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Posts posted by mfoster.vt

  1. Got these pics today of snow geese (I think).  They were at quite a distance, so the pics are highly cropped.  I called them snow geese in the field and that is still what I would call them as I can't come up with anything else they could be.  The thing that disturbs me a bit is the color of their bills and the fact that they seem large in comparison to the Canada's.  I'm thinking the beak color is maybe just a variation (I have seen dark beaks and usually orange, but don't think I have ever seen yellowish beaks).  If anyone can help me sort this out I would appreciate it.






  2. I am pretty sure this is a Hoary Redpoll but wanted to run it by others before adding it to my checklist.  This was in a flock of about 180 commons.  I think it is the same bird, but it could be different birds as they were constantly on the move and getting pics was difficult.  Seems to check all the boxes.  Smaller beak, very light color, no streaking on the undertail coverts (though I never got a really good photo of that).  It's a rarity here, so I wanted to be sure before I called it.  Last 2 photos are not in focus, but I think show the bird in profile showing a bit of a squashed face and small beak.




  3. I got these pics on Friday in Addison Vermont.  This is a place that Snow geese are reliably seen until snow drives them further south.  I went there actually to see and get pics of Short-eared owls, which I did find and photograph (lifer) but decided to take some pics of the 1500 or so Snow geese in hopes of maybe picking out a Ross's.  This is the only bird that caught my eye while sorting through.  It happens that I took the pics about an hour apart, but I believe it is the same bird that I picked out of the many pics.  Markings of the blue form look the same.  At first I thought it strange that of all the geese, that I happened to find 2 possible Ross's that were both blue morphs, but now I think it is the same bird,  Thoughts on Ross's.  Looks to have a shorter neck and stubby bill compared to the Snow geese.



  4. I tried once for a Hoary Redpoll that has been seen near me, and found it was actually a light colored Common Redpoll.  I went back today and think that this is actually a Hoary  but am looking for confirmation as it is a lifer for me.  This definitely is a lighter colored bird with lighter side streaks, white undertail coverts, a stubbier bill (smushed in look).  I believe this fits the bill.  Just wondering if people here think so as well.



  5. I was at a spot in Vermont where a Hoary Redpoll had been sighted.  I found that bird and it was a lifer for me.  While there I took some quick photos of a bunch of Common Mergansers and one Ring billed gull on the CT river just to document them.  Looking at the photos (I was trying to be sure of the ID on the Ring Billed Gull)  I noticed this darker duck in the group.  Smaller than the Common Mergansers, looks to have a dark bill and perhaps a light or white collar. All I can think of is a female Hooded merganser, but it just doesn't quite look right for that.  These birds were at quite a distance an these images are highly cropped and not in the best focus but perhaps good enough.



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