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Bigdaddy44

Black-vented Shearwater

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This would be a lifer for me.  These were taken on 01/08/19 on the way out to Santa Cruz Island of the Channel Islands National Park.  Pretty sure this is a Black-vented Shearwater, but would like confirmation from those who may have more experience with these guys.   

  

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12 hours ago, akiley said:

Did you get Island Scrub-Jay?

Yes.  If anyone decides to go for the ISJ, go to Prisoner's Harbor.  I had several encounters and everyone I spoke to said that it is basically a for sure thing at this location.     

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1 hour ago, Bigdaddy44 said:

Anyone else have any input on the Shearwater?

I believe it is, but don't want to claim it 100%, especially for a lifer. If you want, I can share this thread with another group on Facebook where someone would be able to say for sure. 

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I would appreciate it.  What is the Facebook group?  I may join that group.  Doesn't seem like there are many responses on this blog anymore.  

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1 hour ago, Bigdaddy44 said:

I would appreciate it.  What is the Facebook group?  I may join that group.  Doesn't seem like there are many responses on this blog anymore.  

Yes, this group has never recovered its former size since the website crashed for the entire summer. The group is called "What's this Bird" run by the ABA. It's a good group. I can share it on there for you, unless you would like to post it yourself.

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30 minutes ago, akiley said:

Yes, this group has never recovered its former size since the website crashed for the entire summer. The group is called "What's this Bird" run by the ABA. It's a good group. I can share it on there for you, unless you would like to post it yourself.

Thanks.  I sent in the request to join.  

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9 hours ago, akiley said:

Yes, this group has never recovered its former size since the website crashed for the entire summer. The group is called "What's this Bird" run by the ABA. It's a good group. I can share it on there for you, unless you would like to post it yourself.

Can you suggest any other ID or chat web sites that aren't based on Facebook or Twaddle?  I'm a bit paranoid regarding those services.

Thanks either way!

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16 hours ago, Bigdaddy44 said:

I would appreciate it.  What is the Facebook group?  I may join that group.  Doesn't seem like there are many responses on this blog anymore.  

It definitely is way slower than it used to be. I kept looking at this thread, but I have zero experience with pelagic birds, so I'm of no use!

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I also stink with these kinds of birds...  So much that if someone didn't say "what shearwater is this" I might not even have it down to that family right away... HA...

But, I just stared at the drawings in Sibley's 2nd edition and my VERY inexperienced opinion would be to agree with you. The marls on the underside of the wing, the dark seems to be on the tail and not the belly so much, just about no distinct pattern on the head, just all brown up there. That all lined up with what I was looking at in the guide.
I compared the different shearwaters in the guide to each other and then to these pictures... looking at those distinct marks... under the wings + the tail and belly + the head/throat/neck area... All looks good for black-vented to me...

BUT again... I'm not even a novice at these particular birds so hopefully someone more experienced will throw out some thoughts on it. 🙂

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10 hours ago, Charlie Spencer said:

Can you suggest any other ID or chat web sites that aren't based on Facebook or Twaddle?  I'm a bit paranoid regarding those services.

Thanks either way!

I don't know of anything, unfortunately. I've always refused to make a Facebook account but a couple of months ago I just decided to do it. There are so many great birding groups and pages I'm now a part of. I was missing out on a lot by avoiding making an account. I reluctantly did it, but don't regret it at all. The main bird ID group is "What's this Bird" from the ABA. Also groups for Advanced Bird ID, Juncos, North American Gulls, photography pages, etc.

Edited by akiley
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35 minutes ago, akiley said:

I don't know of anything, unfortunately. I've always refused to make a Facebook account but a couple of months ago I just decided to do it. There are so many great birding groups and pages I'm now a part of. I was missing out on a lot by avoiding making an account. I reluctantly did it, but don't regret it at all. The main bird ID group is "What's this Bird" from the ABA. Also groups for Advanced Bird ID, Juncos, North American Gulls, photography pages, etc.

