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Everything posted by lonestranger

  1. I think you are seeing the wire part of the fence, @FlowerShooter, not a part of the bird.
  2. That bird looks an awful lot like cut pieces of wood to me. The strips are too long for any feathers, aren't they? Never mind, what I thought was cuts in a piece of wood are actually branches in front of the bird? Pay no attention to me.
  3. That's a good question, I don't see a bird in the picture myself. If someone does see a bird, could they orient it for the rest of us so we know where the head and tail is in the image.
  4. Two advantages I see in favour of the Tamron 100-400, it's lighter and it has the closer minimum focus distance. I don't think that would be enough to make me choose the much shorter lens though. If you're looking for a birding lens, longer is typically better, all things being equal. The 100-400 is not any faster/brighter than the 150-600, both having F/6.3 aperture at max zoom. If I was spending your money and had to chose between these two lenses for the purpose of birding, I would buy the 150-600 for the longer reach.
  5. To add to what has already been said, the 4th shot with the raised tail shows the outer tail feathers are shorter than the inner feathers, which is another feature to help separate Coopers from the similar looking Sharp-shinned Hawk.
  6. That big mouth gull isn't taking me without a fight.
  7. The ABA Rare Bird Alert seems to support my opinion that birds don't pay attention to range maps or statistics. In the first three weekly reports for June alone there are dozens of birds that have decided that they don't want to follow the scientific norm. https://www.aba.org/rba/ Bottom line to the point I am trying to get across, if someone closes their mind to the possibility of a rarity showing up somewhere unexpected because a bar chart says it has never happened before, they run a good chance of dismissing a possible rarity and never realize it.
  8. Let me start out by saying that I am not trying to be misleading, I am trying to point out that there are exceptions and a blank bar chart does not eliminate the possibility of those exceptions. I can speak from personal experience regarding rarities and range maps, take from it what you like. I can't provide specific dates but about 5-10 years ago, I thought I saw a Painted Bunting in my Southern Ontario backyard. The bird landed on the top rail of a chain link fence right outside my patio doors. I had only ever seen pictures of Painted Buntings before and was pretty sure they weren't in my range but I was CERTAIN that I was looking at a beautiful male Painted Bunting just like the photos I had seen, and it was only a few feet away from me. I reached for my camera but the bird flew off before I could get a photo so I only had a few seconds of viewing this bird. It was easy to verify that Painted Buntings were way out of range so I started looking for more likely candidates. I couldn't find anything that matched the bird I saw but the closest candidate I could come up with was a molting Summer Tanager. I reluctantly dismissed my rarity as wishful thinking and kicked myself for not being able to get a photo. It was months, or possibly a year later when I discovered that a Painted Bunting had been documented wintering in the next county over from where I lived. Did I see a rare Painted Bunting in Southern Ontario the same year that one wintered here? Hindsight tells me that I did actually see a Painted Bunting, range maps told me to dismiss that possibility though, which I believe ultimately lead me to the wrong ID at the time. I think the fact that we know there will be shifts and changes in the graphs and charts is reason enough to be open to the possibility that those shifts and changes can happen before the charts and graphs reflect those shifts and changes. I am not saying to ignore the charts and graphs, I am suggesting that an open mind should be used when interpreting them.
  9. I agree that bar charts can be a useful tool. I'm not sure how a blank bar chart is useful in ruling out a rarity though. There would be no point in looking for rarities if they're ruled out by a blank bar chart, would there? Wouldn't ALL rarities show up as a blank bar chart right up until that rarity is reported and accepted? I am not suggesting that a rarity should be considered in this, or any uncertain ID, but ruling out a rarity based on a blank bar chart rules out the possibility of finding ANY rarities, in my opinion. As it has been stated in different ways before, birds don't follow range maps and they don't pay any attention to past statistics, they are game changers that don't give a damn about our interpretation of the rules or the boundaries of the game we play. ?
  10. Welcome to Whatbird @Stacey. It looks you have two Dark-eyed Juncos with the second one being leucistic, which is a loss of colour pigment in some of the feathers.
  11. I can swallow a fish this big, or a french fry that big.
  12. I was tracking swallows flying across the field when this deer came wandering through and stopped long enough to pose for a few shots before moving on.
  13. @xpoetmarcr gets the win and gets to pick the next photo.
  14. I was going to suggest the possibility of them growing into the red eye with age but thought I'd better look it up first. My iBird app said juveniles have dark eyes so I checked with Cornell and found the white eyed variant. Definitely a cool bird.
  15. I was curious and had a quick look and found this. https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Eastern_Towhee/photo-gallery/64991931
  16. Last call for captions, I'll call a winner later tonight or tomorrow morning.
  17. Mental note, you can get hurt if you tickle someone the wrong way.
  18. So birders are ornithologists in training, not the guys enjoying birds through the lens of a camera. Got it. I guess I am in the minority by agreeing with Kenn Kaufman. According to Kenn Kaufman, “Birding is something that we do for enjoyment; so if you enjoy it, you're a good birder. If you enjoy it a lot, you're a great birder.” I will go on record as saying that I hate terms that divide or separate similarly minded people. The notion that one method of enjoying the birds is superior to another method of enjoying birds is ridiculous to me. Having a pair of binoculars and a field guide does not mean someone enjoys the birds or learns any more than someone who uses a camera and the internet to do their learning and get their enjoyment. I'm sorry folks, I didn't mean to derail the original topic, but I can't help but feel a sense of superiority when the term birder is used to describe others as JUST something less than the birder making the reference. It comes across to me like, if you don't do it my way, you're not doing right and therefore you don't fit into the elitist group we call birders. I don't mean to offend anyone that calls themselves a birder, I know it's a label that many wear proudly. I couldn't care less though if I offend those that pass judgement on OTHERS because of the method of their birding. If a bird photographer calls themself a birder, who has the right to say they're not a birder? A real birder? Now if you'll excuse me, I am going to take my camera and go enjoy the birds for a while. Call it what you like. ?
  19. I am curious, how do you define a birder? Are there minimum requirements, beyond an interest in birds, to qualify as a birder? How do you tell the difference between birders with a camera and the bird photographers, is there a characteristic or something specific that separates the two? I am genuinely curious because it seems like the term birder gets used regularly to separate birders from those people that are considered to be something less than birders. I always thought it was an inclusive term, now I wonder if it's an exclusive term.
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