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A Brown-capped Rosy Finch, perhaps


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  This is a bird I found on July 8 2014 when hiking at about 12,000', in an area above Leadville, Colorado.  It appears to be a Rosy Finch from online sources.  I decided breeding adult Brown-capped Rosy Finch, but I got a different opinion from a 'bird-person' more knowledgeable than I.  But, she agreed we should post on whatbird, and then I lost the memory card with the bird - but card has now been found.  I placed two pictures of the same bird in this album, and would appreciate any more definitive comments than my 'I think'. 

Here is a link to the album.  If the link does not work, if you right-click and sweep you should get an option to 'open link' -  https://photos.app.goo.gl/oTtg19bpEmuzdL6XA

Thanks.

Rich

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The other options were extensive - her full quote was as follows - clearly she knows more  than I.  And, the 'females / immatures' confuse me more.

But Brown-capped Rosy-finches are small and chubby. The photo looks slenderer, more like a thrush, and its bill looks longer than a finch’s. My first guesses were female or immature Townsend’s Solitaire, female or immature Varied Thrush (way out of its range – but they’re famous for wandering), or one of the pipits (Sprague’s or American). After consulting big Sibley, I’d go with American Pipit, non-breeding adult. 

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50 minutes ago, Richard Larsen said:

The other options were extensive - her full quote was as follows - clearly she knows more  than I.  And, the 'females / immatures' confuse me more.

But Brown-capped Rosy-finches are small and chubby. The photo looks slenderer, more like a thrush, and its bill looks longer than a finch’s. My first guesses were female or immature Townsend’s Solitaire, female or immature Varied Thrush (way out of its range – but they’re famous for wandering), or one of the pipits (Sprague’s or American). After consulting big Sibley, I’d go with American Pipit, non-breeding adult. 

That's a finch bill, and the bird looks just like the Brown-capped Rosy-Finch in Sibley.  None of the other species are possibilities.  Maybe she was looking a different photo?

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Yeah, agreed - none of those other options work. Townsend's Solitaires are long and skinny and light gray with strong white spectacles, not to mention peachy colored patches on the wings. Thrushes are big-bellied birds with longer skinnier beaks. Varied Thrushes are bright orange with a strong supercilium. Pipits are much lighter than this and have strong stripes down the front. (Also their posture is kind of blackbird-like.)

Just looking at this guy, make sure you keep in mind all of the characteristics. Measure the beak relative to head width. This guy definitely has that thick beak of a finch. Secondly, its shape is that of a finch. Tail length, body length, and the rest of the overall proportions look great (looks very "small and chubby"). Lastly, the coloration - very dark all over with distinctive rosy on the shoulders and belly.

As far as females/immature, most of the time females or immature birds (fancy term for young) are blotchier and not as distinct as the adult males. Also, immature birds generally show a yellow gape which this guy obviously doesn't have.

Just a photo of Rosy-Finches... notice how the one towards the front has his neck extended whereas the one in the middle is squashed down. Your bird is well within the range of a small and chubby finch to an extended finch.

DSC_0155BrownCappedGrayCappedRosys2413_f

I hope this helps you and the "bird person"!:classic_tongue:

Edited by Melierax
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19 hours ago, Richard Larsen said:

The other options were extensive - her full quote was as follows - clearly she knows more  than I.  And, the 'females / immatures' confuse me more.

But Brown-capped Rosy-finches are small and chubby. The photo looks slenderer, more like a thrush, and its bill looks longer than a finch’s. My first guesses were female or immature Townsend’s Solitaire, female or immature Varied Thrush (way out of its range – but they’re famous for wandering), or one of the pipits (Sprague’s or American). After consulting big Sibley, I’d go with American Pipit, non-breeding adult. 

Why exactly would she be suggesting American Pipit? Are we looking at the same photo here, just out of curiosity? If not, she’s probably not as knowledgeable of a “bird person” as you think :classic_tongue:

 

Edited by akiley
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5 minutes ago, akiley said:

Why exactly would she be suggesting American Pipit? Are we looking at the same photo here, just out of curiosity? If not, she’s probably not as knowledgeable of a “bird person” as you think :classic_tongue:

 

That should say “if so”, not “if not”. Not sure why we can’t edit posts after 5 minutes.

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