I can understand why organizations like ABA would leverage Facebook for their forums.  It saves them having to develop and maintain their own forums (and the possibility of a failure :classic_tongue:).  It provides more visibility, easier access, and a larger built-in audience than a stand-alone site.  But as a network administrator, social media sites give me the heebie jeebies (sorry for the technical IT terminology).  I've read too many reports of data disclosures, both accidental and intentional.  I guess I could create an account with faked data linked to a Google mailbox I wouldn't use for anything else, but that makes me queasy too.

This site may not get the traffic it used to but I'm happy enough with it.  Thanks anyway.

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On 1/30/2019 at 5:28 PM, Bee_ keeper said:

This is one that I've come across.  Looks pretty interesting and comprehensive:

https://www.birdforum.net

I took a look at birdforum.net during this weekend's shutdown, and promptly tucked my tail between my legs and slunk off under the bed.  Man, that's one busy site!  Subforums out the wazoo!

I disliked the ID forum being global, not split up by continent.  I like to use the ID forum here to build my skills, but I don't want to wade through a world of birds that I'm likely never going to see.  There were individual forums by state, but A) those are smaller regions than I'm interested in, and B) many of them (including SC, NC, GA) had little activity.   I'd definitely look at the state forums if I lived in TX, MA, NJ, AZ, CA, FL, and other states with more birds to talk about and more birders to talk about them.

But thanks for the suggestion!

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On 2/5/2019 at 8:43 AM, Charlie Spencer said:

I took a look at birdforum.net ......

I basically agree with everything you've said here.  And ha! yes, I was checking it out last weekend too, to ease withdrawal symptoms..

The activity feed (and entire layout here) is so user-friendly; you can catch every post and still screen for your own relevance.  Every post/photo here is a learning tool.

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1 hour ago, Bee_ keeper said:

I basically agree with everything you've said here.  And ha! yes, I was checking it out last weekend too, to ease withdrawal symptoms..

The activity feed (and entire layout here) is so user-friendly; you can catch every post and still screen for your own relevance.  Every post/photo here is a learning tool.

I did notice a couple of posts on birdforum.net from our own @The Bird Nuts!

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2 hours ago, Charlie Spencer said:

I did notice a couple of posts on birdforum.net from our own @The Bird Nuts!

I have posted one picture on the ABA facebook page (a while back).  I had tried it on this forum first.  I got some opinions here, but they didn't feel like strong opinions.  So I decided to try facebook (I got confirmation to the opinions I heard here).  One of the respondents to my post on facebook had an very similar name to our @akiley  :classic_wink:.  I guess akiley had missed the original post on this forum.

The facebook group has a gazillion members.  I think this is a two-edged sword.  Obviously the page provides access to some outstanding experts and in my case I got a good result.  However, there are lots of people on facebook who seem willing express confident opinions in spite of an apparent lack of ability.  It is hard to know who to believe.  One thing I like about this forum is the smaller, focused population.  You "get to know" everyone and can figure out who are experts pretty quickly.  Better yet, people on this forum seem very willing to say "I'm not an expert on these, but...".  I appreciate everyone's opinions, but it is nice to know who has relatively more experience.  I also feel there is more discussion here (e.g. sharing rationale for one species vs another).  Its a better place to learn.

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I love @millipede's work.  A knowledge disclaimer claimer when necessary, a detail description of the research done, and an identification with the supporting field marks, behaviors, etc.  There are a few others with similar styles; his / hers is just the most recent post I'd read.

Edited by Charlie Spencer
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I completely agree with @Jim W and @Charlie Spencer's feelings about the Facebook groups and Birdforum.net.  I don't have a Facebook account either, but when I occasionally look through those birding Facebook pages I cringe.  It seems Birdforum members either don't give enough details on why they think it's a certain species or they argue for days on one thread (often about an irrelevant subject)! 😒

This forum is still the best out there!

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