Wednesday, 19 October 2016

Long-billed Dowitchers

A poke around my reserve woodlot Wednesday showed one or two migrants still present there, including a further male Narcissus Flycatcher Ficedula narcissina for the autumn and a couple of Arctic Warblers Phylloscopus borealis. The Arctic Warbler seemed to be yet another 'variant' for the autumn, with dull (rather than moss) green upperparts, rather grey-brown legs, and noticeably dark grey breast sides which almost formed a complete breast band. Whether or not all these subtle plumage differences represent different age classes or different populations, for a relatively 'featureless' species, Arctic Warbler exhibits quite astonishing variation! 

There were a few local things of interest around, too, bird-wise a Malayan Night Heron Gorsachius melanolophus (which could also have been a migrant) and dragonfly-wise a juvenile male Eastern Lilysquatter Paracercion melanotum (doing its best to look like a bluetail), somewhat unexpected right down on the coast (though an infrequent visitor to Area B).

The drive home produced a single Ruff Philomachus pugnax and not one but three Long-billed Dowitchers Limnodromus scolopaceus. Two of these were already in winter plumage (and presumably adult), whilst a third was still acquiring winter plumage (and presumably juvenile).

A quite reasonable morning all told, which goes to show that there is always something there to be found if you bother to look! Above photos taken in Qi Gu, Tainan County 19/10/16.

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