May 30th, 2012, 09:11 PM
Originally Posted by Brian S
Of course not. I have enjoyed the analysis of the past records which I might 'borrow' for the article if you don't mind! In the past 12 months Hartlepool Headland has produced White-throated Robin, Sandhill Crane and Orphean Warbler. Not sure if it can get any better but we'll keep trying!
May 31st, 2012, 06:21 AM
May 31st, 2012, 09:46 AM
May 31st, 2012, 09:52 AM
In my opinion the descriptions suggest strongly that it was a Western, with rear flanks and undertail coverts richly buff. There are stories of some birders on Scilly at the time only seeing the twitch for the bird from above as they took off from the airport...
May 31st, 2012, 01:44 PM
The Scilly Orphean
Chris Heard compiled some excellent notes on the Higher Moors Orphean Warbler and from these it is possible to conclude that the bird was a WESTERN (undertail covert colouration and shading). In fact, it seems likely that the majority of extralimital records of Orphean Warbler are of this species.
EASTERN ORPHEAN WARBLER has a much faster, richer and more musical song than its western counterpart and is very Common Nightingale like in sound and has a Blackcap-like contact note. As Roy Hargreaves commented, the undertail coverts are dark-centred in Eastern and although difficult to see, they do create a suffused patterning when seen well. Easterns are also very clean white below and have a much heavier bill; the upperparts are distinctively paler grey and the black cap more pronounced and more contrasting.
May 31st, 2012, 04:19 PM
I think in general terms you are right about the plumage of orphean warblers, but (being the pendant that I am) I might argue that there is a touch more variability in the upperpart colour of Eastern Orphean dependent upon age and sex and race and wear; also, though Eastern is usually whiter below with a restricted grey wash to the flanks, the underparts can vary a little. I would think that Eastern has a longer and spiky bill compared with Western, but I would not describe it as 'heavier'.
http://orientalbirdimages.org/images..._warbler_1.jpg - crassirostris jerdoni - check the bill out
http://www.hawar-islands.com/blog/me...ndan/orph1.JPG - crassirostris September - as first-winter
http://www.flickr.com/photos/rashed11112/3412214691/ - crassirostris male in April - note undertail coverts, but also fairly strong wash on underparts and subtly pinker rear flanks - dark eye suggests 1-s
May 31st, 2012, 08:00 PM
Cretzschmar obviously thought it was, in naming it crassirostris ("thick-billed").
Originally Posted by Brian S
May 31st, 2012, 08:37 PM
Not thicker than hortensis, but longer and spikier.
Originally Posted by MichaelF
Bill depths from Shirihai et al
hortensis - 4.2-5.6mm (4.7 av)
crassirostris - 4.5-5.0mm (4.7 av.)
hortensis - 15.3-16.9mm
crassirostris - 18.0-22.1mm
June 1st, 2012, 07:09 AM
I would like to correct what I wrote in post two about the two autumn records: the Aberdeen bird in October 1982 was described as having a white eye and therefore an adult. The other autumn bird, Porthgwarra in October 1967, had a dark eye and was a first-winter.