[wisb] Re: RFI:Finch ID

Here's a House Finch that's very similar to Sidney's bird...

http://www.whatbird.com/Forums/forums/storage/1410/192148/Male%20House%20Finch...06-23-09%20005_edited.jpg
 
and here is a nice side by side of the two species..helps put key id points 
into perspective...

http://www.flickr.com/photos/27254860@N04/4361676211/in/pool-1023278@N22/



Steven Lubahn
Cudahy


> Shucks. I may have had a beer in me when I whipped that ID off.
> Here's why I called it a House Finch. He's almost too red for a Purple
> Finch. I disagree with Chris that brilliant red color is a good ID mark for
> purple finch. They can both be pretty red, but if it's a Purple Finch I
> suspect there's a little bit of shift here either from the camera or my
> laptop - I've never seen a Purple Finch as red as the birds in Sid's
> photos. The bill shape is suspect for purple finch - they have conical
> bills with an even culmen - house finches are more rounded, usually. The
> face pattern is also inconsistent with Purple Finch - they usually show a
> strong malar stripe, a mustache of sorts. It shows up as a LIGHTER
> purple/red bar coming down from the bill. Sid's bird has nothing here, or
> if anything it's a blotch. While it does have a brown eye line, this is
> consistent with both species. It also has a brownish cap, which is
> consistent with House Finch but not Purple.
> 
> I think I agree with Chris that the bill is pretty big. I also agree that
> it isn't very (or much at all) streaky. That appears to me to be the
> biggest problem with calling this a House Finch. Googling for House Finch
> images, I can find very few that lack streaking on the sides. But the angle
> ain't that great.
> 
> So. I still tend toward calling this a House Finch. I'd be curious about
> other people's thoughts, and perhaps about whether folks have photos of
> unstreaky house finches.
> 
> If I got this wrong (and I won't accept being wrong by vote, you'll have to
> convince me!) I certainly will feel foolish. I thought I had these two
> better pegged. But that's the fun part - I've been birding since I was
> ittle, and I'm still learning a ton of new stuff.
> 
> Jesse
> 
> On Thu, Mar 1, 2012 at 5:27 PM, Chris West <little_blue_birdie@xxxxxxx>wrote:
> 
>> Tom and all,
>> For reference purposes, Sid's photos are of a Purple Finch.  The bird in
>> Sid's photos has a larger bill than would be expected on a House Finch,
>> lack of any streaking at all, brilliant red coloring all the way down
>> through the chest, flanks and belly, and, most importantly, has a brown
>> line through the eye which accentuates the red supercilium. I've found this
>> combination of field marks to be highly reliable when identifying Purple vs
>> House Finch.
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> Happy Birding! --Chris W, Richland County Interpretive Naturalist
>> Mississippi Explorer Cruises
>> http://mississippiexplorer.com/chris@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
>> http://swallowtailedkite.blogspot.com/
>> http://www.nabirding.com/http://www.flickr.com/photos/swallowtailphoto
>> 
>> "The beauty and genius of a work of art may be reconceived, though its
>> first material expression be destroyed; a vanished harmony may yet again
>> inspire the composer; but when the last individual of a race of living
>> things breathes no more, another heaven and another earth must pass before
>> such a one can be again."
>> 
>> (From William Beebe's "The Bird: Its Form and Function," 1906)
>> 
>>> From: tcwood729@xxxxxxxxx
>>> To: Wisbirdn@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
>>> Subject: [wisb] RFI:Finch ID
>>> Date: Thu, 1 Mar 2012 17:17:36 -0600
>>> 
>>> Sidney Hamm's last post about the finch he photgraphed at Bong has me
>>> realizing I have a lot to learn about Finch ID.
>>> Because I live in the southern part of the state, I see very few Purple
>>> Finches during the year, and I'm usually looking up at them. Those of you
>>> who
>>> live in the northern tier of counties probably see them regularly at your
>>> feeders. Do any of the Purple Finches you see have as much brown on the
>>> crown and cheeks as the bird in Sidney's photo?
>>> The House Finches I see around here all have streaking on the underparts
>> and
>>> this is a major field mark mentioned in the field guides. So, conversely,
>>> does anyone see House Finches with unstreaked underparts as seen on the
>>> photo?
>>> I find color to be the least useful ID mark with bird photos on my
>> laptop.
>>> Depending on how I have the screen tilted I can make the bird look
>>> anywhere from the raspberry red of a Purple Finch to the brighter red of
>> a
>>> House Finch. This is due to the characteristics of an LCD display.
>>> The bill looks large for a House Finch, but perhaps that is because
>>> Sidney's lens puts the bird right in our face. We can't see the tail
>> notch
>>> which would help with the ID.
>>> Thanks in advance for any advice.
>>> 
>>> Thomas Wood, Menomonee Falls, Waukesha County
>>> 
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>> 
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>> 
> 
> 
> -- 
> Jesse Ellis
> Post-doctoral Researcher
> Dept. of Zoology
> University of Wisconsin - Madison
> Madison, Dane Co, WI
> 
> 
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