green hues. I hope to illustrate the word colorless with these.

Schwetzinger Wiesen/SW-Germany 30.12.2013
Schwetzinger Wiesen/SW-Germany 11.01.2013
Angermünde/NE-Germany 15.05.2015
Schwetzinger Wiesen/SW-Germany 25.10.2015
Schwetzinger Wiesen/SW-Germany 10.10.2010

Alexander Stöhr
Thanks Alexander! I've always found it a fascinating Taxa with so many variables across it's range, you've an interesting range of images and your comment regarding possible illness for the subject bird wasn't even on my radar and may well be a distinct possibility.

Here's another (bad image of the subject bird) plus a few late September-Oct. odd brown images which I've collected over the years.

Cheers
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Old Friday 18th October 2019, 12:09   #15
Larry Sweetland
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I've always found it a fascinating Taxa

Cheers
You're forever doing my head in with this Ken! If you're going to use fancy terminology please try and get it right. Taxa is plural. Taxon is singular. You wouldn't say "It's a big potatoes", or maybe you would?
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Old Friday 18th October 2019, 13:55   #16
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You're forever doing my head in with this Ken! If you're going to use fancy terminology please try and get it right. Taxa is plural. Taxon is singular. You wouldn't say "It's a big potatoes", or maybe you would?
I was of course referring to all the other Chiff Chaffs....races/sps/tristis the entire group Larry...I thought that would have been blindingly obvious to most...?
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Old Friday 18th October 2019, 16:09   #17
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I was of course referring to all the other Chiff Chaffs....races/sps/tristis the entire group Larry...I thought that would have been blindingly obvious to most...?
Why do you always put Chiff Chaff when it is blindingly obvious to most that it is Chiffchaff?.....
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Old Friday 18th October 2019, 16:33   #18
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Why do you always put Chiff Chaff when it is blindingly obvious to most that it is Chiffchaff?.....
.......So I can “wind” the pedantics up like you.
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Old Friday 18th October 2019, 16:43   #19
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I was of course referring to all the other Chiff Chaffs....races/sps/tristis the entire group Larry...I thought that would have been blindingly obvious to most...?
I know you were, but it still doesn't make sense!
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Old Friday 18th October 2019, 17:08   #20
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I know you were, but it still doesn't make sense!
Are you not contradicting yourself by saying “knowing what I meant”...then saying “it doesn’t make sense?”

Larry if we’re going to focus on the pedanticity of this thread rather than the “matter” then can we use the correct vernacular regarding “ doing my head in”, If you really want gallery/street cred then you might get more mileage from “doin me ‘ed in” it’s got a better ring to it...bit like “Chiff Chaff” the dysillabic call being preferable to Chiffchaff...
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Old Friday 18th October 2019, 18:35   #21
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Are you not contradicting yourself by saying “knowing what I meant”...then saying “it doesn’t make sense?”

Larry if we’re going to focus on the pedanticity of this thread rather than the “matter” then can we use the correct vernacular regarding “ doing my head in”, If you really want gallery/street cred then you might get more mileage from “doin me ‘ed in” it’s got a better ring to it...bit like “Chiff Chaff” the dysillabic call being preferable to Chiffchaff...
Fair enough Ken, whatevs
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Old Friday 18th October 2019, 20:01   #22
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.......So I can “wind” the pedantics up like you.
... and ...

Quote:
Originally Posted by KenM View Post
... Larry if we’re going to focus on the pedanticity of this thread ... rather than the “matter” then can we use the correct vernacular regarding “ doing my head in”, If you really want gallery/street cred then you might get more mileage from “doin me ‘ed in” it’s got a better ring to it...bit like “Chiff Chaff” the dysillabic call being preferable to Chiffchaff...
Oh Ken, you put your foot in it every time, even when you are scolding others for being critical of you! In your first quote the word should be pedants (plural noun), whilst in your second it should read pedantics; pedanticity is not even a word - other than in your exclusive vocabulary. To top it off, you spell disyllabic incorrectly! You are truly the 'highfalutin' grand master of the malapropism; its part of what makes your contributions so entertaining!!

RB
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Old Friday 18th October 2019, 23:48   #23
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... and ...

Oh Ken, you put your foot in it every time, even when you are scolding others for being critical of you! In your first quote the word should be pedants (plural noun), whilst in your second it should read pedantics; pedanticity is not even a word - other than in your exclusive vocabulary. To top it off, you spell disyllabic incorrectly! You are truly the 'highfalutin' grand master of the malapropism; its part of what makes your contributions so entertaining!!

RB
Not “common currency” words in my vocabulary RB and after a glass of wine...well?

Hopefully you didn’t spend too long pouring over the dictionary or perhaps you’re up to speed with spellcheck now?

I understand it goes down well with Countdown and Cocoa.

I’m surprised you got the gist of my post with you being a senior and all that.

Anyway, here’s hoping you’ll soon be well enough to be allowed out by yourself.

It must be difficult using that Zimmer mounted draw tube, but then you being an “old contemptible”...you’ll get by!

TTFN

Last edited by KenM : Saturday 19th October 2019 at 10:54. Reason: edit
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Old Saturday 19th October 2019, 06:53   #24
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Where would we be without you and your ped antics Ken

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Old Saturday 19th October 2019, 11:11   #25
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Not “common currency” words in my vocabulary RB and after a glass of wine...well?

Hopefully you didn’t spend too long pouring over the dictionary or perhaps you’re up to speed with spellcheck now?

I understand it goes down well with Countdown and Cocoa.

I’m surprised you got the gist of my post with you being a senior and all that.

Anyway, here’s hoping you’ll soon be well enough to be allowed out by yourself.

It must be difficult using that Zimmer mounted draw tube, but then you being an “old contemptible”...you’ll get by!

TTFN
Poring Ken, unless you were 'pouring' your cocoa over said dictionary........
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