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Good guess because it was one of merlins suggestions but do you see how he is kind of upright and the tips of his wings kind of hang down a bit like an owl? Does he have tufts in his head or something? It was hard to tell without getting too close. If you watch the video you will see it move it’s head at the very last second which I think is helpful. Thank you so much for the response.

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I should also mention the stripes on it’s back. The bands are clear in only 1 of these photos which was taken after I wiped the lens and in HD

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1 hour ago, Shellwake said:

If you watch the video you will see it move it’s head at the very last second which I think is helpful.

without that last second there I was going to question how anyone had a clue here. Sometimes bad pictures aren't better than none... 😛 
Sometimes you just can't help it. I've had to give up trying to ID a LOT of birds from the lousy photos I've gotten, mostly at a distance or if they were moving too much(which birds do)  HA

There's a lot going on in the photos that will play tricks with your eyes. That last second in the video pretty much nails it being a thrush... I personally wouldn't have ventured a guess very quickly but.............

Actually, I'm going to ask these guys and gals what they're seeing that would suggest hermit and not any other thrush... out of curiosity.
None of them should really be in Maine right now(at least according to All About Birds)
hmmm... this is why I like to use more than one source... All About Birds shows them in Maine in summer only with swainson's and gray-cheeked there in migration(which is not now)
BUT....  eBird bar charts show that hermits are potentially seen all winter there(again, this is what different sources are good for) while the other thrushes are NEVER reported there this time of year.
That all supports Hermit but... I'd still love to hear more support for why it's a hermit. For my own curiosity and knowledge/learning. 🙂 

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It wasn’t a hermit thrush. It was too big and I saw one of those in December. I didn’t know why a little bird was running along the ground in the park and it was so cute I thought my heart was going to explode. I asked some birders that were trying to take photos of the vagrant Great Black Hawk in the same park and one of them said that it was a Hermit Thrush. Seemed to fit. 🙂

 

Thank you for trying. Somebody on a local forum told me that it might be an Owl-Hawk and that they have seen them in their own yard. So far that’s a really great fit but please tell me what you think of that answer?

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11 minutes ago, Shellwake said:

 

Thank you for trying. Somebody on a local forum told me that it might be an Owl-Hawk and that they have seen them in their own yard. So far that’s a really great fit but please tell me what you think of that answer?

Hawk Owls do not have white bellies.

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It looks to me like something is stuck on the birds upper beak/head area. That last frame in the video when he puts his head down you can see something move with his head that looks unnatural to me?

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For what it's worth, I agree with a Thrush. Apparent size of a solitary bird can be highly deceptive.

Edited by meghann

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It is absolutely a thrush with that cream-colored belly, breast, throat, and eyering, the brown back and head, the dark spots on the breast, and the dark throat stripes.  I think the OP is not seeing the position of the head correctly.  It is actually keeping its beak up above its eyes (which is typical of thrushes).

On 2/5/2019 at 10:35 PM, millipede said:

Actually, I'm going to ask these guys and gals what they're seeing that would suggest hermit and not any other thrush... out of curiosity.

Bird Nut #2 is quite confident it's a Hermit based on "GISS", but I can agree only because of probability.  (When you have been birding every single day for three years as BN#2 has :eek!:, you get really good at identifying birds based on general impression!)

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56 minutes ago, Shellwake said:

It was too big and I saw one of those in December. I didn’t know why a little bird was...

 

41 minutes ago, meghann said:

Apparent size of a solitary bird can be highly deceptive.

exactly... 
For just a little while(just not) I struggled with size in the picture because of the bricks in the background. I then had to realize that the bird is forward from the bricks by enough that it makes the bird look much bigger than it is.
And in the field... I don't know if it's just me, my glasses, or what as I've not had many people suggest they've had the same phenomena happen but, for me, even angle seems to affect how I see a bird. Birds that are lower(especially below my feet such as in a ditch) ALWAYS look smaller to me. I can be at one location seeing killdeer at similar distances that appear different sizes but aren't. Size is a tricky thing.

After having hermit thrush suggested, no matter how many times I look at this I can't see anything besides a thrush... and all those thrushes are pretty similar in size. I'm not seeing anything in the picture that would lead me to believe this is a LARGE bird but more of a thrush sized bird.

I think the bird nuts got this about the original idea, the impression of an owl. There's a brown mark that points down that makes it look like the beak of an owl but in the first picture AND at the end of the video, the bill is pointing up and away, to like the 2 o'clock direction. or ENE. That brown pointing down is likely brown feathers from the neck area as the head was turned to our right(its left.) 
If you study it closely you can see a thrush like tail, nothing like you'd see with an owl or any form of raptor.  And if you play the end of the video over and over you'll see that thrush/robin like bill turn upwards.

