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Black-eared wheatear

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Offline lucy

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« on: April 22, 2008, 12:17 PM »
Montjuic sometimes offers surprises, especially in spring, and this morning I saw a Black-eared wheatear by the castle walls.  It immediately reminded me of walking in the sierra de LĂ­bar, but with its white throat it's slightly different from the one John C. has posted in the gallery:


Offline Clive

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« Reply #1 on: April 22, 2008, 20:35 PM »
Just as I think I have learned a bird, up pops something else to confuse me!

So is the pale throated bit a "morph" or a normal part of changing plumage? It says in my Collins that the male has a pale throat in the summer but its only April so what's going on?

Here's a photo of the bird in the libar for us all to compare... (Sorry JohnC I saw you creeping up on this one but I had already got it :) )

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Offline John C

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« Reply #2 on: May 11, 2008, 19:04 PM »
The Black-eared Wheatear has two morphs - white and black throated.  The Collins Bird Guide illustrates both and mentions them in the text.  It says that the white-throated morph is commonest in the west (it's found throughout the Mediterranean basin), but this is confusing as Spain is an exception to this rule of thumb since the black-throated form is c67% of the population,


Offline Algarvebirdman

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« Reply #3 on: May 22, 2008, 00:42 AM »
I know of no data to substantiate but 67% black-throated form fits in with southern Portugal pretty well, although if anything I'd guess it was a little closer to 50/50.


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« Reply #4 on: May 22, 2008, 19:48 PM »
Like Algarvebirdman I know of no published data/evidence to support 67% dominance of the black-throated form, but I suspect John will give us a pointer. At least locally around the Serrania de Ronda and Sierra de Grazalema the black-throated form is certainly dominant perhaps to a higher degree than 67%. During the course of my Oenanthe sp. research then both trapped and observed territorial birds show to a much higher degree as being of the form dark-throated 'morph'. The prime target species of the research is for Black Wheatear Oenanthe leucura, but because these crafty little blighters avoid capture on most field outings I end-up catching good numbers of Oenanthe hispanica and O.oenanthe (who both show less selective behaviour when trying to take my mealworms)!!