Brown SongLark now a Grassbird

To: "Mark Young" <>, "Nikolas Haass" <>
Subject: Brown SongLark now a Grassbird
From: "Greg and Val Clancy" <>
Date: Mon, 17 Dec 2012 12:50:40 +1100

Your bird matches the painting in HANZAB Volume 7 Part B opposite page 1720 of a juvenile Little Grassbird, including the pale edging to the secondaries/tertials and the lack of marking on the throat. I have photos of adult and juvenile Tawny Grassbirds that I could send you off list. They have longer tails and are more rufous in the plumage. The calls are a good way to distinguish them as well as the Little Grassbird has a mournful two-note plaintive song and the Tawny has a much more excited and rich display flight and bomb-dropping song as well as 'chuck chuck ' type contact calls.

Dr Greg. P. Clancy
Ecologist and Birding-wildlife Guide
PO Box 63 Coutts Crossing NSW 2460
0266493153  0429601960

-----Original Message----- From: Mark Young
Sent: Sunday, December 16, 2012 1:11 PM
To: Nikolas Haass
Cc: Birding Aus
Subject: Brown SongLark now a Grassbird

Hi Nikolas,

I use the terms of calls and song interchangeably. That's very poor of
myself I know. But what I heard would be better described as a song. Now
that I think about it, I didn't see this bird make any noise, but I
assumed the noise/song I heard came from this bird as I could see no other
bird nearby.


On Sunday, December 16, 2012, Nikolas Haass wrote:

Looking at the last picture alone I would say Little Grassbird. In one of
your earlier pictures there is also some streaking on the lower flanks. You are saying call but what you are describing seems to be rather the song and
not a call? Can you describe that a bit more detailed?



Nikolas Haass
 <javascript:_e({}, 'cvml', ;>
Sydney, NSW
*From:* Mark and Amanda Young <<javascript:_e({}, 'cvml', ;>
*To:* 'Birding Aus' < <javascript:_e({}, 'cvml',
*Sent:* Saturday, December 15, 2012 8:20 PM
*Subject:* Re: [Birding-Aus] Brown SongLark now a Grassbird

G'day everyone,

Thanks to all those people who've replied about this bird. Most people have
said it's a Tawny Grassbird, but a few think it might be a Little

There are a still points about this bird that have me confused. The white
fringing on the tertials(?), the slight dark streaking to the crown, (as
evident in the second image) and the dark line running through the eye seem
to suggest Little Grassbird.
But the lack of streaking on the breast leads it towards a Tawny Grassbird.
Is it possible this might be a young bird, or a hybrid of the 2?

When I saw this bird it was at the bottom of a small gully feeding in
between some grasses. Not the sort of habitat I've seen Little Grassbirds
when I've seen them (which is no more than 10 times all up).
What attracted me to it was it's call. I was looking in that area for
Pipit's which are usually around there, when I heard the bird. I remember
having an attractive call with multiple notes. Sorry about the vagueness on
that point, but I don't remember anymore about it's call.

Here's a link to another image showing the crown and back. I don't have a
better photo of the breast that I could post.


-----Original Message-----
From: Mark and Amanda Young <javascript:_e({}, 'cvml', ;>]

Sent: Friday, 14 December 2012 7:13 PM
To: 'Birding Aus'
Subject: RE: Brown Songlark

G'aday everyone,

I saw this small bird this morning at Long Reef Golf Course this morning. I
wasn't too sure what it was when I saw it in the field. I thought it might
have been some unusual grassbird, but that didn't seem quite right. The
underside and head reminded a bit of a Reed-warbler, but those upper
feathers didn't seem right either for it to be a Reed-warbler.

Now that I've gotten home and had a chance to look it up in Morcombe's, it
looks very similar to a female Brown Songlark. But I've only ever seen a
male Brown Songlark, and that was a few years ago, so I'm would love to get
the opinion of others as to what they think this bird might be.




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