|[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note|
|The African Stonechat (Saxicola torquata) |
(En. Stonechat, Da. Sortstrubet Bynkefugl, Du.
Roodborsttapuit, Fi. Mustapäätasku, Fr. Traquet patre,
Ge. Schwarzkehlchen, It. Saltimpalo, No. Svartstrupe,
Sp. Tarabilla común, Sw. Svarthakad buskskvätta)
is a member of the Old World flycatcher family
Muscicapidae. In the past it was usually treated in a
far wider sense, as the Common Stonechat (Saxicola
torquata sensu lato), but recent genetic evidence
strongly supports the status as full species for the
European Stonechat (S. rubicola, previously S.
torquata rubicola) and the Siberian Stonechat (S.
maura, previously Saxicola torquata maura).
It has a scattered distribution across much of
southern Africa, and more locally in central and sub-
Saharan northern Africa north to Senegal and Ethiopia,
with outlying populations in the mountains of
southwest Arabia, and on Madagascar and Grand Comoro
Island. It is non-migratory, moving only locally if at
all; as a result, it has developed much regional
variation, being divided into 12 subspecies.
Male Stonechats, especially in spring are
unmistakable, with their tricoloured plumage: black
heads, orange breasts and big white blobs on the sides
of the neck. The same pattern can just about be seen
on females and juveniles but they are brown not black
on the head and upperparts and the orange and white
areas are much less pronounced. Some such birds may
resemble Whinchats, but Stonechats have fatter bodies,
shorter wings and longer tails and, above all, they
have no eyestripe to break up their generally dark
Breeds and winters in heathland and sometimes
moorland, especially gorse-covered heaths by the coast.
too bad, left some spots, after trying to get them
away in PS. the real problem at that time was
my mirror/autofocus system had a disfunction
and i had to focus all photos manually
which can be a handicap with fast birds.
Runnerduck, Luc, coasties has marked this note useful
Only registered TrekNature members may rate photo notes.