Home Forums Bird & Insect Sightings Chiffchaff

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  • Barrie Cooper
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    Post count: 94

    The regular Chiffchaff took an extended lunch in my garden today. An increase in midges thanks to the improved weather prolonged its visit. (Photo taken through window with vertical blind).

    Approx 1000 Pink-footed Geese in the fields immediately south of Freeman’s Wood and east of the cycle path at 09.00 before they moved onto Aldcliffe Marsh.
    Two Ravens on Colloway Marsh.

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    Brom
    Participant
    Post count: 10

    Nice photo – just a thought, don’t chiff-chaffs normally have dark legs? Those look quite pale…

    Barrie Cooper
    Participant
    Post count: 94

    Hi Brom, you’re right the feet certainly look pale on the photo. The Handbook of Western Palearctic Birds states that leg colour only distinguishes 75% of Common Chiffchaff from Willow Warbler. It goes onto say that both collybita and abietinus subspecies of Chiffchaff occasionally have “paler legs, brown rather than blackish, in practice very like Willow Warbler and inviting confusion”. This bird was displaying typical tail-dipping and call of Common Chiffchaff and was in the garden again today but I didn’t have my camera available and am reluctant to disturb it.

    It would be interesting to know where it was last summer, the BBC’s Winterwatch recently said that wintering ones here may come from Scandinavia. If anyone has a theory if this individual could be abietinus then it would be interesting to hear.

    Dan Haywood
    Participant
    Post count: 420

    I’ve seen Chiffchaffs with paler feet like this before.

    Plumage tones in pic very ‘collybita’.

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