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GAME: name that bird!


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Soukous
21 minutes ago, Galana said:

OK. Should we be looking at Woodpeckers perhaps?

'fraid not

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Woo Hoo! You got it. @mvecht It is a female Jungle Bush Quail. Shot (with a camera ) in Ranthambhore n November 2019     and here is the male    

I've always viewed the thread "Where was the picture taken" as an extension of this thread "Name the bird", except that the former had to have a picture of wildlife, not necessary a bird. I think both

~ Dear Friends @Soukousand @Galana:   Thank you so much for your kind comments above. I'm grateful for your interest in the East Asian students who have enjoyed playing this game.  

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Galana

Not been to Peru but how about elsewhere south of the Rio Grande including Falklands?

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inyathi

@SoukousNo one seems to be getting anywhere with this one yet, I'm not sure what it is, but I don't think your travels have extended to the New World, thus far, so I will go somewhere entirely different, I don't know if you would have been to any of the right spots to see this bird, but I will suggest Dark-sided Thrush (Zoothera marginata)? I'm not totally confident but it looks rather thrush like to me.

Edited by inyathi
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Soukous
11 hours ago, Galana said:

Not been to Peru but how about elsewhere south of the Rio Grande including Falklands?

 

no, Latin America is mostly blank on my map

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Soukous

Much closer @inyathi, I have been to that part of the world

Edited by Soukous
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Galana

Phew. The problems I had flying from the New World to the old with all these restrictions.

Any way I will follow @inyathito India but go for Plain-backed Thrush.

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inyathi

@SoukousI didn't think that was going to be a bullseye, Dark-sided Thrush is principally a Southeast Asian species, so it's distribution in the Indian Sub is pretty limited, I thought you may not have been to the right places, if you haven't been further East, to have seen it, but I hadn't found a good alternative, but perhaps @Galanahas, Plain-backed Thrush looks a bit more promising as far distribution is concerned, looking at photos suggests it could be that perhaps, I should have looked at more photos earlier. 

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Soukous

Not a Plain-backed Thrush I'm afraid. 

You seem to be doing fine, but if you would like a photo that will make it obvious just say the wordB)

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Galana

Well it is the lack of eye-stripe that is puzzling as well as definition of the actual bird image.

Not much in Africa fits despite a healthy sample of Turdus and relatives so it is logical to head to India where Zoothera fit better. But it all could be a wild thrush chase in the end. I will stick it out on Zootherans (having wasted time on surf birds :() and have a last throw with Long tailed.

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Soukous

Sorry Fred, not long TAILED. I'll wait to see if @inyathigets it next time and then post a new image that will make it obvious

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inyathi

@Soukous We've almost run out of Zootheras, so I will try something different and suggest female Chestnut-bellied Rock Thrush (Monticola rufiventris)?

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Soukous
5 minutes ago, inyathi said:

@Soukous We've almost run out of Zootheras, so I will try something different and suggest female Chestnut-bellied Rock Thrush (Monticola rufiventris)?

 

Oh dear, we're drifting away.

Here's a better photo

ntb.jpg.e23e5a4730528d65b46f7960236b5a31.jpg

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inyathi

@SoukousWell I could now suggest Long-billed Zoothera monticolla but it can't be that, because the bill is not long enough or nearly heavy enough, in fact in your new shot, the bird looks even more a like Dark-sided Thrush, this is based on the photos I'm looking at, I've seen and photographed Dark-sided, I've never seen Long-billed, I'm certain it's a thrush and your last comment seems to confirm that, it looks like Zoothera rather than Turdus, the bill seems too long for any species from the latter genus, so at this point I'm confused. :unsure:

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Soukous
2 minutes ago, inyathi said:

Well I could now suggest Long-billed Zoothera monticolla but it can't be that,

 

According to the 3 birding guides I was with at the time that is exactly what it is. :huh:

 

Uttarakhand, in the hills by the Ramganga river.

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Soukous
25 minutes ago, inyathi said:

I could now suggest Long-billed Zoothera monticolla but it can't be that

 

I just checked with friend/guide in India. He confirms it as Long-billed Thrush. I'm not clever enough to argue. :wacko:

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Galana

Then I would claim Long-billed. Never argue with the judge.

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Galana

Addendum.

Looking back at the original I think the bird has a seed in its bill thus hiding the full length and one can just see the start of spots on the breast.

But one can be forgiven for thinking that the 2nd photo is a totally different bird.

 

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Soukous
39 minutes ago, Galana said:

Addendum.

Looking back at the original I think the bird has a seed in its bill thus hiding the full length and one can just see the start of spots on the breast.

But one can be forgiven for thinking that the 2nd photo is a totally different bird.

 

 

and they are both pretty iffy photos. But no-one said it had to be easy :rolleyes:

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inyathi

@Soukous Well they should certainly know better than I do, I can only suggest that there must be some variation in the size/shape of the bill perhaps related to age. The book Birds of the Indian Subcontinent states that the bill has a prominent hook, your second bird certainly doesn't have a prominent hook, Birds of Vietnam simply states it has an extremely long bill. The reason I rejected long billed is based on the photos on the Oriental Bird Images website, if you look at the very first image there, you will see exactly why, I said it cannot be long-billed, that bird has a huge bill nothing like yours, however, looking at a lot of the other photos, (I don't think I've looked at all of them) I can see that there is variation, so perhaps there are some there, that do look a bit more like your bird.

