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Everything posted by Dan

  1. hmmm... Wonder about (2). Wouldn't a Chipping Sparrow have a brown cap and a darker/black eyeline?
  2. National Geographic Field Guide to the Birds of North America. 6th edition. Page 523.
  3. I checked a field guide again for all variations - the one labeled “juvenile” seems spot on.
  4. Arghh.... I relent to your collective wisdom. Thanks all
  5. maybe. But has some significant differences from my other goldfinches (of which I have a horde). - the back is orang'ish, not olive, the wing bars are orange'ish, it is a little larger, has only a yellow chin/breast not the belly (the belly is white), and the wings are jet black.
  6. yes, yes, I know it is an awful pic. Had problems getting WIFI working on my camera yesterday so it is a photo of a photo. If not good enough I can try to get technology to work again. At my feeder yesterday (actually there were 3 of them) mixed in with the finches. I live in mountains of western NC - at about 3k feet in elevation. Any ideas?
  7. Last 2 weeks of August my visitors declined 90%+, picking back up since 9/1. I guess could be migration thing, or something more-natural-and-yummy-than-my feeder-food came out in the area for a few weeks. Or the hawks are hanging around more.
  8. Seems like lot of birds in my area (western NC mountains at about 3,000 ft) are just finishing up their molt - cardinals, mockingbirds, bluebirds,... Unless they are bald and shabby looking for other reasons. I don't think my other common feeder birds - nuthatch, brown thrasher, house finch, goldfinch, sparrow, chickadee, starling, dove, ... ever did it (or they hid when doing so).
  9. I was thinking Song Sparrow too. It did have darker breast streaks than these photos, but no dark breast spot which may be typical for Song Sparrow? New variety called the “Western NC Mountain Spotless Song Sparrow”?
  10. Wow. I saw what looks like the same species (top 2 pics) for the first time at my feeders yesterday. It stood out for me as I have never seen a bird with the 2 dark spots (1 under each side of the chin/malar area). and what seemed like a longer than usual tail. But I live in Western NC. Couldn't ID them.
  11. Western NC. Very insistent on chasing away all other visitors. I assume Ruby based on locale, but wanted to verify,
  12. I noticed the same thing in my yard. Over the last week they have begun to appear again, but in smaller numbers
  13. I do much prefer the Mac UI over Windows - look/feel and actual productivity saver. And the number of supported gestures on the trackpad makes a mouse nearly obsolete for me. And so much "simpler", way too many options in WIndows to worry about. But you are correct, brute force updates? I had an update once take 17 hours and I had no choice as it triggered it while shutting the PC down in my office. I had to carry it out of my office, set it down on the seat of my car so it would continue updating on my drive home, carry it into the house still updating, etc. And AndreLamothe's comments are spot on. I worked at Cisco Systems for about a dozen years, during which time I hired several people from Apple. They tell me that in no way would today's problems at Apple have been tolerated under prior management. So grudgingly back to WIndows I go. Not because Windows is attracting me, but because Apple is chasing me away.
  14. Awesome photo. Pileated Woodpeckers are my arch enemy. I live in a log house - they can peck a hole the size around of a tennis ball in a window frame in just a few minutes. And they aren't easily scared off, without coming right back.
  15. Not many. I live in the Western NC mountains - not big raptor country. Quite a few vultures but have to find some open areas to see most hawks, etc. Probably seen 15 all year. I do plan on visiting a few hawk watch sites this fall for the first time.
  16. Awesome summary. A few add-ons from my perspective - I switched back to the Mac platform as Microsoft start losing its' way with Windows - usability issues, quality issues, an awful update process, etc. and, as Apple had the market cornered in these respects, I was willing to pay the extra to get it. No more. My current MacBook Pro will be my last Apple laptop product. Back to PC land for me - Microsoft is going (albeit slowly) in the right direction in terms of usability and quality and price point, and Apple is going the wrong way. The difference in cost (and lack of compatibility with the inevitable MS apps I have to use for work) no longer make it a good option. On the apps side - Office products are getting more and more incompatible, SharePoint is no longer useable from a Mac, and now Apple is going away from the Intel chip set (and as a result I'm guessing will spur even further incompatibility on the Office apps side). And the latest - my own Mac triggered a brute force attack against itself (the wonderful keychain tool). It triggered so many login attempts in a short period of time our threat protection software locked all my accounts. And since it was triggered by what was considered a friendly (i.e. not external internet based source) - threat protection didn't block it. Granted much of this is because we try to use a Mac in a business environment - for which it was never intended, and is getting further away from. Maybe a different story from the consumer view of things.
  17. Ha! Do I get a prize for authoring the first post? Just sharing an observation about hummingbirds at my feeders. Bullying - not a new problem. What I wanted to share was the "how", as it is new to me. I have one hummer that watches one of my feeders from a perch about 30 yards away. When he sees any other hummer at "his" feeder - he swoops down to chase off the invading marauder. Here is the interesting part to me - after his act of bullying he returns to the EXACT SAME perch. A tiny 12 inch long dead twig hanging off another larger branch in a 4 story tall pine tree. He has been doing this for over a week. And it is a positional thing, not that he likes that particular feeder. When I move the original feeder about 6 feet away, and replace it with a different feeder in the same spot - he doesn't guard the old feeder (now in a new location a few feet away), he now guards the new feeder. He just likes whatever feeder I put in that particular spot. Maybe I just need to get a life ...
  18. Look exactly like what I saw when in Northern OH about a month ago. About a dozen swarming around an open field. I ID'd them as Northern Rough-Winged Swallow also.
  19. That is an excellent shot - DOF, bokeh, lighting angle, saturation, position of subject in frame, ...
  20. Good to know. Around 7:00 last night all the birds in my yard starting making a huge racket. I looked up in one of my pine trees and saw a bird just like this one. The gang heckled him until he decided to move on.
  21. Can't comment on 2/3 without some research (and really no need cause it seems psweet is always right), but in my limited experience 1 is definitely Anhinga - I have lots of photos from several Florida trips.
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