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My coolest bird skull yet


On Monday, Dad went out early for a walk to photograph red deer on the Titus Well moor. As he was coming back, he took a new path through the woods, and found this skull in a ditch. It has a long bill like an oystercatcher, and that was what he thought it was.

This skull is cool. A lot of birds that live near water have long bills like this. The oystercatcher uses its beak to eat cockles in their shells. We get quite a lot of oystercatchers near us during the summer.

To check whether it was an oystercatcher, we used skullsite.com. We put in that it had a long slender bill, and because it was about 114mm long we put in to look for any skulls between 105mm and 120mm with a long slender beak.

Here's where it got a bit confusing. Oystercatcher skulls should be about 120mm long. Another skull it might have been was a woodcock, which live in woods but they only come out at night, so they are hard to see. Woodcock skulls are supposed to be about 107mm long. But the detail on the bill looked most like a woodcock, so that's what I think it is, but I might be wrong.

Here's more about woodcocks on the RSPB website.

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