Rock or water pipit

Is this a rock pipit or a water pipit, Photo taken at Barns Ness in East Lothian

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  • Hi Martin, I'm not an expert so can't offer you a categorical ID but all I can add is that I've only seen Water Pipit during the winter months (I believe they arrive mid autumn and stay till springtime) so I'd be going with Rock Pipit if your photo was taken recently, as the legs and bill are also quite dark. I've been lucky enough to see both species in UK. See what the experts suggest as I'll be interested to know too.


    Regards, Hazel 

    "Each kindness shown to birds or men is sure to flutter back again" 

  • Rock pipit for me - too dark underneath and not fine enough flanking for a Water Pipit in my opinion, though I'm no great expert.




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  • I'd go with rock pipit too. The water pipit eyestripe is reasonably bold and can be seen from some distance. Winter water pipits are quite pale too. Here's an intermediate plumage state example:

    Happiness is an adult Hen Harrier that hasn't been shot, trapped or poisoned. Happiness is a rare commodity in the English uplands.