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Help with Redpolls - Canadian Arctic

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Hi there everyone!

This week I was in Tuktoyaktuk, Northwest Territories (along the Arctic coast in Canada's Western Arctic), and I was having a lot of trouble separating Common and Hoary Redpolls. It didn't help that they seemed to be mostly juveniles, and the adults are probably getting pretty worn at this point. As far as I can tell (from published range maps and eBird reports) both species occur at this location, but I don't know whether to expect them in mixed flocks, or what. Many of the birds I saw could easily have been Common Redpolls, but some seemed whiter, and I thought some were likely Hoary. Here are links to the best photos I was able to get (digiscoping through my bins with my cell phone) of Hoary candidates:



These two sets of photos may or may not be the same individual bird. I wasn't able to keep track (they were part of a small flock).

Can anyone confirm for me that the birds in these photos are or aren't Hoary Redpolls?


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The first set of photos appear to show a Hoary Redpoll due to the lack of dark markings on the undertail coverts, although I would wait for more opinions.

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