Thursday, January 31, 2013

Dipper at EGP

Photographed last week, where were you Mike?
Not that you can tell from its plumage but this individual is a male Dipper, it sang and chortled for a couple of minutes whilst I observed it .
Last one, just for the record a Kingfisher was nearby, my first of the year in the area.


Steve Blacksmith said...

Good pictures, David. The loudest and most prolonged singing I've heard from them is on a couple of occasions when there has been some territorial rivalry going on.

Do you agree you can hear its relationship to the Wren when it sings?

David Tattersley said...

Thanks Steve, both songs are quite rhythmical and very similar in pitch, and there are obvious similarities in the shape of the two species but I believe that more recent study suggests that the apparent similarities of wrens and dippers is more to do with 'convergent evolution' rather than ancestry.
One thing that I find odd is why Dippers sing relatively 'quietly' despite the fact that they spend most of the time around fast flowing water.
It would appear that Dippers are more closely related to Thrushes rather than Wrens as previously believed, all fascinating stuff!