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Everything posted by Metaquatic

  1. Yes, please give the location you saw the bird. It's probably a woodpecker of sorts. Charlie S gives a good guess at Red-Headed Woodpecker. I will go way out on a limb and guess Red-breasted Sapsucker if you live in North California, Oregon, Washington area.
  2. Sorry, I errantly lumped Tyrannidae with the Empids. Still difficult to ID.
  3. Not to dampen your birding spirit too much but, Flycatcher (Empidonax) ID is hard even for the experts when they have the bird in their hand. The visual differentiations are minute and very debatable even with a picture National Geographic would be proud of. Too shorten the list you can use eBird to see what is being seen in your location. Here is a link to some visual ID helps; http://publications.aba.org/birding_archive_files/v41n2p30.pdf. Finally, the best birders I know mostly rely on audible cues from the bird. Once you get a few songs under your belt you will be able to tell the difference between a Dusky-capped and Brown-crested Flycatcher long before you even see the bird. Good Luck!
  4. Since no body is responding I will give it a go.... This is clearly a female. Lack of rufous sides rule out Rufous and Allen's Hummingbird. Shorter wings to tail ratio and bill shape point me to Anna's or Black-chinned Hummingbird. White tips on the tail make my best guess Black-chinned Hummingbird. Let's see what other's say.
  5. Common Nighthawks flap their wings a lot! This "flappy" behavior is an ID characteristic, as compared to soaring or strong full wing flaps of most raptors. They also have an unusual "Peeent" sound if you stop to listen. Cool Bird!
  6. That is so cool. I looked at Rich Media files on eBird and almost all the House Finches are yellow/orange in Hawaii. Hopefully my feeders will "redden" him back up for the next molt. Thanks.
  7. I've seen yellow Cardinals before but this is my first House Finch with strange pigmentation. The large cheek patch in picture # 3 almost looks like a female Purple Finch.
  8. Beautiful Pigeon. This could be a racing pigeon. I am sure someone around here knows more about domestic pigeons.
  9. I agree Rock Pigeon is a good guess. I looked in your area and there are Ring-billed Gulls and Herring Gull at Cedar Lake and Lemon Lake near you. All three like to perch on roof tops. Try to get that picture up.
  10. These birds are great to flock to feeders. If you don't have one, put one up!
  11. The Moderator calls it a Red-breasted Merganser
  12. eBird says Hooded is typical and Common Merganser is Rare. I will post the pics with Hooded and see what my local moderator has to say about it. Thanks
  13. At a distance it's hard to tell. I would think my bird was bigger than a Hooded Merganser. But there was nothing to compare it to. It flew with constant shallow beats.
  14. I was thinking the same but the double wing bars through me off. Maybe a juvenile?
  15. Central Mississippi farm pond. It was good Duck habitat with Mallards and Black Bellied Whistlers around. This one was off by itself on a little mud island.
  16. I have fallen for the House Sparrow out of it's native habitat (supermarket parking lot) before. Makes you feel like a fool. Well, join the club. 🙂
  17. Let me second guess myself by offering a Yellow-billed Cuckoo. It is very secretive and I have never seen one at a feeder but a possibility.
  18. Welcome to Whatbird! In general, there is no Grackle sized, black bird with white under tail that is native to Virginia. Some possibilities in order of my opinion of what you saw; 1. Grackles are iridescent and what you really saw was glossy light reflection rather than light feathers. 2. The bird had a leucistic (white) spot. Leucism is an abnormal plumage condition caused by a genetic mutation. 3. The bird could be someone's exotic pet that has escaped, like a Pied Currawong native to Australia 4. The chances are slim that you have Magpie that far east but stranger things have happened. Try to get a pic if it comes back.
  19. Nice picture. It makes it easy to pick apart the subtle differences between Least, Alders, Acadian, Willow etc. But even then the bird may be juvenile or the light might be a little off. I still think the only sure way to tell them apart is by their call. The Acadian gives a simple "Peesweet". This time of the year they are pretty vocal. You could go back and listen for and ID.
  20. Black-billed Magpie? Very aggressive and known for dive bombing people during nesting. But it is not a small bird.
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