Help To Identify A Bird

  OTT_B 11:03 29 Jun 2014

Hi Folks, long time no see - not posted for a while, but do still pop round from time to time!

I was out and about yesterday testing a camera lens when I came across a bird, but am struggling to identify it. Image quality is quite poor - the bird was a long way away and it's handheld at 560mm.....and it turns out the lens with extender isn't that great either!

Can anyone tell me what it is? Guessing a red kite, but don't really know!

Thanks for any help!

Bird to identify


1]: [click here

  BRYNIT 11:49 29 Jun 2014

Difficult due to the picture quality but it could be a Peregrine Falcon CLICK HERE

  Forum Editor 11:51 29 Jun 2014

I think you saw a female kestrel.

  OTT_B 12:07 29 Jun 2014

Interesting possibilities.

I looked at a red kite as an option, but discounted it due to the shape of the tail feathers - V shaped, rather then fan shaped for the kestrel and peregrine (truly awful photo here).

Not sure if the shape of the tail feathers is that consistent?

  mbc 15:49 29 Jun 2014

Red kite does have a forked tail.

  morddwyd 19:58 29 Jun 2014

Any guesses as to comparative size? Also habitat would help.

The trouble is that this time of tear there are so many juveniles about, of all species, none of them in adult plumage.

  OTT_B 20:24 29 Jun 2014

Thanks for all your responses.

morddwyd: Habitat (or at least where I saw 2 of them), was over mostly open farmland with lakes nearby. Hard to gauge size. The person I was with said it was too small to be a kite, and the head colour would normally be white.

mbc: Not sure what I was trying to type in my earlier post! The V shape tail is what led me towards thinking it might have been a kite!

I'm assuming that the tail wouldn't fan out at any point (e.g. when landing)?

I've been out today with tripod in the hopes of seeing one again, but it was not to be.

  sunnystaines 07:52 30 Jun 2014

its a red kite has a distintive tail.

  carver 08:07 30 Jun 2014

Going off subject but what lens and camera were you using because the image is very bad and I'm not trying to be funny when I say that.

I realise it's hand held and quite a distance but rather intrigued as to the lens,


  OTT_B 09:27 30 Jun 2014

carver: Lens is a Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS USM, with a 1.4x extender. The lens itself does suffer from CA, and combined with the convertor it's all but unusable in high contrast environments. That, combined with AF not working with the extender and no time to prepare the shots, the pictures are pretty shoddy. I was out yesterday with a tripod and without extender - pictures were quite usable....but no mystery bird! In less contrasty shots the lens (and photographer!) has produced some good results.

  Belatucadrus 10:56 30 Jun 2014

I'd go with a juvenile Red Kite the V tail is right but it hasn't yet aquired the adult grey head feathers.

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