 

OBI Long-Billed Thrush

 

Here's a photo from Wikipedia that also illustrates my problem with your bird 

 

2048px-Zoothera_monticola.jpg
Zoothera monticola
Umeshsrinivasan, CC BY-SA 3.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0>, via Wikimedia Commons

 

Here's a Dark-sided Thrush for comparison

 

1024px-Zoothera_marginata_-_Doi_Inthanon
Zoothera marginata - Doi Inthanon
JJ Harrison (https://www.jjharrison.com.au/), CC BY-SA 3.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0>, via Wikimedia Commons

 

The length of the bill was one of the things that I noticed straight away in your first shot, but it just didn't look quite long enough, for Long-billed, so I never suggested it.

 

Looking at distribution maps both Long-billed and Dark-sided occur in Uttarakhand, but the Long-billed occurs almost throughout, whereas Dark-sided only occurs in the east, distribution maps can never be 100% accurate, so I can't definitely say if the Dark-sided occurs around the Ramganga or not, but it is shown not far away. Looking at the distribution of Long-billed, I'm not too surprised I've not seen it, it's distribution is mostly India, Nepal, Bhutan, I obviously missed it when I was in the area where you were. It's hardly found in Southeast Asia, it just occurs on the Burmese border with India and then in Vietnam, interestingly the BirdLife map, shows it occurring in Vietnam in the Northwest and then two areas further south, I visited both of these areas on my recent trip there, however, the Vietnam book, only shows it occurring in the Northwest. The book Birds of South East Asia doesn't have distribution maps, it just says it occurs in West Tonkin which is Northwest Vietnam. It's not a species that has been split, so I can only conclude that the BirdLife map is wrong, assuming that new populations have not just been discovered, which seems unlikely, the map on the IUCN Red LIst website is the same as BirdLife's and says date of assessment 2016, BirdLife's map is dated 2021. I have not found any information online, suggesting that the Long-billed occurs anywhere in Vietnam, except for West Tonkin, this just goes to show that distribution maps can't be relied on.        

 

Long-billed Thrush map

 

Dark-sided Thrush map

 

To further confuse matters, since I started typing, I had another look online, and found one website that calls the Dark-sided thrush the Lesser Long-billed thrush, that could be an alternative name and on the Avibase website for Dark-sided it says 

 

Quote

It is also known as the Lesser Brown Thrush, the Long-billed Ground-thrush and the Dark-sided Ground-thrush

 

Avibase

 

This raises the obvious question could the bird be a Dark-sided Thrush and your guides know the species by one of these alternative names? Had the possibility of confusing names not arisen, I would have just said, I will defer to your guide friends and their local knowledge.

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Galana
9 hours ago, Galana said:

Well it is the lack of eye-stripe that is puzzling.

The more I read the more I fall back on my maxim that "Birds don't read guide books."

Having read all the above I had a tyro's look at what one of my books say.  (Helm's Birds of Northern India)

My first impression of the bird is quoted above. The face in the flying shot is definitely 'whiter' with the ear spot very clear.

This matches the book below.

thrushes227.jpg.8e13e299b59a85205c48185c4b4a7bbf.jpg

To be honest there is not that much difference in the bill size so dark sided would get my vote here.

 

The accompanying text is below.

thrush.JPG.ad7ea7a39c6c577c8c6e09c1c8ecfc8e.JPG

Note the reference to the sides of the head in each. OK the gutter lost the final word but I also note the residence.

4. 'breeds 2000-3000m in HR and UR.

5. Himalayas. UR.

Experts differ but I think Rob gets the medal here.

What do I know? I had it down for a Peruvian Surf Bird or woodpecker.:blink:

 

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Soukous

As I said, I'm just going by what the guide told me as I was not familiar with either Thrush. 

I think Rob could be correct, he has certainly amassed enough evidence to convince a jury and I do know that local guides often slip into the habit of using a local or colloquial name for species.

 

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inyathi

@Soukous @Galana

 

Thanks, whatever the truth about that bird, I will stay away from thrushes for the moment.

 

How about this one.

 

47650760632_f913f75d70_o.jpg 

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Galana
1 hour ago, inyathi said:

How about this one.

Probably worse.:lol:

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Soukous
1 hour ago, inyathi said:

whatever the truth about that bird, I will stay away from thrushes for the moment.

 

I am still investigating and have experts in India arguing about it. Luckily an experienced Indian birder was with me and he also has photos so hopefully they will reach consensus soon.

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Galana
9 hours ago, Galana said:

Probably worse.

I lied.:P

I could see a family resemblance to a Zitter so homed in on the rest of the family.

The plain back helped narrow down my search a fair bit as did the lovely foxy red cape.

I am not 100% but I recall something similar when in The Gambia so my first punt would be Rufous Cisticola and if wrong I have  few more in reserve.;)

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