Eastern Whipbird eye colour.

To: "" <>
Subject: Eastern Whipbird eye colour.
From: Graeme Chapman <>
Date: Thu, 14 Dec 2017 04:25:41 +0000
This morning when updating my website I noticed something odd. The bird in the 
latest picture I added had pale (cream) eyes.

So I went looking, and sure enough Birds Australia (Birds in Backyards) and the 
Australian Museum both state adult "eyes pale cream".

However who else gets it right? Only one of the fieldguides  gets even close, 
Peter Slater's. The latest CSIRO guide cleverly avoids the issue altogether.

Even HANZAB gets it wrong. It  has a contradiction between the initial 
description and the "soft parts" section.

Most of the published pictures labelled "adult" show a bird with red-brown or 
dark brown eyes. Clearly these are all are all immatures.

Interestingly, Grey-crowned Babblers, a not so distant relation, also develop 
similar pale eyes with age - it takes four years.

So my question is, how long does it take for an Eastern Whipbird take to 
develop pale cream eyes? I suspect it will be four years.

There are published photographs of them at nests where the eyes look not so 
pale so they obviously sometimes breed when not fully mature.


Graeme Chapman
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