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Posts posted by millipede

  1. 2 hours ago, chipperatl said:

    You want to program one of your dials on your camera to adjust exposure compensation.  So when you get ready to take a shot of a bird in the sky, you turn the dial to over-expose the shot.  

    That sounds like a good idea. One of these days, I need to learn how to use a camera and not just point and shoot. 😕 
    I feel like Bill and Ted when they said maybe it's time they learned how to actually play guitar... 
    Why is it that learning how to do something I ENJOY doing is SO boring???  ack........ 

    side note... I'm not sure I understand the moth numbers... there's three numbers there... but, I love that you don't just count birds.
    I have, a few times, started to list mammals I've seen... and I enjoy ALL the other critters out there... but it's a lot to learn. There's probably a dozen or so butterflies I can identify on my own... and I take a lot of pictures of them. Just wish my brain was more like a computer and retained information more readily.  HA.

    • Like 3
  2. Good response... I appreciate it.

    2 hours ago, Quiscalus quiscula said:

    Well, first of all, in the lightened image you can see wing patterns that could only match Broad-winged- like the dark border on the edges and wing shape

    While looking at a few different birds, including zone-tailed, there are others that will have a dark border, including the zone-tailed...
    For wing shape, MAYBE I'll get better at that some day. Some birds, if the angle I'm viewing at is good and the way the wings are spread is typical, I can see differences for sure and get a good feel... like with the vultures... even when they're WAY up and you can't see the lighter feathers, I can typically spot a black vulture in with the turkeys pretty easily...... 
    BUT...  This bird was at such a distance(I really zoomed in here) and I could not tell how it was flying, I couldn't go by the wing shape(personally) because it could have been holding the wings differently for varying flight. ALL birds will adjust from their typical soaring, even vultures, to look pretty weird at times.


    2 hours ago, Quiscalus quiscula said:

    If this was a Zone-tailed, you'd be able to see the contrasting gray flight feathers even with this picture quality.

    This one, I can see now. I had to go look at pictures again... and not drawings but photos to see, I'd have that turkey vulture feel with lighter feathers really standing out. I never doubted anyone's ID in the first place but, this one makes it easy to see and agree with. Hopefully that sticks in my brain. 🙂

    2 hours ago, Quiscalus quiscula said:

    The banded tail also fits Broad-winged Hawk

    This is the part that threw me. I feel like I see one BIG dark band and a single light band... where I feel I typically see a little more banding than that on the broad wings I see.
    And the zone-tailed appears to have a big dark band and then a big light band, similar to what my untrained eyes see here.

    If this bird was lower at the time, I would have ID'd it properly with just the binoculars...  but it was way up there.
    And I didn't think I'd get an ID from the picture at all at first... Glad I took a photo though. SO many birds are there then gone... and if I can't ID them with binoculars, I TRY to get a picture to try and sort out later.
    I don't always get back to them... but, sometimes I do. 🙂

    • Like 1
  3. Not that I was, at all, expecting it to be a zone tailed...
    for my, hopefully, learning, can someone state what's wrong or missing in the pic to give it a "definitely not a zone-tailed?" 
    I trust you on this one... with many birds(maybe not ALL) I like a little more info to hopefully help me learn 🙂

  4. This is a good example of, I hate when a bird is a bit too far to ID with binoculars and the images are just not great... (also wish I knew how to use my camera better... and/or how to adjust from photos in one background to another... far away sky birds are always dark for me in photos)

