Birding Bloopers #8

Here is another birding blooper – a misidentification of an object thought to be a bird. This one comes from ‘Anonymous’, an Australian birder on a visit to South Africa.

My worst moment came whilst on a twitchathon in South Africa, I called a White Stork soaring in the thermals above the car……turned out to be a hang-glider!

I would have though that the size and shape would have given it away, but then I’ve been fooled by thinking a banana skin was a Golden Whistler dead on the road (click here).

Thanks to the birder from the Birding-Aus forum who gave permission to use this blooper.

For more in this series click here.

Question for readers:

When did you experience an embarrassing birding moment? Perhaps it was a mistaken identification. Perhaps you didn’t look carefully enough and were later proved wrong. Maybe the bird itself fooled you in some way.
I invite readers to submit their birding bloopers in the comments section below. If it’s good enough I might just feature it in a post of its own, with a link back to your blog (if you have one).


4 Responses to “Birding Bloopers #8”

  1. Snail says:

    I have too many to list but I’ll happily pass on someone else’s birding blooper.

    We were at Phillip Island in Victoria, watching seabirds from the cliffs on the ocean side. I was looking out to sea, my friend was looking back at the muttonbird colony.

    She nudged me and said, ‘What bird is that?’

    I trained my binoculars on the object that was emerging from behind the bushes.

    It was the rescue helicopter.

  2. Trevor says:

    Was it coming to rescue you from your embarrassment?

  3. Snail says:

    I’m still trying to work out how she mistook it for a bird. Apart from the shape and size, it was also red and yellow.

  4. Trevor says:

    Ah – it was the colour that confused her.

    Still – shape, size, behaviour all point to a non-bird type ID but I wonder if the combination of colour and sound was enough to throw her completely off course.

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