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Common or Honey ? (1 Viewer)

Jean FRANCOIS

Well-known member
Hello,
What do you think of this bird ?
(south-central France, August 8).
Thank you in advance.
Jean, for another person
 

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Richard Prior

Halfway up an Alp
Europe
I'd have said HB on shape, apart from the tail, look at head protrusion and typical, more obvious, carpal bend?

That's funny Andy because I immediately thought the head looked too chunky and the neck too short for HB!;)
The just-fledged Common Buzzard here the past two weeks all look HB shaped, I've spent many a happy(?) hour sorting them out!
 

John Cantelo

Well-known member
Common Buzzard - the head shape (and much else) looks spot on to me.

I know it's said that young HBs tend to have shorter tails than adult HBs to more closely resemble Common Buzzards (on the assumption it affords them some protection to look like a supposed tougher customer) but if so why then do young CBs sport longer tails making them look less like experienced adults and more like effete HBs?
 

Richard Prior

Halfway up an Alp
Europe
Common Buzzard - the head shape (and much else) looks spot on to me.

I know it's said that young HBs tend to have shorter tails than adult HBs to more closely resemble Common Buzzards (on the assumption it affords them some protection to look like a supposed tougher customer) but if so why then do young CBs sport longer tails making them look less like experienced adults and more like effete HBs?

I think it's perhaps rather the bulging secondaries on young CB that give the impression that the tail is longer, as the wings look 'pinched in' where they meet the tail base (or perhaps that's just me !).
John, you're the second person that I've heard/read tell of this 'protection' strategy of HB young resembling CBs but in reality it's just a structural thing I'd guess....
 

John Cantelo

Well-known member
I think it's perhaps rather the bulging secondaries on young CB that give the impression that the tail is longer, as the wings look 'pinched in' where they meet the tail base (or perhaps that's just me !).
John, you're the second person that I've heard/read tell of this 'protection' strategy of HB young resembling CBs but in reality it's just a structural thing I'd guess....

It was mentioned in an article or book somewhere but I can't recall where!
 

Deb Burhinus

Used to be well known! 😎
Europe
Last edited:

Richard Prior

Halfway up an Alp
Europe

tconzemi

Tom
Supporter
Europe
Indeed I have heard this several times regarding plumage and seen various papers postulating the same. Like this in BB for example:

https://britishbirds.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/article_files/V99/V99_N03/V99_N03_P118_128_A001.pdf

(The 3 bars on the primaries and secondaries are diagnostic of HB in all plumages with juv having more although less extensive)

I find the idea that juvenile HB are mimicing CB rather strange. It seems logical, and as mentioned in the paper above, that several pernis species evolved in mimicing fierce raptors present in the same region. From personal observations this is also true for our HB. At several nest sites of Hobby over the years, adult birds do not bother or only get nervous when CB is approaching very close to the nest, but get crazy when a Goshawk is close (which is obviously a normal reaction), but they also attack any HB passing by even afar, so in my personal opinion HB is mimicing Goshawk in our regions (tail pattern, length) and the fact that juvenile HB would mimicing the rather boaring CB sounds not logical to me.
 
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