Bird, bug, butterfly and a wild variety of photos from Belarus, Cyprus, Finland, Greece, Ireland, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Scotland and Spain by Irish wildlife photographer Patrick J. O'Keeffe and invited guests

Showing posts with label passerine. Show all posts
Showing posts with label passerine. Show all posts

Tuesday, 12 May 2020

EUROPEAN GREENFINCH [Male] (Carduelis chloris) Gile's Quay, Cooley Peninsula, Co. Louth


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The European Greenfinch (Chloris chloris) is a small passerine of the finch family Fringillidae which is in the genus Chlori. It has a widespread distribution in Europe, northern Africa and southwestern Asia. It  also occurs as an introduced species in parts of Australia, New Zealand, Argentina and Uruguay. Before the onset of winter, northern populations migrate to the more temperate areas of its range. In recent times, there has been a dramatic decline in numbers due to the spread of trichomonosis disease that effects the digestive system which results in mortality.

Patrick J. O'Keeffe / Raw Birds

Friday, 8 May 2020

EUROPEAN STONECHAT (Saxicola rubicola subspecies S. r. hibernans) female at Gile's Quay, Cooley Peninsula, Co. Louth


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The European Stonechat (Saxicola rubicola) is of the chat family Muscicapidae which is in the genus Saxicola. Preferred habitats include rough grassland, sand dunes and heathland where it is typically seen perched on brambles, gorse or shrubs within the breeding area. 
In the temperate part of its range, nesting commences in late March and up to three broods are raised. It is a partial migrant. Populations from the colder regions move to spend the winter in southern Europe and northern Africa. Successive hard winters, as was the case in 2009/10 and 2010/11 caused severe losses in the mainly sedentary northwestern populations
There are two subspecies generally recognised, Saxicola rubicola rubicola occurs in central, eastern and southern Europe as well as northern Morocco and southeastern Turkey. Saxicola rubicola hibernans occurs in northwestern Europe including Britain, Ireland, France and Norway.
   
Patrick J. O'Keeffe / Raw Birds

Thursday, 30 April 2020

EUROPEAN STONECHAT (Saxicola rubicola subspecies.S. r. hibernans) male at Gile's Quay, Cooley Peninsula, Co. Louth


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The European Stonechat (Saxicola rubicola) is of the chat family Muscicapidae which is in the genus Saxicola. Preferred habitats include rough grassland, sand dunes and heathland where it is typically seen perched on brambles, gorse or shrubs within the breeding area. 
In the temperate part of its range, nesting commences in late March and up to three broods are raised. It is a partial migrant. Populations from the colder regions move to spend the winter in southern Europe and northern Africa. Successive hard winters, as was the case in 2009/10 and 2010/11 caused severe losses in the mainly sedentary northwestern populations
There are two subspecies generally recognised, Saxicola rubicola rubicola occurs in central, eastern and southern Europe as well as northern Morocco and southeastern Turkey. Saxicola rubicola hibernans occurs in northwestern Europe including Britain, Ireland, France and Norway.
   
Patrick J. O'Keeffe / Raw Birds

Thursday, 11 April 2019

EUROPEAN STARLING (Sturnus vulgaris) male, Port Oriel Harbour, Clogherhead, Co. Louth, Ireland


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 The European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris) is of the family Sturnidae which is in the genus Sturnus.

Monday, 24 October 2016

ITALIAN SPARROW [Male] (Passer italiae) Palaiochora Harbour, Palaiochora, Crete, Greece


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The Italian Sparrow (Passer italiae) or Cisalpine Sparrow is a small perching bird in the family Passeridae which is in the genus Passer. It is very closely related to and is intermediate in appearance between House Sparrow (Passer domesticus) and Spanish Sparrow (Passer hispaniolensis). Some authorities treat it as a subspecies of House Sparrow but recent DNA research strongly supports its status as a full species. The Italian Sparrow occurs in Italy and small populations are also found in the adjoining countries of Austria, France, Slovenia and Switzerland. It is also resident on the Greek island of Crete and other Mediterranean islands including Corsica and Malta. 


Text © Patrick J. O'Keeffe / Raw Birds.com

Friday, 14 October 2016

WHINCHAT [Male] (Saxicola rubetra) Pelekaniotikos River, Koundoura, Crete, Greece



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The Whinchat (Saxicola rubetra) is a small migratory passerine in the family Muscicapidae and is closely related to the Old World flycatchers. It is a summer breeding resident in Europe and in parts of Western Asia which winters in sub Saharan Africa. Small numbers also winter in north western Africa. The autumn migration south commences from late August. By early April the following year the first of the returning migrants begin to reappear in southern Europe. 

