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Everything posted by millipede

  1. Birding Arkansas facebook group... Got this photo. I suggested sharp-shinned or cooper's, and I'm leaning towards sharp-shinned. Had someone commenting maybe it was a kestrel. Someone asked the person who posted it how big it was. They said big. At least RTHA size. They also said, in response to another comment, they're tool old to be told what they do and don't know, or something. I wish there was a better angle, I'd be more confident one way or the other. I see paler on the side of the head/neck, but you can't see the back of the neck well, if at all. I THINK I can see it dark back there, but, that's hard to judge for me. Just the size of the head related to the body combined with the shape of the head, loos SSHA to me. But, I wouldn't mind other thoughts.
  2. This is one of the birds where I wonder if they do DNA testing and such to show enough distinction for them to be two completely separate species. 🤔 It's bad enough when I could go either way because photos aren't good... but when photos are good and you can still go either way? I have a few other photos of both birds. These were just good enough, or I thought good enough to get answers with. ha. I have about a dozen photos of that male with at least some obvious green sheen to it. And the female, I'll have to study some more, and maybe I'm mistaken about what is considered the nail, or how to judge it. The black on the tip of the female's bill seems to be as wide as the bill itself, but, that might not all be the "nail" but, just black? Does that make sense. Unless I see a convincing argument, I likely will put them both in as a /
  3. Any second opinions? (I guess since I had the first opinion, any 3rd opinions?) Haven't uploaded that checklist to eBird yet.
  4. The bill alone had pintail in my brain... overall shape as well. I'm not going to go look at a book to see myself... what other traits/marks would be used in this ID?
  5. I thought I just had a group of ring-necked ducks but as I got closer... scaup... At first I thought lesser, but I didn't focus while in the field as I was on something of a field trip and, well I was WAY behind everyone. HA. The head appears greenish in every pic I have, which would lean greater. I feel the head shape, and bill width could support greater. And the female that is in some photos, the nail on the bill is WIDE... suggesting greater. But, this male... that nail is pretty narrow. I'm still leaning greater though for the other reasons but would love some feedback.
  6. Here's more photos, after I lightened them. In MOST of the photos, it's mostly dark but if I zoom in enough, it looks like a light tail band before a dark end to it. (I hadn't known this was a rough-legged trait, and wasn't looking for it.) In one or two photos, the whole underside is just DARK... until I brighten it... then that tail band shows up. It shows up(to my eyes) in every photo. The one angle of the bird flying away, it only shows up on one side of the tail, poor angle and light... but, it seems to be showing up in the same place in each photo. Man I wish I had better photos... I marked next to the tail where I believe I see the band on this photo... same place in every photo... Only marked this one though. Even in this one, the worst quality photo of them all... as I lightened it, looks like a light band to me. Ugh I wish I had better photos...
  7. To me, the tail goes dark, light, dark... but... poor photos. I have others, all poor. But, I'll go look at them just for fun. My general rule is if it looks like a buteo and I'm not sure, it's red-tailed. HA
  8. NW Arkansas I'm guessing red-tailed? I HAD to get pictures when I saw it. Definitely different, but so dark. Not great photos. I have other photos, I just took one of the better ones and have the original version and a lightened version...
  9. Thanks. It's normal for RBGU to not have spots on the ends of the black part of the wings? I thought those spots were a field mark for them. Never mind. I just opened Sibley's East to look. Some of these might be first winter birds then? Why can't they just wear name tags for me? HA Honestly, my assessment is easy for the ones where you can see a ring on the bill developing. The others, it's based more on knowing what should be here right now. Thought I'd share photos just in case something interesting slipped in under my radar.
  10. NW Arkansas. I have other birds from the same trip but, so it's not too jumbled, this one is just gulls. It is most likely all ring-billed with one franklin's. Some of the ring-billed are odd looking. I like it when they're in adult plumage and even the ring is obvious. So, some of these are young, no complete ring... one doesn't have white spotting on the ends of the wings, etc... different looking birds. I love and hate that they're different. HA... This one... ringed bill seems fairly clear... no spots at the end of the wings... Same bird I believe... better photo, different wing position. Maybe same bird? Interesting spots on tail Wish I had other angles of this one... Just for fun... the franklin's... Typically I see these in flocks so it's always kind of interesting to me when I see just one or a couple, with or without another flock. Just one single bird here... I have some other photos of the gulls but these are the best as far as trying to see IDable features...
  11. That's what I was thinking. Gulls are so frustrating, especially if they're not in breeding plumage and don't have ID marks that I've learned, so far. I'll leave my list reflecting the 10 RBGU I know were there and nothing more... I'll have more gull photos from the day before that on here, hopefully today. I still struggle with not posting tooooooo many photos in one post. I mean, if I have a lot of photos from one trip and I think those photos help in IDing the birds... It's hard to limit myself. I'll try though. 🙂 I'll have some gulls and some shorebirds I want to double check.
  12. Pretty sure this pair are lesser scaups... I have photos of them in the water. At least one photo, the peak on the male's head is looking like it's at the back but, they were clear on the other side of the lake and the pics are horrible. Thankfully they came closer when flying. And then this gull. Is it IDable? There were at least 10 RBGU at the lake but once in a while you'd see one flying up high, like this one, and I don't know if it had been part of the group or not. Can't see much here that helps me ID it.
  13. This is all good info if collecting audio is your primary goal. But when you're out in the field focused on birding, maybe photos, and you just happen to hear a bird you're unsure of, well, sometimes there's nothing you can do. Where I was, the insect noise was making it so you could barely hear the bird in that recording. There's really nothing I could have done about that with what I had to work with at the time. I couldn't have gone closer without trampling habitat. Just had the cell phone. By the time the people near my walked away, the bird was quiet.
