Can anyone identify this bird for me, please? I was photographing the moon through my telescope in the South of England a couple of days ago just before 9pm and captured a silhouette of a bird passing in front. It appeared to have a long bill but not long legs, and its wingbeats were about 6 times a second. To give an idea of scale, if the wingspan was around 60cm it would have been close to 500m altitude and 1500m away (although I suspect it was smaller and therefore closer and lower). I did not hear any calls and only saw one, though of course I was observing a very small area of the sky.
I would say there is more than a hint of woodcock about the overall shape and bill, as well as lack of long legs.
In reply to NigelH576:
NigelH576 said:I've had Woodcock suggested before, but the problem with that is that if this bird was that size, it would have been flying at about 500m, whereas (if my limited understanding is correct), they fly far lower, more like 50 feet.
"50 feet" sounds like an American website reference. Better to use local sites both for i.d. and reference IMO.
50 feet is a low height and a recipe for extinction if migrating long distances in the dark.
In reply to Mr. B:
In reply to rspbailey:
We spend 90% of net income on conservation, public education and advocacy
The RSPB is a member of BirdLife International. Find out more about the partnership
© The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) is a registered charity: England and Wales no. 207076, Scotland no. SC037654
Accepting all non-essential cookies helps us to personalise your experience
These cookies are required for basic web functions
Allow us to collect anonymised performance data
Allow us to personalise your experience