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Can you help identify these birds

Can you help identify these birds


Postby snodland » Wed Sep 18, 2013 12:58 am

Just upgraded from the Lumix DMC-FZ 5 (yeah they did make them about 7 years ago) to the DMC-FZ 200. It will take ages to get used to it and so I apologise for the grainy photos. I would welcome any help in identifying or confirming identification of the birds in these photos.

First 3 were actually taken on Loch Long, a Sea Loch near Dornie. I think the red headed one is a widgeon but can't be sure.

The bird if prey series of photos was above the Carr Brae road again near Dornie. The bird was about 400 metres away. By the tail shape I thought it was a buzzard but instead of soaring in a circle it was more often hovering above one spot like a kestrel (it was though too big to be a kestrel). I have seen an eagle over the Carr Brae 3 years ago but wasn't sure that this was big enough.

Bird on Loch Long (1280x960) (1024x768).jpg

Along the River Glennan (1280x960) (1024x768).jpg
Actually on Loch Long

Along the River Glennan (1) (1280x960) (1024x768).jpg

Bird hovering above Carr Brae (1) (1280x960) (1024x768).jpg

Bird hovering above Carr Brae (2) (1280x960) (1024x768).jpg

Bird hovering above Carr Brae (3) (1280x960) (1024x768).jpg

Bird hovering above Carr Brae (4) (1280x960) (1024x768).jpg

Bird hovering above Carr Brae (5) (1280x960) (1024x768).jpg

Bird hovering above Carr Brae (6) (1280x960) (1024x768).jpg

Bird hovering above Carr Brae (7) (1280x960) (1024x768).jpg

Bird hovering above Carr Brae (8) (1280x960) (1024x768).jpg

Bird hovering above Carr Brae (9) (1280x960) (1024x768).jpg

Bird hovering above Carr Brae (10) (1280x960) (1024x768).jpg

Bird hovering above Carr Brae (11) (1280x960) (1024x768).jpg

Bird hovering above Carr Brae (12) (1280x960) (1024x768).jpg

Bird hovering above Carr Brae (13) (1280x960) (1024x768).jpg
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Re: Can you help identify these birds

Postby jmarkb » Wed Sep 18, 2013 8:37 am

Second and third photos look like a Little Grebe http://www.rspb.org.uk/wildlife/birdguide/name/l/littlegrebe/index.aspx , sometimes called a Dabchick: good spot! I think the bird of prey is a buzzard: they do hover sometimes, but unlike kestrels they need a headwind to be able to do it. First one is hard to tell: possibly curlew from the long beak?
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Re: Can you help identify these birds

Postby gmr82 » Fri Sep 27, 2013 10:07 pm

Yep i agree with jmarkb. Definitely a little grebe, and again the best guess would be a buzzard for the latter. I always find the hovering buzzard sightings intriguing as the official line is that only kestrels can hover, but there are many many sightings of hovering buzzards so I'm not entirely sure why the kestrel-only still persists........

PS to jmarkb. Blackford Pond has a healthy population of little grebes nowadays. Whereas when I first spotted them 3(ish) years back they were outrageously difficult to catch on camera, now they seem far more at ease and there has been the added bonus of numerous chicks the past couple of years too
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Re: Can you help identify these birds

Postby CharlesT » Sat Sep 28, 2013 10:02 am

One for the expert birders here, but it's just possible the buzzard is a vagrant Rough-Legged Buzzard. They are slightly larger than a common buzzard, have longer tails and are skilful hoverers. They also show a distinct kink at the carpal joints, which appears to show up in one of the pics. Too indistinct for a wholly positive id, but worth a thought.
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Re: Can you help identify these birds

Postby jmarkb » Mon Sep 30, 2013 8:08 am

gmr82 wrote:Blackford Pond has a healthy population of little grebes nowadays. Whereas when I first spotted them 3(ish) years back they were outrageously difficult to catch on camera, now they seem far more at ease and there has been the added bonus of numerous chicks the past couple of years too


Thanks for that: I'll keep an eye out next time I'm passing!
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Re: Can you help identify these birds

Postby BoyVertiginous » Mon Sep 30, 2013 3:58 pm

Hen Harrier (female)?
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Re: Can you help identify these birds

Postby CharlesT » Mon Sep 30, 2013 4:28 pm

BoyVertiginous wrote:Hen Harrier (female)?

Good call, but if it was buzzard size, then it would be a bit too large and the tail doesn't look quite right for a Hen Harrier for me. However, probably a better call than mine, but not aware of Hen Harriers hovering except Barn Owl like near the ground over prey.
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Re: Can you help identify these birds

Postby andyfitz » Thu Oct 03, 2013 10:04 pm

The first photo looks like a greenshank.
The raptor, I would suggest is 99% sure to be a buzzard. If a rough legged buzzard then it is quite lost. One of the photos does give it a kind of Osprey look but looks like a buzzard.
Also - little grebes are cool.
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Re: Can you help identify these birds

Postby David-Main » Sun Oct 13, 2013 2:43 pm

1st photo - Bar-Tailed Godwit
2nd " - Little Grebe
3rd " - Buzzard
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Re: Can you help identify these birds

Postby ALANREIDHILLS » Wed Nov 20, 2013 5:05 pm

David-Main wrote:1st photo - Bar-Tailed Godwit
2nd " - Little Grebe
3rd " - Buzzard


You have my votes David, though I'm uncertain about the godwit.
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Re: Can you help identify these birds

Postby snodland » Thu Nov 28, 2013 12:54 am

Thanks everyone. At the RSPB Quiz night at Hillhead Sports Club in Glasgow I did solicit some further ....supposedly expert opinion. They all thought the first one was a Greenshank (too pale for a Bar Tailed Godwit they thought) and agreed with the Little Grebe and the Buzzard.
On the other hand what do they know as my team won the First Prize in the quiz (hic!)
Cheers to everybody who has posted though.
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Re: Can you help identify these birds

Postby David-Main » Sat Dec 07, 2013 10:25 pm

A Greenshank has no black tip to the bill, a Bar-Tailed godwit has, as is the one in your pic can be seen , also a Bar-tailed is a lot lighter in winter plumage.
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