    Anyway... saw this hawk the other week here in NW Arkansas... was looking at pictures the other day and, I'm not sure what to think.
    Common birds, of course, would be RTHA and RSHA...  Broad-winged should be migrating soon, and I've heard a few lately... Coopers are here year round... 
    This image is dark... I might go try to lighten it but, I doubt it will reveal much.
    I want to jokingly say that it looks like a zone-tailed hawk to me in this pic...  Looks like a single big light colored band... where it looks lighter and darker on the wings could potentially fit as well...
    But, this would be VERY unlikely around here.
    Not impossible, of course...
    But... I think it would be more likely for one to pass through, high, hard to see, and not noticed... than to have one stick around and be seen by many people. SO many birds, I believe, pass through places without a single observation... and many with just one single observation. I had a vermilion flycatcher one year that stuck around for many people to see. Someone else had one where they saw it for a minute, and then, no other reports that year anywhere near here. And my kiskadee in my yard that nobody else saw...
    LOTS of examples out there... that make just about anything possible... But, I'm probably dreaming... Probably broad-winged??? 
    Doesn't look right for RTHA or RSHA to me... But maybe too difficult to ID from this photo? This is zoomed in quite a bit.  Will I just leave this as hawk sp. on my list?


  5. a Louisiana birds FB group, someone shared this photo... I zoomed/cropped a little but, kept their circle in the photo. They said there were two birds hopping around.
    A group "expert" identified it as a female redstart.
    Even on my phone I zoomed in and saw no bird... then on my laptop... zoomed way in... scanned the WHOLE pic... can find no bird.
    What I see circled are leaves... with some of the fence showing through...
    I stated I didn't see a bird and IF there was a bird there, it was unidentifiable...
    They argued.
    So, I cropped and zoomed to show them their own image.
    Their response was to tell me that the bird has already been identified.
    I argued back... I don't know why.  I don't think they care to hear anything. 😕 

    Am I blind?  Do you see a bird in this pic?



    This next pic is still cropped but, not zoomed in. While I could be wrong, I imagine people looking on their phones and NOT zooming in and seeing some colors, trusting that it's actually a bird, and giving an ID.
    Why don't people question things? And, why do they get SO defensive when someone else does?


    Side note... I'm thinking WAY too much yellow for a female redstart, if that object were actually a bird.

  6. Northwest Arkansas a couple days ago. I might be pushing the boundaries of how many photos I can upload at once, we'll see.

    First a dark ibis. There were(according to reports) two there for days. Then someone had 4. Now they're gone. One person that went after my report worked hard, went back twice in the day just to try and confirm eye color. They reported seeing red around the eye on one bird. Nobody else seems to have been able to be certain so the reviewer has been telling everyone to put glossy/white-faced, even though white-faced is what's expected.(side note, when I put Merlin on my new phone, I only downloaded the Southeast pack and, it has glossy but not white-faced, ugh)  I think my birds will have to stay with the / and not be specified as I sure can't judge eye color in any of my photos. How I wish I had a mini blind to hide in so they would get closer. Oh well.






    Peeps... everyone loves them.  I had a couple least that were obvious enough I left those out. (one was so close, I wanted to pick it up and hold it in the palm of my hand.)
    semipalmated and western have been reported lately. There's a couple pics of two birds near a killdeer and the one on the right gives me a sanderling feel. When I looked in the guide, I noticed that this time of year the stints look a lot like the sanderling as well. Oh how these little shorebirds can frustrate. ack.
    This first one, maybe just the camera showing something not true but looks like pinkish orangish legs... weird.











    This one was too far for field ID but, sure gave me a good pectoral feel. I took a quick pic but sadly, BAD pose... not sure if it can be ID'd.

    Oh, here's the two pics where the one on the right sort of looks like a sanderling... but I'm sure I'm wrong


    The rest of these are all of one bird... most likely semipalmated plover but, man it's weird how a bird can look different at different angles. The mark around the neck isn't very thick and, in certain light is brown rather than black. Maybe a younger bird? The leg color is also lighter when the light is shining on it directly.


