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Black-Billed Magpie

Pica pica (Linnaeus, 1758)

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© Oksana Raldugina


The Black-billed Magpie is well known bird having contrast black and white coloring and the long strongly graduated tail which is fan-shaped in flight. The adult male and female are similar. The head, back, wing coverts, tail and tarsus feathers are velvet-black with metallic gloss (especially on the tail) of purple, blue and green tones. The belly, flanks, rump and shoulders are clear white. The primaries are; the narrow outer webs are black-grey, the inner ones are white with grey edge on terminal part and on base. The secondaries are black with expressive green-blue metallic gloss. The underwings are black-brownish. The tail is long, graduated, slaty-black below and with bright green and purple metallic gloss above, especially well expressive on males. All plumage is soft and dense. The bill and legs are black. The eyes are dark-brown. Juveniles distinguish by the loose plumage without metallic gloss and with appreciable brownish tinge. The first primary is longer and broader than in adults. Weight 195-314 grams, wing 188-218, tail 222-309 mm.


В.К.Рябицев. "Птицы Урала, Приуралья и Западной Сибири". Екатеринбург, Изд-во Уральского университета, 2000.


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