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8 minutes ago, The Bird Nuts said:

Bird Nut #2 is quite confident it's a Hermit based on "GISS", but I can agree only because of probability.  (When you have been birding every single day for three years as BN#2 has :eek!:, you get really good at identifying birds based on general impression!)

not to doubt their ability by any means... I'd personally want more than a "feel" with these images. I'd lean towards hermit based on location and date and what's typically reported in that area this time of year. Probability as you put it.

I wish the site never crashed so I could look it up. I had posted a thrush picture on here once(might have been someone else's picture and I was curious) and someone was able to comment with finer details like the length of the primaries or secondaries to suggest which thrush it wsa. Maybe I'll be that good some day... but even with that skill, it's hard to see anything in these pictures... in my opinion. :)

 

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43 minutes ago, birdbrain22 said:

This is without a doubt a Hermit Thrush... 100%

 

I trust your judgement here, especially since that seems to be the consensus among many... but is there something in particular you can point out to explain the certainty? I just NEED to know. 🙂

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8 hours ago, millipede said:

I trust your judgement here, especially since that seems to be the consensus among many... but is there something in particular you can point out to explain the certainty? I just NEED to know. 🙂

Pretty sure multiple people have already said why this is a Hermit Thrush, just to recap: color pattern, posture, etc., plus the fact that this is Maine in winter and Hermit is far and away the likeliest species of spotted thrush at that location.  If you look at eBird bar charts it's literally the only option for winter in Maine.  Can we absolutely, positively rule out a freak Gray-cheeked Thrush in the middle of winter in Maine from these shots?  Probably not.  But the odds of this being a Hermit are effectively 100%. 

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This is the bird looking directly at the camera with it’s body facing the other direction. The green part I colored in is where a leaf is partially covering the bird’s face. The bird was dove sized or larger. I was less than 20ft away but have a crappy camera on my iphone. I would guess that the bricks are about 10 to 15 feet behind the tree. The tree was only about 20 feet tall as well. I was close enough to the bird to know that it was not a hermit thrush. They are cute and little. Not predator like. 

 

Thank you for still trying to help and tolerating the crappy iPhone 8 photo quality which has made this so difficult as it does with anything more than 5 feet in front of me.

EFD70E92-749B-4038-B517-BF1CAF02A148.jpeg

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19 hours ago, Kerri said:

It looks to me like something is stuck on the birds upper beak/head area. That last frame in the video when he puts his head down you can see something move with his head that looks unnatural to me?

Thank you, my fault for not pointing out the leaf sooner. I tried to find an angle without it but the trees had lots of little branches with dead leaves and fruit. I couldn’t tell whether or not he/she had tufts on it’s head but I didn’t dare get any closer because I didn’t want to scare the bird. I think it was trying to hunt.

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19 hours ago, meghann said:

Hawk Owls do not have white bellies.

The camera wasn’t good enough to capture any pattern on the belly. 😞   Thank you for all of the help. Again, sorry about the crappy camera. Hopefully the new picture and the distances help some.

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18 hours ago, millipede said:

 

exactly... 
For just a little while(just not) I struggled with size in the picture because of the bricks in the background. I then had to realize that the bird is forward from the bricks by enough that it makes the bird look much bigger than it is.
And in the field... I don't know if it's just me, my glasses, or what as I've not had many people suggest they've had the same phenomena happen but, for me, even angle seems to affect how I see a bird. Birds that are lower(especially below my feet such as in a ditch) ALWAYS look smaller to me. I can be at one location seeing killdeer at similar distances that appear different sizes but aren't. Size is a tricky thing.

After having hermit thrush suggested, no matter how many times I look at this I can't see anything besides a thrush... and all those thrushes are pretty similar in size. I'm not seeing anything in the picture that would lead me to believe this is a LARGE bird but more of a thrush sized bird.

I think the bird nuts got this about the original idea, the impression of an owl. There's a brown mark that points down that makes it look like the beak of an owl but in the first picture AND at the end of the video, the bill is pointing up and away, to like the 2 o'clock direction. or ENE. That brown pointing down is likely brown feathers from the neck area as the head was turned to our right(its left.) 
If you study it closely you can see a thrush like tail, nothing like you'd see with an owl or any form of raptor.  And if you play the end of the video over and over you'll see that thrush/robin like bill turn upwards.

This tree is 2 streets from where I live and I walk by it a lot. I see other birds in it. Especially, Robins and Waxwings. Since I go by the tree and see other birds in it so frequently I think that the size is accurate in this case but that was a smart idea and something I will keep in mind for birds in less familiar areas in the future. At least I’m learning important birding lessons.

