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ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Columbia

Dark-bellied Brent Goose (Island of Texel, Netherlands, March 27 2021) (1 Viewer)

Frank-birding

Frank van de Velde
Supporter
Last weekend when observing Brent Geese on Texel (Waddensea side) I saw 2 or 3 very light-coloured individuals in the midst of a large group of "appropriately" dark looking Dark-bellied Brent Goose.

At first I assumed that I was observing Pale-bellied Brent Goose. But later I started to doubt. Although I feel that the contrast between black breast and pale belly would be great enough for Pale-bellied, I also distinguish contrast between the rear of the belly (between the legs) and the white undertail coverts. I read that in Pale-bellied Brent Geese the pale belly should gradually morph into the white of the under tail, without a visible separation between the color shade of belly and tail.

So "my" birds doesn't seem to be Pale-bellied. But still, they appear to me as very (too?) light for regular Dark-Bellied. Am I dealing with hybrids? Is it just individual variation, or very worn birds?

I'd love to know a bit more, any help would be much appreciated.

Bye, Frank
 

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Alexander Stöhr

Well-known member
Hello Frank,
interesting bird, thanks for sharing. Such slightly, but clear paler birds are sometimes mixed in between Dark-bellied BG, and I have allways identified them as Dark-bellied BG before.
The few Pale-bellied BG I saw and could id as such, where slightly paler-bellied birds with clear whitish areas on the (rear) flanks (white areas on variable extent, but allways present).
But there were a few birds where I hoped that an experienced birder was standing next to me and helped me with a confident identification and some explanation (same situation as in larger Gulls or Skuas).
And I see, that your pictures are very slightly overexposed, exagereting the pale flanks and belly, I think.

A similar bird to yours, with help by Jochen Dierschke, is here: https://club300.de/gallery/forum_topic.php?id=76155&dir=0
 

Frank-birding

Frank van de Velde
Supporter
Hi Alexander,

Thank you for your explanation. I think it's safe to say then that the paler color is due to individual variation within Dark-bellied BG. Good to know, and also of your experiences with similar birds.
The images were indeed exposed with a full +1 stop compensation, dialed in to prevent underexposure as I was also photographing the birds against the sky.

Best regards,
Frank
 
ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Columbia
ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Colombia
ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Colombia

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