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Odd BOP NEast London (1 Viewer)


Well-known member
Sky-watching at 9.30 am this morning, I picked up this very high BOP going slowly NWest, as I didn't recognise the profile I took a shutter-burst of quite frankly awful images, however on enlargement and auto correction as bad as they are....I thought might be of interest?

Essentially body/ forewings and short tail white, with contrasting black rear wings.....best of a bad bunch!



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Well-known member
I suggest that the images are so poor and the image so degraded that it's not possible to come to any sensible conclusion.
Am inclined to agree there, suffice to say that it never struck me as a RK, they are as we know, quite numerous for most of us in the South East now.
This bird did appear to have pale/white under-wing coverts against contrastingly black secondaries, this feature alone struck me as quite odd in it’s own right, making it an interesting image.


Alexander Stöhr

Well-known member
Hello Ken,
yes, I can see Red Kite colours too, like Tom. And the kinked wing-tip of a RK, exaggerated by the white inner-primary-window can well be here in your bird, too. But the tail seems to be too short for an RK. Yes, this can easy be explained by the picture and its quality, so if I have been forced to put a name on this bird and knowing to have Toms comment in the back, I would say its a RK (might well be a Gull or something else)

Two questions, I am interested in, as always not meant as an offense:
You speak of auto-correction. Have you altered the images or are those straight out of the camera (yes, all cameras do some adjustement, I am no expert in this)? Is it possible to see all original pictures?

My aim is the following: what is possible to squeeze out of mediocre/bad-quality pictures? Does it help to get many pictures (I have learned for example that effort of image-stabilisation varies in an burst-series, even in high speed modus. So, one picture is sharp and shows details while the next, only taken a fraction of a second later is blurred and features are changed/shiftet/not visible.

EDIT: A big sorry to you Ken: I just read your comments again and missed one important thing: you excluded a Gull and it doesnt struck you as RK in the field? But even after looking at the pictures again, I think a RK might be the best guess.
And I think the best answer for this forum, is the one by John Cantelo.
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Well-known member
Alexander Hi,

Agreed, bloody awful messy images, however within that “mess” as you say the tail is too short and white/pale for RK, also the underwing pattern looks totally wrong for RK...I see enough of them. There is a “modus operandi” with birders to that which I subscribe to....“if in doubt defer to the commoner species” unfortunately for me it “didn’t ring any bells.”
Even allowing for pixelation I cannot reconcile the white body and underwing contrasting solids of white and black with RK therein lies my dilemma!


The Kerreran

Has hat, will stand in the rain
Hi Ken.
Despite the above, I can't help but respond to "white head and body, short white tail, white underwing coverts and black-looking flight feathers" with "Black-backed Gull". GBBs can look very un gull-like and even Lessers can be devils.
As you said, commoner species, and they're the locals in that colour scheme.

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