 

Hermit Thrush are sooooo cute. I wish we could stop talking about them because I keep thinking of that one I met in December. Running along the ground with it’s cute little stick legs and doe eyes. I wanted to take it home with me. It was so adorable I didn’t know what to do but I had to do something because it was so just running around being so cute. So, I did what I could. I threw peanuts at it because I happened to have peanuts. It was unimpressed and used it’s cute little stick legs to run away.  😕    I hope we meet again.

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Going back and forth in my head as to whether I should walk away from the conversation or say/ask a few more things and just pray I don't upset anyone...  hmmm...

4 hours ago, IvoryBillHope said:

Pretty sure multiple people have already said why this is a Hermit Thrush, just to recap: color pattern, posture, etc., plus the fact that this is Maine in winter and Hermit is far and away the likeliest species of spotted thrush at that location.  If you look at eBird bar charts it's literally the only option for winter in Maine.  Can we absolutely, positively rule out a freak Gray-cheeked Thrush in the middle of winter in Maine from these shots?  Probably not.  But the odds of this being a Hermit are effectively 100%. 

I hope you can forgive my persistence in asking questions. I already brought up eBird so I'm aware of that... and general shape, posture, color can't do more than say thrush in my eyes. To say we can't rule out something unlikely and then say 100% just doesn't add up to me. Not trying to pick a fight but when someone says this is 100% a _____ and I can't see it with my eyes, I want to know what details are making it SO certain. Not because I'm doubting but simply because I just don't see it. I myself would rule this hermit based on what SHOULD be there, if I were reporting it, but I just don't see something in these pictures that tells me "100%" hermit. So, I ask. My mind is not always satisfied by the word of someone that does actually know better than I. So, that's where I'm coming from on that.
 

Shellwake, this will be my last response as I don't want to get in an argument. There's NOTHING in the picture that shows a large bird and definitely nothing that shows a predator type bird. That's not an owl or hawk at all. In some of the pictures and especially at the end of the video you get a very clear view of the bill that matches perfectly for a thrush. That's certain. The face and throat pattern supports thrush.
That last picture shows what looks like bars on the wing but that's actually, at least what I'm seeing, a branch in front of the bird. Those lines are not there from other angles. 

I can't say what you saw but everything in the pictures and video says thrush. They're not big birds but they're not tiny either. And what you see can be affected by the slightest things. Lighting for instance... I'll often see something VERY differently with my eyes, camera, and binoculars. I've seen objects that I was sure were birds and weren't... and I've listened to stories of some VERY experienced and knowledgeable birders pointing towards the sky only to have someone else let them know it was an airplane.  (HA)  Our eyes can deceive us.
I don't want to sound like I'm insulting you(which is why I don't want to continue the conversation longer) but this group of people knows their birds pretty well.  I don't think anyone is going to change their mind on calling this bird a thrush.
I'm trying my best(which isn't always good) to say all of this with kindness and sincerity. I don't want to upset someone and have them leave and not return or something.
You can take the information you've been given and listen to the little details that people have pointed out or you can just disagree and leave it. But this is what we're seeing.
I looked at some pictures of hermit thrushes and TRIED to find some with similar poses... nothing exact...  but, here are a few...
One

Two

Three

No hard feelings I hope.  And don't feel bad if you're not satisfied with this and have to give up. I've seen a LOT of birds where I still wish I knew what they were but had to sort of "let go" of trying to figure them out. It's okay... doesn't feel like it sometimes but, that's what I tell myself. :)

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I have outlined the bird and even colored it in (the branches I left white). If this doesn't convince you it's a thrush (with it's belly facing toward the viewer), I guess nothing will.

thrush.thumb.jpg.c36422288eb6acef7a2eb4fcd901a847.jpg

 

Edited by The Bird Nuts
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I’m sorry that you there is no tone of voice on the internet. If there were you would know i’m joking. I’m not angry that people are talking about a Hermit Thrush. I’m just frustrated but not in an angry way. I feel the same urges that women feel when they see a cute baby when I see a cute animal. Sometimes it’s frustrating to have the urge to cuddle the crap out of something cute and not be able to because it would die from stress. 

The Hermit Thrush was so cute. I was so in love with it when it ran along the ground and then looked all around so cute. I really had to fight that urge to have an illegal pet. It was really tough. I mean come on. You know what I’m talking about.

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The Bird Nuts, you are the most patient person I have ever witnessed.  

I would have given up long ago.

Scott

p.s.  Absolutely a hermit thrush.

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22 hours ago, The Bird Nuts said:

I have outlined the bird and even colored it in (the branches I left white). If this doesn't convince you it's a thrush (with it's belly facing toward the viewer), I guess nothing will.

thrush.thumb.jpg.c36422288eb6acef7a2eb4fcd901a847.jpg

 

I am both grateful that your work has finally allowed me to make out the details in these photos :classic_laugh:, and appalled by my total ignorance of how you did it :classic_blink:.

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