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Passerine bird identification, Northwest Turkey (1 Viewer)

cduruk

Active member
Turkey
These rocks are at the outskirts of a residential area. First I thought these to be ortolan buntings, but nesting in rocks is not something they do, as far as I could find. Then I thought of house sparrows, but the well-defined whiteness at the throat did not fit. Then I thought of rock sparrows, but the supercilium should have been more distinct. There are two birds in each photo. One is flying in the first one. Check the corners in the second photo. June 2022, Northwest Turkey. Thanks in advance...
 

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THE_FERN

Well-known member
Without certainty...

This looks to me like a juvenile or immature yellow-throated (rock) sparrow. I see it as similar to this:

ML204808261 Yellow-throated Sparrow Macaulay Library

Ebird suggests that a sighting from NW Turkey would be unusual depending precisely where that is (sorry if you said I didn't look).

For me it would be difficult to reconcile that clear white throat and pink bill with anything else... ...but happy to be corrected

Edit: even on a phone I can see artifacts/lighting effects in the first image which serve to make the bill appear thicker than it should (i.e. appear more like a "regular" sparrow)
 

Butty

Well-known member
I can see artifacts/lighting effects in the first image which serve to make the bill appear thicker than it should (i.e. appear more like a "regular" sparrow)
I disagree that there is any such effect but I'm happy to consider the alternative ID 👍🏻
 

cduruk

Active member
Turkey
Without certainty...

This looks to me like a juvenile or immature yellow-throated (rock) sparrow. I see it as similar to this:

ML204808261 Yellow-throated Sparrow Macaulay Library

Ebird suggests that a sighting from NW Turkey would be unusual depending precisely where that is (sorry if you said I didn't look).

For me it would be difficult to reconcile that clear white throat and pink bill with anything else... ...but happy to be corrected

Edit: even on a phone I can see artifacts/lighting effects in the first image which serve to make the bill appear thicker than it should (i.e. appear more like a "regular" sparrow)
As for the precise location; here is the geographically European part of Turkey, or Southeastern Europe, by another expression. I checked the distribution in ebird. Rock sparrow is unlikely to be there, but that would not be a shocking record, I think :). As for the yellow-throated sparrow, it would be shocking :)
 

THE_FERN

Well-known member
As for the precise location; here is the geographically European part of Turkey, or Southeastern Europe, by another expression. I checked the distribution in ebird. Rock sparrow is unlikely to be there, but that would not be a shocking record, I think :). As for the yellow-throated sparrow, it would be shocking :)
I think the problems here for the alternative suggestions are:

spanish etc. sparrow: pink bill in image 1, clearly demarcated v white throat
rock sparrow: as above, also shape, nature of supercilium (not strong, white, and without clear strong contrasting brown above)
 

cduruk

Active member
Turkey
Thank you all for the contributions. My preference for the moment, is to classify this as unidentified. I will have a chance to visit the same spot in the coming days. If I see them again, I will try to take more pictures from various angles. I will post here if I can do so.
 

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