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Alvor, Algarve


Make Canon EOS 7D Mark II
Lens Canon EF 100-400 mm f/4.5-5.6L IS USM   at 272 mm
Exposure 1/2000, f/14, ISO 1000 
Image size 800 x 533 pixels

IOC Names

Order  Passeriformes   Family  Corvidae

Deutsch  Alpenkrähe Dutch  Alpenkraai
Italian  Gracchio corallino Spanish  Chova piquirroja


A member of the crow family, the chough  (Pyrrhocorax pyrrhocorax) is glossy black in colour, with a long curved red bill and red legs, unique in the family. The Alpine chough has similar red legs, but its bill is yellow. Males and females are similar in appearance, but in juveniles the bill is yellow and the plumage and legs are duller in colour than in adults, a feature also present in the Alpine chough. The most frequent call is produced on the wing, and is a descending 'chiach', which may have given rise to the common name, originally pronounced 'chow' (now pronounced 'chuff'). In the UK, the chough is restricted to parts of Cornwall, the north and west of Wales, the Gower Peninsula, the north coast of Northern Ireland and the south-west Scottish Islands. It was once very common in Cornwall and it features on the Cornish coat of arms. This species suffered a long decline, but in recent decades numbers have been increasing; in 2002 it bred in Cornwall for the first time in England for 50 years.It is believed that one of the factors involved in the decline of the chough was persecution; during the 19th and early 20th centuries, many choughs were shot for sport.

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Red-billed Chough
Pyrrhocorax pyrrhocorax
Crave à bec rouge

Jean-Michel PAULUS