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LBJ Glasgow Scotland (1 Viewer)

Muso

Well-known member
Scotland
Hi

Have quite a few sparrows coming to my garden feeders, also dunnock & bunting & LBJs in general around, but not sure if this is one of those in juvenile form....head shape and markings are confusing me...books/net not helping - taken in March

Thanks.
 

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Muso

Well-known member
Scotland
Reed Buntings

Thanks for speedy response, guys. Is it a juvenile? I had thought this pair were male & female adults, as seem more developed?
 

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Muso

Well-known member
Scotland
Not sure now if I have offended in my ignorance...it was a serious question, and I do struggle with the variation....male/female, adult/juvenile, winter/summer - Are the pair in the second picture not Reed Buntings...? I thought they were, and to me the first bird is very different from these....I know this is a common occurrence, but just looking for confirmation.

I am only an egg......
 

OlaB

Well-known member
Reed Buntings are difficult. From this picture I wouldn't dare say much but I would expect a male to have an adult-like head (or am I remembering wrong?). Ageing is extremely difficult in spring so a 2 cy+ female would be my guess.
 

Macswede

Macswede
I won't argue with you, Ola. I had a look in the field guides but was far from confident about it being a male. I certainly think it's a 2 cy bird though.
 

Muso

Well-known member
Scotland
Thanks all for input. I find the variation even in one species difficult for ID - although I'm learning, thanks to your expertise. I appreciate you taking the time to help.

Ian
 

OlaB

Well-known member
Ah well, in that case I give up. There's lot of variation between illustrations in the field guides though so I'm guessing there's a lot of variation in the birds themselves.
Indeed there is. Sometimes a little too much variation. ;-)
 

Muso

Well-known member
Scotland
Thanks Jane, but that takes me back to previous question: if single bird is an adult, then what are the pair in the other pic? The one in the bottom left of the pic was (I thought) adult female (no black cap on head - difficult to see from pic - sorry). Here's another of what I thought was the adult female (taken Feb last year) - search of pix on the net seem to support this? Seems quite different to me?
 

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Jane Turner

Well-known member
The top bird is certainly a male,the lower bird might be or might not be, I can't see enough to age either of them

the pic above is a female - again I can't age it for certain
 

OlaB

Well-known member
The bird is definitely not born this year - you can see the shape of the tail feathers well enough. If its a march photo you can also say it wasn't born last year, so adult female looks likely, though hard to exclude a tardy male without seeing the nape and crown better

Ad on left

http://www.davidnorman.org.uk/MRG/mid August mixture photos/REEBU tails montage (1200 x 378).jpg
Since the tail can be quite heavily worn by march I wouldn't be completely certain in saying it's definitely not a 2 cy bird. Some birds can replace tailfeathers post juvenile too (even though I guess it's not very common). Maybe you can but I can't judge the shape of the tail feathers well enough. Might be shortage on my side there though. B :)
 

Muso

Well-known member
Scotland
The first post pic seems to me very different from the others I posted, which going by other pix on the net seem to be adults. First pic bird is very non-fluffy and "smooth" - adults (if that's what they are...) seem rounder with more feather to them....are reed buntings just difficult??!!
 
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