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Eurasian and Chinese Penduline Tits (1 Viewer)

Charles Harper

Régisseur
Does anyone have IDing experience of the two (allo)species?

I cannot seem to find comparative text on the internet or in my sparse library. I have looked at a number of web photos (including Adey Baker's of the former species and Wigan's of the latter here in the Gallery).

For adult males at least, it seems to me:

Eurasian: Larger mask and unbordered, greyish-white crown/head, a good bit of brown under, and a rich chestnut mantle.

Chinese: Narrower mask bordered with narrow white which contrasts with the grey crown, little or no brown on the grey breast, mantle grey-brown or brown-grey or grey.

From what I've written above, Chinese seem similar to female Eurasians. And then there are the females and juveniles and winter birds, whose photos leave me confounded.

Any pointers or links you can give me? I would be grateful.
 

StuartReeves

Local rarity
Hi Charles,

Referring to Harrap & Quinn's excellent "Tits, Nuthatches & Treecreepers", there isn't a direct comparison of the two species as their ranges are well separated. However, study of the plates seems to support the features you have gleaned from photos. In addition, Chinese seems to show a more prominent buff greater covert bar, partly because Eurasian shows a pale patch on the folded secondaries which means that there isn't so much contrast between the secondaries & the greater coverts on Eurasian. In female/immature plumages the white edges around the mask of Chinese lead to a pale supercilium and sub-moustachial which looks pretty distinctive.

Hope that helps,

Stuart
 

Charles Harper

Régisseur
.
Stuart, that's great-- so the white border to the mask evidently persists through the ages and sexes. Thanks so much. Now all I have to do is find the bird (one was reported in the area last Sunday).

Cheers,

Chas.
.
 

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