Motacillidae – Wagtails, Pipits

Eastern Yellow Wagtail (Motacilla tschutschensis) by Bob-Nan

Eastern Yellow Wagtail (Motacilla tschutschensis) by Bob-Nan

The birds of the heavens and the fish of the sea, Whatever passes through the paths of the seas. O LORD, our Lord, How majestic is Your name in all the earth! (Psalms 8:8-9 NASB)

CLASS – AVES, Order – PASSERIFORMES, Family – Motacillidae – Wagtails, Pipits

Latest I.O.C. Version
Species (69)

Forest Wagtail (Dendronanthus indicus)
Western Yellow Wagtail (Motacilla flava)
Eastern Yellow Wagtail (Motacilla tschutschensis)
Citrine Wagtail (Motacilla citreola)
Cape Wagtail (Motacilla capensis)
Madagascan Wagtail (Motacilla flaviventris)
Sao Tome Shorttail (Motacilla bocagii)
Grey Wagtail (Motacilla cinerea)
Mountain Wagtail (Motacilla clara)
White Wagtail (Motacilla alba)
African Pied Wagtail (Motacilla aguimp)
Mekong Wagtail (Motacilla samveasnae)
Japanese Wagtail (Motacilla grandis)
White-browed Wagtail (Motacilla maderaspatensis)
Golden Pipit (Tmetothylacus tenellus)
Sharpe’s Longclaw (Macronyx sharpei)
Abyssinian Longclaw (Macronyx flavicollis)
Fülleborn’s Longclaw (Macronyx fuelleborni)
Cape Longclaw (Macronyx capensis)
Yellow-throated Longclaw (Macronyx croceus)
Pangani Longclaw (Macronyx aurantiigula)
Rosy-throated Longclaw (Macronyx ameliae)
Grimwood’s Longclaw (Macronyx grimwoodi)
Richard’s Pipit (Anthus richardi)
Paddyfield Pipit (Anthus rufulus)
Australian Pipit (Anthus australis)
New Zealand Pipit (Anthus novaeseelandiae)
African Pipit (Anthus cinnamomeus)
Mountain Pipit (Anthus hoeschi)
Blyth’s Pipit (Anthus godlewskii)
Tawny Pipit (Anthus campestris)
Long-billed Pipit (Anthus similis)
Nicholson’s Pipit (Anthus nicholsoni)
Wood Pipit (Anthus nyassae)
Buffy Pipit (Anthus vaalensis)
Plain-backed Pipit (Anthus leucophrys)
Long-legged Pipit (Anthus pallidiventris)
Meadow Pipit (Anthus pratensis)
Tree Pipit (Anthus trivialis)
Olive-backed Pipit (Anthus hodgsoni)
Pechora Pipit (Anthus gustavi)
Rosy Pipit (Anthus roseatus)
Red-throated Pipit (Anthus cervinus)
Buff-bellied Pipit (Anthus rubescens)
Water Pipit (Anthus spinoletta)
Eurasian Rock Pipit (Anthus petrosus)
Nilgiri Pipit (Anthus nilghiriensis)
Upland Pipit (Anthus sylvanus)
Berthelot’s Pipit (Anthus berthelotii)
Striped Pipit (Anthus lineiventris)
African Rock Pipit (Anthus crenatus)
Short-tailed Pipit (Anthus brachyurus)
Bushveld Pipit (Anthus caffer)
Sokoke Pipit (Anthus sokokensis)
Malindi Pipit (Anthus melindae)
Yellow-breasted Pipit (Anthus chloris)
Alpine Pipit (Anthus gutturalis)
Madanga (Anthus ruficollis)
Sprague’s Pipit (Anthus spragueii)
Yellowish Pipit (Anthus lutescens)
Peruvian Pipit (Anthus peruvianus)
Short-billed Pipit (Anthus furcatus)
Puna Pipit (Anthus brevirostris)
Pampas Pipit (Anthus chacoensis)
Correndera Pipit (Anthus correndera)
South Georgia Pipit (Anthus antarcticus)
Ochre-breasted Pipit (Anthus nattereri)
Hellmayr’s Pipit (Anthus hellmayri)
Paramo Pipit (Anthus bogotensis)

On the photos or slides, a “by” indicates one of the photographers or videographers, who have given their permission, with links on our sidebar. Please visit their site to see many more fantastic shots, a “©©” copyright symbol indicates a photo from Creative Commons and ©WikiC is a Creative Commons photo from Wikipedia.

Photographers or Videographers used on this page from our sidebar, Photography, are:
Bob & Nan’s Gallery
Dave’s BirdingPix
Ian Montgomery’s Birdway
Nikhil Devasar’s Gallery

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The Motacillidae are a family of small passerine birds with medium to long tails. There are around 65 species in 6 genera and they include the wagtails, longclaws and pipits. The longclaws are entirely restricted to the Afrotropics, and the wagtails are predominantly found in Europe, Africa and Asia, with two species migrating and breeding in Alaska. The pipits have the most cosmopolitan distribution, being found across mostly in the Old World but occurring also in the Americas and oceanic islands such as New Zealand and the Falklands. Two African species, the Yellow-breasted Pipit and Sharpe’s Longclaw are sometimes placed in a separate seventh genus, Hemimacronyx, which is closely related to the longclaws.

Wagtails, pipits, and longclaws are slender, small to medium sized passerines, ranging from 14 to 17 centimetres in length, with short necks and long tails. They have long, pale legs with long toes and claws, particularly the hind toe which can be up to 4 cm in length in some longclaws. Overall the robust longclaws are larger than the pipits and wagtails. Longclaws can weigh as much as 64 g, whereas the weight range for pipits and wagtails is 15–31 g. The plumage of most pipits is dull brown and reminiscent of the larks, although some species have brighter plumages, particularly the Golden Pipit of north-east Africa. The adult male longclaws have brightly coloured undersides. The wagtails often have striking plumage, including grey, black, white, and yellow.

Most motacillids are ground-feeding insectivores of slightly open country. They occupy almost all available habitats, from the shore to high mountains. Wagtails prefer wetter habitats to the pipits. A few species use forests, including the Forest Wagtail, and other species use forested mountain streams, such as the Grey Wagtail or the Mountain Wagtail. (Wikipedia)

Some of the Family – Photos are Alphabetical down the columns:

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