  7. So, I'm not EXACTLY asking for an ID on this bird... I TRIED to get photos of it because it did look a little different. But, it was in some brush where it wasn't well lit, so, eh... Carolina is all we have around here this time of year. About half an hour from here there's a cemetery that sometimes gets a bewick's(which I still haven't gotten) so the idea is not completely insane that I should be learning them better just in case.
    Sometimes when I look at bewick's wren pictures, I get a little frustrated... overall color and then posture can make them look a LOT alike to me sometimes.
    I need more than photos in a book to get better at distinguishing them.
    This photo is poorly lit... the tail is up, sure looks long but, again... that's just how things are sometimes.
    I don't suspect this is a bewick's...  but, I'd love some input on, with this poor a view, what would I be looking for specifically that would make it an easier ID for me?
    Does that make sense?
    I need to add bewick's to my list soon(you know, it's a NEED... new birds are always a need) and I don't want it to be something I overlook because I'm not prepared. Sometimes I wonder if I have run across some and didn't know.

    To me, this looks more the reddish brown of a carolina... in the field, I didn't think it was reddish brown... something seemed off/different which is why I TRIED to get photos. This was the only one. Wish it was better.


  8. This is from the Birding in Massachusetts facebook group so I am assuming it's in that area, and recent.
    It's interesting the guesses people give. Like, killdeer? It LOOKS like it has stripes on the neck but I think it's because the head is turned. I can't look at this and say "oh that's definitely a wood thrush" but it's all that's making sense to me at the moment.



  9. Bois D'Arc, southwestern Arkansas on the 15th of this month. I wish I had a whole day to explore there. Awesome place. BABY purple gallinules...

    Saw this bird up in a tree near some barn swallows. Only got one pic I guess. Could not ID it in the field at that distance but looking at the picture, I'm thinking maybe a pewee? I don't recall hearing one but then, it was a little breezy AND I was preoccupied with trying to figure out where and how to bird the location.


  10. I haven't heard back from the guy down there that said he might be able to show me around. I asked on the ARbird list and a guy that's the eBird reviewer for that area sent me an email back.
    I finally made a decision and the trip is booked... staying at a hotel in Ruston...  will likely do some birding in the Monroe area. I wish I knew someone that knew the area. Maybe I'll check to see if there's a birding in LA group on facebook.
    I need to know how many of these areas can be birded on foot and whether I'd need a boat for any.
    I think the ibis and the anhinga should be doable... those will be my target species that I actively look for and if I stumble across a purple gallinule in the process, even better.

    • Like 1
  11. Was hoping someone would have some thoughts...  though, I was planning on making that trip this week...  and now, I'm having my van looked at so that's not happening.
    I think if I do go this summer, I'm going to miss the red-cockaded woodpecker feeding and fledgling stages... which would be the best time to try and photograph them...
    but maybe I can still pursue the sparrows. We'll see...  how much traveling will I feel like doing after my Louisiana trip next week?
    Still... any thoughts on these sparrows are appreciated.

  12. quick poke around eBird bar charts looking at June in that general area and the list of birds I might need isn't very long...
    purple gallinule
    white ibis
    wood stork

    Looks like Monroe would be the best place to look for all of those... Not many recent reports in that area... white ibis and anhinga look like the best possibilities.
    IF I go, I need to leave the state with at least one life bird...  it's a must.  🙂

  13. Looking at the map, and even eBird hotspot map, there's nothing there...

    I have a friend that is planning a trip down there in a couple weeks. He's blind... they have 4 kids and two of them are a bit of a challenge at times. His wife is often worn out so this trip worries him a little, I think.
    I started joking with him, at first, that if it wasn't for my wife getting visitation of a couple of my kids, I'd pack the kids and head down with them and we could give them a hand. He kind of liked that idea. He'll have to talk to his wife first...
    After he told me it was only for a few days I got to thinking...  In all honesty, it's the birds turning the gears in my skull... ha. 
    I could ask my ex to switch the day to later in the week.......  that shouldn't be an issue.
    Provided my van is working well, I think the trip is doable...

    That ramble aside...

    Anyone familiar with the area? It's between Shreveport and Monroe...  And there's pretty much nothing there.