Saturday, 30 July 2016

COMMON LINNET (Linaria cannabina subspecies L. c. mediterranea) male, Moni Gouvernetou Monastery, Akrotiri Peninsula, Crete, Greece


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The Linnet (Linaria cannabina) or Common Linnet is of the family Fringillidae which is in the genus Linaria.
 It derives its name from its fondness for the seeds of the flax plant which is used to make linen. This small finch occurs in Europe as well as Western Asia but is absent from northern latitudes and has a limited distribution in North West Africa and the Middle East. 

There are seven subspecies :
  • Linaria c. autochthona - occurs in Scotland     
  • L. c. cannabina - occurs in the rest of Britain, Ireland also northern Europe, eastwards to central Siberia. It is a partial migrant, wintering in north Africa and southwest Asia
  • L. c. bella - occurs in Middle East, eastwards to Mongolia and northwestern China
  • L. c. mediterranea - occurs on the Iberian Peninsula, Italy, Greece, northwest Africa and on the Mediterranean islands
  • L. c. guentheri - occurs on Madeira Island
  • L. c. meadewaldoi - occurs on the Western Canary Islands (El Hierro, La Gomera, La Palma, Tenerife and Gran Canaria)
  • L. c. harterti - occurs on the Eastern Canary Islands (Lanzarote and Fuerteventura)
Reference: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Common_linnet

Sunday, 24 July 2016

CRESTED LARK (Galerida cristata) Akrotiri Peninsula, Chania, Crete, Greece


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The Crested Lark (Galerida cristata) is a small songbird and is one of 82 species of lark in the family Alaudidae which is in the genus Galerida. It is commonly found across most of the temperate regions of Europe and Asia but is absent from northwest and northern Europe as well as northern Asia. It also occurs in the northern half of  Africa as far south as Niger. It is sedentary by nature and is only a rare vagrant outside the normal range.

Text © Patrick J. O'Keeffe / Raw Birds.com

Thursday, 21 July 2016

EUROPEAN STONECHAT (Saxicola rubicola subspecies S. r. rubicola) female at Techniti Limni Agia, Agia Lake, Crete, Greece


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The European Stonechat (Saxicola rubicola) is of the chat family Muscicapidae which is in the genus Saxicola. Preferred habitats include rough grassland, sand dunes and heathland where it is typically seen perched on brambles, gorse or shrubs within the breeding area. 
In the temperate part of its range, nesting commences in late March and up to three broods are raised. It is a partial migrant. Populations from the colder regions move to spend the winter in southern Europe and northern Africa. Successive hard winters, as was the case in 2009/10 and 2010/11 caused severe losses in the mainly sedentary northwestern populations
There are two subspecies generally recognised, Saxicola rubicola rubicola occurs in central, eastern and southern Europe as well as northern Morocco and southeastern Turkey. Saxicola rubicola hibernans occurs in northwestern Europe including Britain, Ireland, France and Norway.
   
Patrick J. O'Keeffe / Raw Birds

Saturday, 2 July 2016

COMMON CHAFFINCH [Female] (Fringilla coelebs subspecies F. c. schiebeli) Agia Marina, Crete, Greece


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The Common Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs) or Eurasian Chaffinch is a small tree nesting finch in the family Fringillidae which is in the genus Fringilla. It is found throughout Europe but is absent from Iceland and also occurs in Western Asia as well as parts of North Africa. The northern populations are migratory and winter in the southern part of it's range. There are many subspecies recognised including Fringilla coelebs schiebeli which occurs on Crete and also in Southern Greece and Turkey. 

Text © Patrick J. O'Keeffe / Raw Birds.com

Tuesday, 21 June 2016

SPOTTED FLYCATCHER (Muscicapa striata) Pelekaniotikos River, Koundoura, Crete, Greece


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The Spotted Flycatcher (Muscicapa striata) is a small Old World passerine in the family Muscicapidae which is in the genus Muscicapa. It is the commonest and the most widespread flycatcher found in Europe and western Asia. It is one of five species of migratory flycatcher which are summer breeding residents in Europe. In late spring, it returns from its wintering areas in southern Africa and southwestern Asia. Its preferred habit is open deciduous woodland. Main prey items include small flying invertebrates and caterpillars. By September with its food supply in decline, the return migration south begins.  

