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Thread: Orphean Warbler Hartlepool 29/05/2012

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian S View Post
    Graeme

    Congratulations on your find. I hope you don't think that our mulling over the ID of Orphean Warblers is in any way questioning yours and Chris's identification of the bird. I had no doubt you had taken care to get it right, but it is nice to discuss these things and use them as a catalyst to learn things from. I look forward to reading the article on the bird.

    Brian S
    Hi Brian

    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!

    Cheers, Graeme

  2. #22
    Moderator Brian S's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by magifrig View Post
    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!

    Cheers, Graeme
    Any more than that would be plain greedy

    Brian S

  3. #23
    Senior Member RoyHargreaves's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian S View Post
    Any more than that would be plain greedy

    Brian S
    Oh I don't know - I can't complain as they are more than happy to share their megas with others Living in Hertfordshire you get used to going elsewhere to see mega birds. In the time I have lived here the only mega in Herts was the Eastern Crowned Warbler and I wasn't going to get to see that.

    What I find interesting are the contradictory reports that the Scilly bird has or has not been ascribed to hortensis. I thought it was not ascribed to a taxon, but gather that several people believe it to be Western and no doubt others who have seen both birds will want it to be an Eastern.

    Roy

  4. #24
    Moderator Brian S's Avatar
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    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...

    Brian S

  5. #25
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    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.

  6. #26
    Moderator Brian S's Avatar
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    Lee

    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

    Brian S

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian S View Post
    I would think that Eastern has a longer and spiky bill compared with Western, but I would not describe it as 'heavier'.
    Cretzschmar obviously thought it was, in naming it crassirostris ("thick-billed").

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelF View Post
    Cretzschmar obviously thought it was, in naming it crassirostris ("thick-billed").
    Not thicker than hortensis, but longer and spikier.

    Bill depths from Shirihai et al
    hortensis - 4.2-5.6mm (4.7 av)
    crassirostris - 4.5-5.0mm (4.7 av.)

    Bill lengths
    hortensis - 15.3-16.9mm
    crassirostris - 18.0-22.1mm

    Brian S

  9. #29
    Moderator Brian S's Avatar
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    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.

    Brian S

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