Having read through Parts 1 and 2, here’s something to practice on!
Start the video (below) and pause or replay it when necessary. The video starts by showing a Little (Striated) Heron to give you some idea of size. See how you get on at putting each bird into one of the 5 groups (Part 2) or even naming them beyond that.
1. (00.00) Striated/Little Heron
A few things to look for are:
1. If it’s looking for food, how would you describe its actions (e.g. continuous pecking, stop, go, peck, etc)?
2. If the Little Heron is size L (See Part 2), what size would you judge each bird (e.g. S, M, L or XL)?
3. What’s the shape and length of the bill (e.g. straight, <1x head length; down-curved, 1.5x head length, etc)? Any colour visible (e.g. coloured base, black tip; all black, etc)?
4. How long are the legs (e.g. long – >1x body height; medium = body height; short – <1x body height, etc)? Any colours (black, grey, orange, etc)? NB On this video, some legs look a bit yellower than in real life!
5. What shape is the body (e.g. long and slender, short and fat, upright, horizontal, etc)?
6. Don’t worry about plumage too much, but note any obvious patterns or patches of light and dark (e.g. complete or partial breastband, dark ‘mask’, dark on bend of wing, line through eye and eyebrow, etc).
Once you’ve done as much as you can, if you want, send me your best guesses and questions and I’ll do my best to let you know how you got on! This isn’t a competition by the way – so don’t send in your answers if this is ‘easy’ for you!
SPOILER ALERT! I’ve added a ‘cheat sheet’ with the answers in the Replies section.