    I'm looking for both species suggestions as well as hotspot(or not hotspot) locations. Nothing toooooo far from Arcadia. I'll have to talk to my friend about their other options for lodging. There's a hotel there but he says he doesn't think there's a pool and they MIGHT want to have something like that so they might stay a little further away from Arcadia.
    Which reminds me... I'll also be looking at lodging suggestions. There are some campgrounds on lakes but I'm not sure they'll want to actually camp.
    (just talked to him, they might look at a hotel in Ruston

    anyway... anyone know the area and have suggestions on lodging, hotspots, or species?
    Depending on where they/we stay, I wouldn't want to bird toooo far from there. I'd be going to be a help to their family and wouldn't want to drive hours away to bird. But I'd have to do SOME birding...  🙂 
    I'm going to TRY and look at the species in that area and see what I might need to look for that might not be too difficult. I'm thinking of anghingas already... 

  14. Just now, IKLland said:

    Definitely not a grackle. 

    ha... I didn't really think so... just being honest about how not confident I'd be trying to ID this given the angle of the pose. Turn your head little birdy...  ha...

    4 minutes ago, blackburnian said:

    as well as the strong supercilium

    or eyebrow, as ignorant people like me call it.
    That was enough for me to be certain it wasn't a rusty.

    So...  if not a rusty... what is it?  You got me curious now. 🙂


  15. I'm no expert and I only see these when passing through around winter migration but, I'd expect a male rusty to be darker and a female to be lighter in color, and have a pale eyebrow.

    I wont try to ID it though. I'd want to lean towards brewer's...  or even a grackle.
    Can the bird just turn to the side a little?  HA

    • Thanks 1
  16. any experts on these?

    I'm trying to decide if I should go hunt for one. Several "known" birders in AR have gone to find them in a place they know to look for them. One guy by himself, saw one very briefly. Then two other people went to the same area and had the same experience... the bird showed up and then, gone.

    I'm looking for advice on specific habitat and behavior... favorite plants?

    This is a big pine forest where the red-cockaded woodpecker has been re-established, by the people that do that sort of thing, including a local birder and audubon field trip leader/organizer.
    A nice long road with NO traffic...  trees set up specifically for the woodpeckers help you know where to look for those. I've been there twice and got the woodpeckers one of the times, briefly...  Apparently, this time of year they're feeding young so it's a good time to watch their trees to see them going back and forth. That alone would be worth the trip(I think it's 2.5 hours, ish)
    That bachman's sparrow though...  that's the only location anywhere near me where I know I COULD track one down.
    Although, there is a campground a little ways off(from that spot) where someone reported one about 13 years ago...  so theoretically, they could be anywhere in that general area. But knowing EXACTLY what kind of habitat or plants(etc) to look for would be necessary. Around here we have horned larks... but if you don't know where to look... good luck. Same with grasshopper sparrows. The ONLY place I've had grasshopper sparrows happened to be in some lots where they had roads put in but not houses... I don't know what kind of plants grew in... LOTS of fields around LOOKED like they'd be good for grasshopper sparrows but, they're HARD to find here. So, something made that place appealing to them.

    I figure, by the sound of it, the bachman's might be similar in being rather picky about where it hangs out.

    So, any "experts" on them??? 
    If I do make the trip down(I should get my transmission looked at first, I think) it would be quite beneficial for me to get photographs for evidence... 

  17. I'm so mad I didn't get pics of the empid right before it. It was definitely an empid, had more of the greenish-gray look to it.
    I'll try to remember the undertail coverts... 
    Maybe I should have stood there longer for the first bird... maybe I would have gotten a photo eventually? Sometimes, you only have so much time. If you spend it all in one spot, what else do you miss?  😕 
    Oh well.

    I am thinking the second one is an empid but, I'm also thinking it can't be narrowed down with those photos.

    Maybe I'll go digging through some photos from other days to give you all more work. 🙂 (and me some more training.)

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