Text © www.rawbirds.com

Saturday, 18 June 2016

(EASTERN) SUBALPINE WARBLER (Sylvia cantillans subspecies S. c. albistriata) Moni Gouvernetou Monastery, Akrotiri Peninsula, Crete, Greece


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The Subalpine Warbler (Sylvia cantillans) is a migratory passerine in the family Sylviidae which is in the genus Sylvia. It breed in Northwest Africa, Southern Europe and Western Turkey. It feeds on small invertebrates as well as soft fruits. In the autumn, it migrates south to spend the winter in sub Saharan Africa. 
There are four subspecies which are divided into two groups: 
  •  The Western Subalpine Warbler includes both S. c. inornata which breeds in northwest Africa and S. c. iberiae which breeds on the Iberian Peninsula, in southeastern France and northwest Italy.
  • The Eastern Subalpine Warbler includes both S. c. cantillans which breeds in the southern half of Italy and S. c. albistriata which breeds in the Western Balkans, Greece (including the island of Crete) and Western Turkey. 
 The Moltoni's Warbler (Sylvia subalpina) which breeds in Mallorca, Corsica, Sardinia and parts of northern Italy is a closely related species that was previously treated as a fifth subspecies S. c. moltonii. In northern Italy there is zone of intergradation between Moltoni's Warbler and Eastern Subalpine Warbler. 

Text © rawbirds.com 

Map of the breeding ranges of all five former taxa of the Subalpine Warbler complex. The grey zone in the north of Italy is of the intergradation between subalpina and cantillans. The points are locations with proven cases of sympatry. The map constructed by Lars Svensson from Shirihai et al (2001), Brambilla et al (2006), and comments from M. Ullman (© Lars Svensson).

Source:
Svensson, L. (2013a): A taxonomic revision of the Subalpine Warbler Sylvia cantillans. Bulletin of the British Ornithologists’ Club 133: 240-248.
Svensson, L. (2013b): Subalpine Warbler variation and taxonomy. British Birds106: 651-668.

Saturday, 11 June 2016

ITALIAN SPARROW [Female] (Passer italiae) Palaiochora Harbour, Palaiochora, Crete, Greece


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The Italian Sparrow (Passer italiae) or Cisalpine Sparrow is a small perching bird in the family Passeridae which is in the genus Passer. It is very closely related to and is intermediate in appearance between House Sparrow (Passer domesticus) and Spanish Sparrow (Passer hispaniolensis). Some authorities treat it as a subspecies of House Sparrow but recent DNA research strongly supports its status as a full species. The Italian Sparrow occurs in Italy and small populations are also found in the adjoining countries of Austria, France, Slovenia and Switzerland. It is also resident on the Greek island of Crete and other Mediterranean islands including Corsica and Malta. 


Text © Patrick J. O'Keeffe / Raw Birds.com

Saturday, 14 May 2016

(EASTERN) BLACK EARED WHEATEAR [Male] (Oenanthe hispanica subspecies O. h. melanoleuca) Cape Kutri, Kisamos district, Crete, Greece


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The Black-eared Wheatear (Oenanthe hispanica) is a migratory passerine in the family Muscicapidae which is in the genus Oenanthe. Two subspecies are recognised, the Western Black-eared Wheatear (Oenanthe hispanica hispanica) breeds in Northwest Africa, the Iberian Peninsula, Southeast France, Italy, Slovenia and Croatia. and the Eastern Black-eared Wheatear (Oenanthe hispanica melanoleuca) occurs in the rest of the Balkans eastwards to the Caspian Sea and south as far as Iran. Some males of both subspecies are of the pale throat-ed form. It winters in sub Saharan Africa.

Thursday, 28 April 2016

COMMON CHAFFINCH (Fringilla coelebs subspecies F. c. schiebeli) male, Agia Marina, Crete, Greece


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The Common Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs) is a small tree nesting finch in the family Fringillidae which is in the genus Fringilla. It is commonly found throughout Europe (but is absent from Iceland), Western Asia and parts of North Africa. The northern populations are migratory and winters in the southern part of the range. There are many subspecies recognised including Fringilla coelebs schiebeli which occurs on Crete as well as in Southern Greece and Turkey. 
 
