Readers’ wildlife photos

Bruce Lyon has returned from Europe with some swell pictures, including many birds. His notes are indented:


  1. ThyroidPlanet
    Posted October 29, 2018 at 8:05 am | Permalink




    this RWP’s got it all!

  2. Posted October 29, 2018 at 8:33 am | Permalink

    I am one of those birders who has trudged up various hills around Europe and has yet to see a wallcreeper!

    Great pics.

  3. mikeyc
    Posted October 29, 2018 at 9:02 am | Permalink

    Interesting work with the accentors. Cute little birdies too.

  4. W.T. Effingham
    Posted October 29, 2018 at 9:04 am | Permalink

    Beautiful images. The side by side example of convergent plumage is very interesting.

    • Diane G
      Posted October 29, 2018 at 10:55 pm | Permalink

      Indeed! Right down to the small dark patch at the alula area.

  5. Posted October 29, 2018 at 9:30 am | Permalink

    Wonderful pictures and stories!
    I can’t figure why the snow bunting and snow finch might have similar display colors. Could it be they both have the white + dark colors as camouflage in patchy snow cover?

    • Bruce Lyon
      Posted October 29, 2018 at 6:20 pm | Permalink

      I have no idea. Note that the strikingly patterned wing and tail are mostly hidden when the bird is perched. Crypsis when perched becomes a very conspicuous pattern in flight.

      • Diane G
        Posted October 29, 2018 at 10:59 pm | Permalink

        Interesting similarity in bill color, too.

  6. David Coxill
    Posted October 29, 2018 at 10:14 am | Permalink

    According to a wildlife prog i saw on Dunnock’s a male will wait until a pair has mated and then remove the previous male’s ,precious bodily fluid and then mate with the female .

    • Bruce Lyon
      Posted October 29, 2018 at 6:22 pm | Permalink

      Nick Davies, the guy I mention in the post, did his work. He discovered the cloaca pecking behavior and noticed that when a male pecks a female’s cloaca, it results in her rejecting any fluid and sperm she has in her reproductive tract

  7. rickflick
    Posted October 29, 2018 at 11:16 am | Permalink

    Nice shots. Certainly a well rewarded outing in the alpine habitat. Thanks.

  8. Glenda Palmer
    Posted October 29, 2018 at 11:53 am | Permalink

    Great photos and interesting notes. Thank you.

  9. Michael Fisher
    Posted October 29, 2018 at 2:56 pm | Permalink

    The Pic du Midi Observatory tower is used for lightning studies
    I don’t think the tower is as old as the rest of the site

  10. Mark R.
    Posted October 29, 2018 at 3:16 pm | Permalink

    Wonderful photos and interesting biology to boot. I also enjoyed the bright orange and pale green lichen on the high altitude rocks.

  11. Diane G
    Posted October 29, 2018 at 11:07 pm | Permalink

    Wow, my idea of a great trip! SUCH cool birds! Love the Wallcreeper. Its wings remind me of flash colors in reptiles.

    Beautifully patterned Accentors, and, more subtly, the Dunnock. (Beautiful pics, BTW! All of them.)

    The convergent evolution shown in so many species of North American and European birds would make a great pro-evolution poster.

  12. Posted November 10, 2018 at 7:14 am | Permalink

    Beautiful birds!

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