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Mindy Smith

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Everything posted by Mindy Smith

  1. Was photographing some pipits today (SE British Columbia) and this one had a dark patch/indentation on the belly - is this a brood patch? Thanks in advance.
  2. Saw this lovely bird in SE British Columbia Champion Lake today. Assumed it was an immature common loon but it was quite large and with the checkerboard back and large bill was wondering if this might be a yellow-billed loon - likely too far South, but thought I'd ask. All same bird, just different lighting. Thanks in advance.
  3. Thanks Paul. Things were bad in the central Okanagan and south in the states so smokey for a while but mostly OK in my immediate area. Hard for the birds and things got really quiet during those times. Lots of people working on climate change so hoping for a better future. Check out carbon sequestration in BC (https://carbonengineering.com).
  4. Seen today, Southern BC, Waldie Island trail. The eyes seem dark so I am thinking California vs. Herring. But could be a mix Thanks in advance.
  5. Forsters have thicker bills and longer tails but most helpful if you see them fly - Common have black on wings. If they are in non-breeding plumage, as these should be, Forsters black head patch still covers the eye but the common black patch looks more like it is on the back of the head behind the eye. I still have trouble with this too. I'm told it gets easier with practice and time.
  6. Seen today SE British Columbia. Terrible light but I think the rounded head favors Sharp-shinned. Tail is a bit ratty so hard to see if rounded or square. Any other hints on separating the two appreciated. Thanks in advance
  7. Agree that it sounds like a Virginia Rail
  8. Thanks, should have known the blackbird - seemed large for a sparrow and too speckled.
  9. Agree with the veery vibe. Seems lighter and little eye ring. If you heard the song, you could tell more easily. The descending flute-like call is quite distinct with the veery.
  10. Seen Friday Aug 20 at Robert Long Park in SE Michigan. I think this is an Eastern Wood Pewee and a juvenile song sparrow but would appreciate any opinions. Also, the third is from SE BC, Canada of a juvenile red-napped sapsucker but was wondering if there is a way to tell this bird apart from a juvenile yellow-bellied sapsucker. Thanks in advance.
  11. I'd say Greater yellowlegs. Lots of barring is seen in breeding birds. Bill seems too long for lesser. Would wait for additional confirmation.
  12. Saw this bird today in Suburban Detroit, MI. Without hearing the bird, I have trouble deciding between an Eastern Wood-pewee from Willow flycatcher. I know the wing length and sharpness of wing bars should help but can someone confirm which bird this is and help me with any other distinguishing visual features? I have no trouble if I hear them sing (if one can call it singing). Thanks in advance.
  13. Seemed like too much brown on wings and mustache. Thanks to you both.
  14. Saw this one today, Detroit Michigan suburb, in a mixed grouping of Mourning Doves and a song sparrow beneath a feeder. Color of a juvenile starling but beak is finch or sparrow. No apparent markings on the chest. Didn't look quite right for female cowbird but maybe. Thanks in advance
  15. Rainy day in southeastern BC today. Saw this sparrow that I think is a vesper (chestnut shoulder). Also this bird that I think might be a female yellow-headed blackbird but she was hanging out with a couple of Brewer's males and there were a few cowbirds nearby. Have only seen male yellow-headed blackbirds before and they are easy to tell. Thanks in advance.
  16. Hadn't thought of a female Redhead but she looks more like one than a ring-neck based on head shape and lack of any white in front of the bill.
  17. Inclined to agree with juvenile common grackle - the bill is not right for catbird either
  18. Saw this female yesterday SE Canada at Waldie Island trail pond in Castlegar hanging with a group of mallards and two male ring-necked ducks. Is she a hybrid? Thanks in advance.
  19. Saw this bird today on Waldie Island Trail in Castlegar (southeastern) BC. Gray head, back and wings with lighter belly; very clear white complete eye ring. Did not see brown on wings or white at tail edges but looks most like a Townsend's solitaire. Would be the first I've seen this year if so. Only shot I could get was from the back. Thoughts? Thanks in advance.
  20. Thanks. So the sharp-shinned have slightly more rounded heads, lack that low brow ridge that makes Cooper's look like they will rip your face off, and even tail feathers. Really appreciate the attention to detail and time it takes to get these.
  21. Seen March 30 10 am at McNary NWR Burbank slough. I have trouble distinguishing immature Cooper's from Sharp-shinned. Including a photo of the tail and check to show better detail. I think this is a Cooper's but not sure if it meets the thicker legs, rounded tail, and less blurry strips without them standing next to each other... Also, while we were there, a large flock of snow geese flew in. I took these two photos but am wondering about how to estimate the number of birds. Ballpark, I thought about 800 but my partner thought over 1000. Any tips on counting would be helpful.
  22. Thanks. That is helpful, as the demarcation is quite clear in this bird. I have some trouble with light effects on color but from photos online, the color is certainly more vibrant in the commons.
  23. Thanks. I see. I guess I thought there was a range of phenotypes but not that there were subspecies. Explains why some WCSP look so different from others. Best,
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