Ruff

All topics and discussions with reference to birds in all SANParks
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Johan van Rensburg
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Ruff

Unread post by Johan van Rensburg »

The Ruff, Philomachus pugnax is a medium-sized wader.

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Their breeding habitat is bogs, marshes and wet meadows with short vegetation in northern Europe and Russia. They breed from May to August with males gathering in suitable areas and females nesting solitarily or in semi-colonial groups. Ruff are migratory, wintering in southern and western Europe, Africa and India. They travel on a broad front across Europe. The species arrives to “over-winter” in southern Africa late-July and August, returning to northern Europe and Russia from late-March to mid-May. The species migrates in large flocks of hundreds or thousands of individuals and forms huge dense groups on its wintering grounds. During the time spent here the species occupies the muddy margins of brackish, saline and alkaline lakes, ponds, pools, rivers, marshes and food-plains, as well as freshly mown or grazed short-sward grasslands and wheat fields, usually roosting at night in the shallow waters of lake shores.

These birds forage in a variety of habitats such as salt-pans, marshlands, lagoons and wet grasslands and soft mud, probing or picking up food by sight. They mainly eat flies, water-bugs, mayflies and grasshoppers, small crustaceans, spiders, small molluscs, annelid worms, frogs, small fish and green plant material and wild plant seed.
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Rusty Justy
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Re: Identification Help - General Birds

Unread post by Rusty Justy »

Hi Again,

That appears to be your Ruff(Philomachus pugnax)
Haven't seen one in the park before, yet!!!...Nice Shots!!

The paler bird(sometimes white)....Is a variant colouring, you get in some non-br males :) But both the same species.

Justin
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Mgoddard
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Re: Identification Help - General Birds

Unread post by Mgoddard »

And this one seen at Sunset Dam today...

I have searched my Sasol and Roberts Guides, but the bird is not jumping out at me....

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Lizet Grobbelaar
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Re: Identification Help - General Birds

Unread post by Lizet Grobbelaar »

Mgoddard,
This is a Ruff, moulting out of its breeding plumage. It has obviously just returned from its Northern Hemisphere breeding grounds - hence the black feathers. In full breeding plumage the whole head and breast up to the belly becomes black.
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deefstes
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Re: Identification Help - General Birds

Unread post by deefstes »

Batmad wrote:And a sure sign that spring's here :dance: :dance: :dance:

One Ruff doth not a summer make :D
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Batmad
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Re: Identification Help - General Birds

Unread post by Batmad »

But one ruff doth a spring make :twisted:


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francoisd
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Re: Ruff

Unread post by francoisd »

Found this one at a non SANParks park on the cape south coast on Monday. It still has some of it's breeding feathers so must be a recent arrival.

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Justinponder2505
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Re: Identification Help - General Birds

Unread post by Justinponder2505 »

I saw these two at Pan 2 at Strandfontuin Sewage Works in Cape Town on Friday. My guess is male and female Ruff, but I’m not two sure...???
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Ludwig
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Re: Identification Help - General Birds

Unread post by Ludwig »

Hello,

again I have difficulties to identify a bird.

Seen in May on Sunset Dam - Lower Sabie.

What kind of sandpiper is it? A common sandpiper?

I have some more pictures if this can help.

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ross hawkins
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Re: Identification Help - General Birds

Unread post by ross hawkins »

A Ruff indeed
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