Patrick J. O'Keeffe / Raw Birds

Tuesday, 26 April 2016

WESTERN (ROMANIAN) YELLOW WAGTAIL (Male) (Motacilla flava subspecies M. f. dombrowskii) Palaiochora Harbour, Palaiochora, Crete, Greece


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The Western Yellow Wagtail (Motacilla flava) is of the family Motacillidae, which includes longclaws, pipits and wagtails. It is a summer resident in the temperate regions of Western Asia and Europe which migrates south in early autumn to winter in southern Asia and Africa. Up to 20 subspecies are recognised including the Romanian Yellow Wagtail (Motacilla flava dombrowskii).

Thursday, 21 April 2016

WOOD WARBLER (Phylloscopus sibilatrix) Moni Gouvernetou Monastery, Akrotiri Peninsula, Crete, Greece


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The Wood Warbler (Phylloscopus sibilatrix) is an Old World warbler in the family Phylloscopidae which is in the genus Phylloscopus. It is a summer resident which breeds in the temperate regions of Europe and Western Asia. This long distant migrant arrives back from its wintering areas in sub Saharan in mid-April. The preferred habit of this insectivorous species is mature oak woodland with mainly open under story. Up to two broods are raised by this ground nesting leaf warbler. By late August the breeding areas are vacated and the return migration south begins
 Text © www.rawbirds.com

Sunday, 3 April 2016

WHITE WAGTAIL (Motacilla alba subspecies M. a. yarrellii) Agia Marina, Crete, Greece


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The White Wagtail (Motacilla alba) is a small ground nesting passerine and along with the longclaws and pipits is in the family Motacillidae which is in the genus Motacilla. This species is the commonest and most widespread wagtail that is found in Eurasia. It also breeds in Morocco in North Africa and there is a small Alaskan breeding population in North America. The northern populations are migratory and winters in Southern Europe, Africa and Southern Asia. Up to 11 sub-species are recognised, including the Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii) which breeds in Britain, Ireland and the near-continent.

Patrick J. O'Keeffe / Raw Birds

PIED WAGTAIL (Motacilla alba subspecies M. a. yarrellii) male at Broadmeadow Estuary, Swords, Fingal, Swords, Co. Dublin, Ireland

       

    White Wagtail (Montacella alba) subspecies distribution map          

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CC BY-SA 3.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0>, via Wikimedia Commons

Wednesday, 2 March 2016

EUROPEAN STONECHAT (Saxicola rubicola subspecies S. r. rubicola) male at Techniti Limni Agia, Agia Lake, Agia, Crete, Greece


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The European Stonechat (Saxicola rubicola) is of the chat family Muscicapidae which is in the genus Saxicola. Preferred habitats include rough grassland, sand dunes and heathland where it is typically seen perched on brambles, gorse or shrubs within the breeding area. 
In the temperate part of its range, nesting commences in late March and up to three broods are raised. It is a partial migrant. Populations from the colder regions move to spend the winter in southern Europe and northern Africa. Successive hard winters, as was the case in 2009/10 and 2010/11 caused severe losses in the mainly sedentary northwestern populations
There are two subspecies generally recognised, Saxicola rubicola rubicola occurs in central, eastern and southern Europe as well as northern Morocco and southeastern Turkey. Saxicola rubicola hibernans occurs in northwestern Europe including Britain, Ireland, France and Norway.
   
Patrick J. O'Keeffe / Raw Birds

Wednesday, 24 February 2016

RED RUMPED SWALLOW (Cecropis daurica) Techniti Limni Agia, Agia Lake, Agia, Crete, Greece


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The Red-rumped Swallow (Cecropis daurica) is a migratory member of the family Hirundinidae which is in the genus Cecropis. World wide, there are 74 species of Hirundines (Swallows and Martins). In addition, the only known record of the Red Sea Cliff Swallow (Hirundo perdita) was of one found dead at Sanganeb Lighthouse, Sudan in May 1984. 
 It is mainly a summer resident in the temperate regions of southern Europe, Morocco in northwest Africa as well as parts of western, central and eastern Asia. Its range extends from the Iberian Peninsula eastwards to Japan. There are also non migratory populations resident in tropical Africa and in South East Asia. 
 This insectivorous species feeds exclusively on small flying insects, mainly flies and midges. Outside of the breeding season, it is a very rare but annual overshooting spring and autumn migrant to northern Europe. 
 The European, Moroccan and northern Asian populations migrate south in the autumn to spend the winter in sub Saharan Africa, the India sub-continent and northern Australia. 

Text © Patrick J. O'Keeffe / Raw Birds.com