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Rusty Blackbird Confirmation


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Seen today in Menifee(Riverside county), Ca. 
 

Thinking Rusty due to the pale eye and the overall rusty coloration. The only angle I have. With a large flock of other blackbirds in an open field. 
Thanks! 
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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

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3 minutes ago, millipede said:

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

Definitely not a grackle. 

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1 minute ago, blackburnian said:

It’s off structurally and totally lacks the splotchy plumage of a Rusty as well as the strong supercilium. Also, it would be rare. 

Got it. I know it would be rare. 

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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. 🙂

 

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It would be more than rare. It would be almost extraordinary. There is only a single record for Rusty Blackbird in the May-June window on eBird in the whole state of CA, and it was at the beginning of May. RUBL’s are essentially unknown during spring migration in CA. Here is that checklist,  which shows the differences of your bird and a RUBL quite well.

https://ebird.org/checklist/S87348212

If you are going to find a RUBL in CA, it’s gonna be in winter.

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