Mystery bird of prey?

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Posts: 57
Joined: Fri Mar 09, 2018 9:47 pm

Re: Mystery bird of prey?

Postby TheBirderman » Mon Sep 02, 2019 5:11 pm

Hmm yes what an occam's razor - from that angle it could have looked like an entirely different species. Great to see it resolved!

TheBirderMan, Tommy, ( ͡° ω ͡° )
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Tim Barnard
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Location: Okere Falls

Re: Mystery bird of prey?

Postby Tim Barnard » Tue Sep 03, 2019 6:51 am

Hi Sav,
I don't think anyone is claiming anything extravagant or a Mega... As I read this conversation, we are all just scratching our heads and trying hard to make sense of a striking bird, which at face value, does have a passing resemblance to an EMH. We have good pictures, its not a fly-by on a pelagic or a distant view, it's still there. It's intriguing.

Certainly a good bird to try and unpick. At the end of the day - it may well be an AH at the extreme of its range of variation. But lets enjoy the process of getting there. Would love to hear some arguments on plumage or structure that would nail it. As I've said previously, I've seen many bright/white AHs but none quite as striking as this ... or showing such a contrast in head and body.

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David Riddell
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Re: Mystery bird of prey?

Postby David Riddell » Tue Sep 03, 2019 8:14 am

Something that bugs me a bit, and maybe it's an artefact of the low-quality original photo, but Steve's photo shows a bird with an all-black head, while the bird in the original picture appears to have white well up the cheek, to not far below the eye? Are we sure these are the same individual?
Colin Miskelly
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Joined: Sat Jul 11, 2009 6:31 pm

Re: Mystery bird of prey?

Postby Colin Miskelly » Sun Jun 07, 2020 9:44 am

Hi all

It looks like this bird is still around

Kate & I have just returned from a [non-birding] visit to Richmond, and stayed in a B&B in 'Harts Rise', which turns out to be about 1 km from where this bird was seen in Jul-Aug 2019. We had a brief (but close) view of a very pale, dark-headed harrier on 5 June, and have only now had a chance to check where Steve Wood and others saw the bird last year.


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