Tuesday, 21 July 2015

FEATHERS: the unknown - some help needed here please!

Task: to ID all prey remains at a series of peregrine nest sites. I have got most of them (to follow) but these few have me baffled. Any ideas much appreciated.

This small passerine has plain PP with converts that have interesting with faint though specific markings on them (see enlarged image below). This marking rules out pied wagtail and the PP too plain for other common spp like medow pipit or skylark. And the largest PP here is 80mm.

Ok, these two feathers I am pretty sure are PP from red-legged partridge though the size confuses me a little - these are 133mm and 117mm.

This gathering of feathers is likely from more than one species. I had thought some rather yucky remains were fieldfare; the PP here is 122mm. The tail feather is 114 and the secondary is 94mm. The secondary is mistle thrush I reckon. But the other two? And the breast feathers..they should clinch it.

Fairly sure the two on the left are tawny owl breast feathers. These would be some way from their normal haunt although I would still go with an owl scavenging at the peregrine plucks rather than being the subject of one; size 40mm. The other two feathers are very distinctive: 52mm 43mm; starling? mistle thrush?....