AGE – BEST CRITERIA:
Autumn criterias are still applicable, though 2cy are more affected to wear during the winter than adult. In 2cy, moult contrasts are usually present in GC, most often in the inner or central part of the arm. Adult bird shows a uniform plumage lacking moult contrasts.
- Most birds included 2-6 inner GC in the post-juvenile moult. Juvenile outer GC show a slightly more rusty hue and often wider buff tips that reaches further down the shaft. Inner moulted post-juvenile feathers are slightly more olive and generally shows a smaller buff tip (or no pale tip at all). Note that size and shape of the pale tips varies in all ages, and is not safe to use for aging, but rather a mean to find the moult contrast together with the basic hue (rust/olive).
- Juvenile RR are generally slightly more narrow and more pointed, but difficult birds are sometimes seen.
- Juvenile TT are slightly more rusty than post-juvenile. Moult contrasts within the TT are not common, but instead they should be compared to inner GC (which most often are post-juvenile, being more olive than the juvenile TT).
- Tips of juvenile PC are often slightly more loose/frayed than in adult, and the PC are generally somewhat paler and more rusty on the outer vane (and often, but not always, shows a smaller dark tip).
- Whole plumage uniform, lacking moult contrasts.
- GC are uniformly olive with rather small (or sometimes no) pale tips.
- RR are generally slightly broader, more blunt tipped and often in better condition.
- TT show the same olive hue as the inner GC.
- PC are slightly more dense, crisp fresh, more olive and often with a slightly larger dark tip.