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Bad photo, I think it may be a duck? Please take a look. So.WI

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10/13. Thanks to my slow lens this is the only shot I got of this bird before it disappeared behind some trees. This area was by a lake, and the only birds I saw on it earlier were a couple pied-billed grebes and some tree swallows. I have looked at this photo for so long I don't know if it's a duck, hawk, or robin anymore.  The first photo is the original with just a touch of shadow lightening; the second has been lightened and sharpened, but the color wasn't touched. It was the golden hour btw so I don't think this bird was orange.

Thanks so much for any suggestions. 






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That wing pattern most definitely matches the red-bellied woodpecker. Seems like a lot of red for that bird, but I suppose the golden hour and a bad photo can create that. That would also explain the short forked tail that I originally thought were duck feet ? .
I must say though I was hoping it was the Red-shouldered Hawk as that would've been a lifer for me ?
I just used a different editing software for this photo, and the head definitely looks more woodpecker in this one with less red. Next time I think I'll desaturate to get a different perspective.
Thanks so much!




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7 hours ago, Charlie Spencer said:

The tail looks too short for a Red-Bellied to me.

Do you remember if the wing beats were continuous?  Red-Bellieds fold their wings in and glide every two or three wing-beats, rising on the beats and sinking when they glide.   I think a Red-Shouldered would flap more continuously.

I am 100% sure this is a Red-bellied Woodpecker. I think the angle creates a perceptional distortion, making the tail appear shorter than it actually is. Not to mention, depending on the way the bird flexes its feathers, the tail may appear smaller or larger.

Here is another Red-bellied Woodpecker for comparison. That white half moon pattern is pretty unmistakable; check out those primaries!



Edited by Jimmyos
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