BIRD 4

Bird Watching (UK) - - May Id Challenge -

The first im­pres­sion this bird gives is be­ing typ­i­cally a ‘swal­low’ in shape; just look at those long outer tail ‘stream­ers’! But there is some­thing not quite ‘typ­i­cal’ about this par­tic­u­lar swal­low. Firstly, it has a pale throat which looks like it is the same colour as the breast and belly (a warm buff colour). But Swal­lows have dark red throats. Then, the cheeks and the side of the neck are orange-red. And the feath­er­ing at the base of the tail (the un­der­tail coverts) are black, not whitish. All these fea­tures should point to­wards this bird be­ing a Red-rumped Swal­low. The only ob­vi­ous ID fea­ture not show­ing here is the red­dish-orange-buff rump. Red-rumped Swal­lows are reg­u­lar but rare spring vis­i­tors to the UK.

KEY FEA­TURES †Typ­i­cal swal­low struc­ture †Orange-buff un­der­parts and side of head/neck; pale throat †Black un­der­tail coverts †Long tail stream­ers

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