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Hawk/kestrql blue?!

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Yellow-crowned Night-Heron

Great Blue Heron

A gigantic Mountain Bluebird

The problem with eyewitness testimony is that eyewitnesses are generally really poor at it. There is an extensive -- and I mean EXTENSIVE -- literature on the fallibility of eyewitness reports. Our brains are incredibly good at MIS-interpreting information. There are no bird species that occur regularly in New Jersey that are entirely blue. Mountain Bluebird has occurred, but it eats mice even more infrequently than does Merlin. New or inexperienced birders are regularly stumped in situations of seeing common species in poor or odd lighting, situations that experienced birders have learned to account for by making weird mistakes earlier in their birding lives.


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An color can be subjective. I recall a question in the last couple of days about a 'blue' bird that turned out to be a Brown-headed Nuthatch, a bird I've always thought of as gray.  Vireo legs look gray to me, not blue as everyone else perceives them (or at least claims to; I think it's a conspiracy).

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