WEEK-BY-WEEK BIRDS TO SEEK: WEEK 35 DIPPER

EVERY WEEK THIS YEAR WE WILL HAVE NEW SUGGESTIONS FOR A DIFFERENT GROUP OF BIRDS TO LOOK FOR TO HELP DEVELOP YOUR #MY200BIRDYEAR LIST

This week, it is Dipper

The Dipper is unique among British birds. Members of the dipper family are scattered across the world, but they are a low diversity group and only one occurs in Europe. Our Dipper is alternatively known as the White-throated Dipper or the European Dipper. They are classic birds of fast flowing upland streams or rocky rapids in rivers, which are the places to look for them whizzing up and down the stream, or bobbing on a rock. They are easy to identify, being about the size of a fat Starling, shaped like a giant Wren, with often cocked short tail. Black (very dark brown) above with a white throat and breast, and a black underbelly. There is a thin band of chestnut feathering between the underbelly and the white of the breast, which is absent on central European birds, which are scarce visitors to the UK in winter.Juvenile birds are greyer and a bit speckled.

 Adult Dipper (note chestnut at base of white breast, which is characteristic of UK resident birds

Adult Dipper (note chestnut at base of white breast, which is characteristic of UK resident birds

 Juvenile Dipper

Juvenile Dipper

 

All photos from Alamy