Saturday, 12 October 2019

More about Grey Wagtails

In my last blog I told you about the Grey Wagtail that visited my newly made garden pond (which used to be a bath). See The making of a pond and an unexpected visitor. He/she has been back at least twice since then.

In that blog I didn't put a picture of a Grey Wagtail but yesterday when visiting friends I saw a card they had got with a nice painting of a Grey Wagtail on it, and a little bit of information about the species on the back and I thought I should share it here. It's by an artist called Madeleine Floyd and I really like her style.

The bird in the picture is an adult male, with his black throat patch and completely yellow underparts. The one that came to our garden was an immature bird and so it lacked the black throat and only had yellow the very bottom of its belly and underneath the tail. It also had a lovely peachy wash on its throat and breast, with the rest of its underparts being off-white.

In case you find it hard to read the writing on the back of the card in the picture below, what it says is "Grey Wagtail (Motacilla cinerea)  - The largely resident and elegant Grey Wagtail owns the longest tail of the Wagtail family and has black and smoky grey upperparts with a sulphur yellow chest. This attractive palette contributes to an air of a gentleman. His call can be loud and sharp but his song is made up of chirruping flutey notes and fast trills and warbles. He is happiest living beside a mountain stream, enjoying the rocky terrain, but can make his home in other waterside locations as long as there is fresh running water nearby, from which he can catch water insects and mayflies to feast on"

picture ©Madeleine Floyd

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