GRC Blog

Welcome to the GRC Recorders pages. This blog provides details on all the relevant news of Glamorgan’s scarcer birds, plus all BBRC & WRP decisions that affect us locally. It will also be used to document the status and occurrence of these scarcer species and we welcome contributions from anyone with photographs, artwork or documentation of rarities past, present and future. The GRC also welcomes all seawatching news from around Glamorgan and news of passage migrants in spring & autumn, uncommon birds in our area and unusual behaviour.

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The Glamorgan Rarities Committee, in conjunction with the Glamorgan Bird Club & Gower Wildlife , have agreed to co-operate with the Welsh Ornithological Society in the sharing of bird records & photographs in the interest of keeping accurate records and to promote birdwatching in North, Mid & South Wales.

Saturday, 9 March 2013

Interesting Chiffie

 I noticed a couple of Chiffchaffs in Port Talbot, today. One of them caught my eye as being less usual. The ear-coverts were a nice warm buff colour and overall it looked brown-grey above and pale below. The other Chiffchaff that it was with looked generally more green in tone.

 Camera to hand I spent the next few minutes trying to get some record shots of a very active bird in poor light. Not a great combination and not great results. Some of the shots show the warmth of the ear-coverts and brown cap that becomes greyer going down the mantle. No yellow in the supercilium is good , and also bolder behind the eye which is also good. Some green tones in the wing can be made from some angles.
 However, what I was really hoping for was a distinctive call and that never came, both birds remained silent. Looking at the photos I'd also like to see a bit more contrast between the green tones in the wing and the "greyer" mantle and back. Whether the lack of good light contributes to this not showing in the photos or whether it just doesn't occur on this bird is debatable. I guess without a nice recording of the call this bird will remain just a chiffie.
 Any comments welcome on this subject especially warm buff ear-coverts occurring on non-tristis Chiffchaffs.


Barry Stewart said...

Plumage fits well within the parameters of what I understand Sibe Chiff to look like - a recording of the call would be perfect for completing the puzzle

Mark Hipkin said...

Thanks Barry. Yes it's a great shame i didn't hear it call. Oh well hopefully next time.

Phil B said...

Mark, I endorse Barry's comments. This looks very good for Siberian Chiffchaff in my view. A recording of the call would be helpful, but these things are often frustratingly silent in winter. Nevertheless, it already has strong credentials on the evidence of these images.