Here are the answers to challenge #10 of 2013
Thank you to all of you who made an effort and took part, and a big well done to Ladybirder for getting full marks.
The average score was 5.18/8 or 64.78%
#1 White-winged Tern
- No problems here, everyone nailed this one. Well done! Photo taken at Mkhombo Dam, Mpumalanga
#2 Cuckoo Finch
- Overall yellow colour, with small tail. Back markings aren't correct for any of the weavers or Canaries. Photo taken at Vlaklaagte, Mpumalanga
#3 Cape Rock Thrush (female)
– Almost everyone got that it was one of the Rock Thrushes, but a lot of people didn't get it down to the correct species. Female Short-toed has a conspicuous white throat patch, and the markings on the throat of female Sentinel fade into the orange on the breast. Photo taken at Suikerbosrand, Gauteng
#4 Wahlberg's Eagle
- I tried to make it a bit difficult by using an underexposed photo so the coulours are a bit harder to make out. This is to show that when IDing raptors size and shape can often be more important than the colouring. Wahlberg's has a very distinct flight shape where it keeps its tail in a rectangular shape instead of fanned out, and also has very straight wings. All of you did really well here. Photo taken at Mabusa, Mpumalanga.
#5 Buffy Pipit
- This one caused quite a few problems. This is a very weirdly coloured Buffy Pipit, which is usually more sandy brown than this. This individual is in worn plumage, which makes it look like a darker grey-brown, more like the colour of Plain-backed Pipit. Good features to look at are the facial markings, because Plain-backed and Long-tailed have much more distinct superciliums and malar stripes than Buffy. This bird has basically no malar stripe, and a very weak buff supercilium. It also has a pinkish base to the bill, whereas Plain-backed usually has a more yellowish base (Note: Mandible colour should not be used alone as a distinguishing factor, but more of a guide, as light can sometimes manipulate the colour a bit.) Photo taken at Vlaklaagte, Mpumalaga.
#6 Red-winged Francolin
- No problems here, everyone got it. Photo taken at Dullstroom, Mpumalanga
#7 Southern Banded Snake Eagle
- This one was very tough, and only Ladybirder got it correct. Most people said an Accipiter of some sort, but the tail is too short, and the wing projections not long enough to be an Accipiter. It is also showing a slight crested appearance which is typical of Snake Eagles. Cuckoo-Hawk also has a slight crest, but Cuckoo-Hawk perches on really short legs, with only its feet visible, and its wing tips extend almost to the end of the tail. The white tips on the primaries also point towards Southern Banded Snake Eagle. Photo taken at Bonamanzi, KZN.
#8Chestnut-backed Sparrowlark (female)
- Chestnut coloured upperparts, and dark belly patch are diagnostic. Photo taken at Satara, Kruger National Park.