  14. any other thoughts on the waterthrush, by sight or sound? In the field, the chipping seemed to match the LOWA pretty well, and it was responding the couple times I played it. (though I was just playing calls, not songs) Merlin called it LOWA by sight and sound BUT... I do believe that Merlin will spit out different answers based on what they expect in a given area.
  15. Outside of that dark band, that's definitely the feel I had for that bird once I was looking at the photos(I don't remember which birds I took photos of) I've been confused by Merlin calling it a broad-winged... and also confused by the dark band on the tail. Not something I'm used to. It's very clear, and pretty thick, in all of the other photos of it. Any particular form/morph here? Younger bird?
  16. Merlin is calling this one a broad-winged. It has just one dark band... kind of plain tail other than that. Some of the markings make me feel like it's a BWHA... but, that one dark band on the tail. I have a bunch of other photos of this bird but this is one of the better ones I think. And then, here's the checklist there... with a waterthrush I called a louisiana. By sound, response to playback, Merlin saying so(ha) Seems a bit streaky... and, maybe the throat isn't streaky like it looks in the photo, and sadly, that's the best photo. The eBird checklist has the photo and the audio file. It was 8MB and I didn't want to upload it a second time. (my DSL is under 5Mbps download speed... upload is SLOW.)(although, I still remember dialup...) https://ebird.org/checklist/S150576893
  17. I was hoping for an ID... ha... oh well. I may put down empid sp. Based on where this bird was hanging out and the sounds I was hearing, I'd bet money it wasn't a cardinal. Maybe not a lot of money though. HA. Was a willow tree but I watched for a while, even after the bird went silent. I'm 99% sure I would have seen a cardinal in there at some point. Thanks for the help.
  18. Any thoughts on the bird? And, I have Audacity... but, I've never seen a way to separate frequencies and such... It's probably like the Gimp with photo editing... powerful but, not self-explanatory.
  19. NW Arkansas today. A willow flycatcher would be flagged here right now, mostly because those empids get overlooked in the fall around here. There's been a lot of talk on least flycatchers being overlooked in this area this time of year, and they're also flagged on eBird. I had a singing least the day before at a different location and I reported a willow after seeing an empid with no eye ring making the same sort of wit calls. I have software where I can raise and lower the volume of different areas but I'm not able to separate different sounds from each other. Would be cool if I had something like that to take out camera noise, my walking, the wind, etc. ha
  20. I wish I knew how to use my camera better...(also wish I had a better camera) Someone else got photos where you could very clearly see what it was. Kestrel absolutely confirmed. Interesting ID mark to look for, that string of pearls... I wondered if what I was seeing would be a valuable ID point.
  21. This file is like 10MB so I uploaded it to drop box... I was hearing a fairly stead wit, wit, wit call from a willow tree. Anyone good enough to even pick up the calls and then ID? The bird never showed itself to me even though it couldn't have been more than 40 feet or so away. Eventually it went quiet. Warning... I played this to listen to it like 5 or 10 minutes ago and I can STILL hear the insects buzzing in my year. You have to turn it way up but the bugs are loud. Even though I know the bird was calling throughout, I could hear the calls better starting somewhere around halfway through. https://www.dropbox.com/scl/fi/8va25zvww0a4t51p0dgw9/2023-09-24-10_36.wav?rlkey=xut1es9r72lrk3i6wt6yswmw2&dl=0
  22. now I really wish I had better pictures. I lightened them but wasn't seeing anymore detail as I did that. Merlin would have been a pretty exciting bird for that trip.......
  23. On a field trip this morning... accipiter is what I called it. I had someone questioning(from further away) if it was a kite or something. Unfortunately, I'm a point and shoot kind of guy with a camera so when they're up there and the lighting isn't great, this is what you get... (after I lightened them some...) I was leaning towards SSHA if it's an accipiter because of the head projection and overall sleek appearance. I am wondering, the markings or effect on the trailing edge of the wings seems present in all three photos... is this significant, or an ID mark? Any chance of it being something like a falcon, merlin maybe? I just used Merlin(the app) on this first picture and it suggested nighthawk, or merlin. (gotta love Merlin HA)
  24. Ha... How about now? I should have lightened it in the first place. Sorry. It looks weird to me but, I'm not seeing any facial markings like I'd expect on a sparrow around here... can't imagine it being anything but indigo at this point but, something about it's back is still just weird to me.
  25. NW Arkansas today... I was certain I was hearing a lincoln's sparrow chip mixed in with what I was sure were indigo buntings. Bushy weeds, at least 4 or 5 birds in there but, all very hidden. This one bird did show itself some compared to the others but, I'm not so convinced it's a sparrow... in the field, the pattern on the back just looked completely sparrow to me, did NOT look like an indigo. But... this is the best pic I got of the bird. I stayed pretty hidden. This bird here... ugh... I don't know if I photographed the wrong bird. Was bad lighting, just not easy. Why can't bird sit still out in a well lit area? HA I started taking photos because in my binoculars, somewhere, I saw what looked like a bay-breasted warbler. But, I have no pictures that look like what I was seeing. Either I missed the bird or it was just the way I was seeing it that had certain colors in certain places... Between what I think I saw, and this big bill, I'm thinking this is a house finch. Maybe that's all I saw? I'll never know. House finch though? Actually, no... this is just an indigo bunting isn't it? I really hate poor light and poor detail photos. grrrr... Wilson's warbler? This one seems easy. In the field I wasn't picking up on any markings that well but it's the feel I had then. Real question here is about leg/feet color. I'll have to look in my guide at some point but for yellow colored warblers, does leg/feet color help with IDs ever? I have photos from other days I still need to go through. I love taking photos but, somehow don't enjoy going through them afterwards... hmmm... Best bird of the day was a Bell's vireo. Not one I see or hear at this location typically.
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