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Calling all the Dowitchers experts. Nob Hill Pond, Redwood Shores, CA


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I have been trying to get a good photo of the Dowitchers to ID them…. Didn’t hear them unfortunately, but I think the there are both short and long billed Dowitchers in the photo.

11/9/2021 Nob Hill Pond, Redwood Shores, CA @  4:45pm 

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Thanks in advance!

Bill

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Well, dowitchers in basic plumage that are silent are best responsibly left as LBDO/SBDO. That being said, there are some obvious (to me anyways) Long-billed candidates in this photo. Remember, bill length varies within a species and typically by sex as well. So, only individuals at the very end of either spectrum should even be considered in the absence of additional field marks and/or voice.

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@DLecy Agreed. I have been listing the flocks as SBDO/LBDO.  I was thinking that the photo had “variety” which might allow the experts here to make an ID so posted to see.  Others have been reporting both SBDO and LBDO at this location.  Thanks for the LBDO confirmation.

@AlexHenry Agreed as well as there is so much overlap between the SBDO/LBDO that they are difficult to ID from a photo.  As DLecy replied, only the ones at the ends of the spectrum are distinguishable and thought I might have some in the photo that the more experienced could possibly ID.  

@Charlie Spencer When you develop that method… can you share please?.  

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3 hours ago, Pro2typer said:

I have been listing the flocks as SBDO/LBDO.  I was thinking that the photo had “variety” which might allow the experts here to make an ID so posted to see. Others have been reporting both SBDO and LBDO at this location.

@AlexHenry Agreed as well as there is so much overlap between the SBDO/LBDO that they are difficult to ID from a photo.  As DLecy replied, only the ones at the ends of the spectrum are distinguishable and thought I might have some in the photo that the more experienced could possibly ID.  

Sorry I was pretty rude in my previous comments (it was right before I went to sleep, not a good idea…)

I definitely think it’s a good call to use SBDO/LBDO whenever you are unsure.

The variety you mention seems to me to be most likely due to intraspecific variation. If I HAD to put a name on these birds, my guess would be that every single bird in the photo is Long-billed. But I just can’t say that with any degree of certainty 

 

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