[TN-Bird] Re: Eagle Bend Fish Hatchery

  • From: kde@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • To: Michael Todd <birder1@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Mon, 12 Aug 2013 11:36:53 -0400 (EDT)

Good points.  I glossed over 1814 too quickly.  Size would be a good 
clue in real life.  Upper breast is more heavily streaked like a Pec but 
doesn't show as strong demarcation... maybe a female?  Yellow bill base 
should have been the kicker... I missed that.  Agreed.  Adult Pectoral.

Dean Edwards
Knoxville, TN

On Mon, 12 Aug 2013, Michael Todd wrote:

> Dean/All,
> Thanks Dean for taking the time to give some detailed answers! I agree almost 
> totally:
> On the Dowitcher, I also think Short-billed on bill shape with downward kink 
> towards end, very pale coloration below blending to white, and the sparse but 
> pretty uniform spotting down down breastsides and flanks. Long-billed lose 
> the barring more readily than Short-billed, so that by August they usually 
> have markings heaviest at breast sides and very light to absent along flanks. 
> Better/additional looks would be nice on this bird though.
> 1814 I would call an adult Pectoral, with the long primary extension and 
> yellowish bill base.
> Good Birding!!
> Mike Todd
> McKenzie, TN
> birder1@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
> www.pbase.com/mctodd
> ________________________________
>  From: "kde@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx" <kde@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
> To: Sharon Monett <sbm4him@xxxxxxxxx> 
> Cc: Tennessee Birds <tn-bird@xxxxxxxxxxxxx> 
> Sent: Monday, August 12, 2013 9:25 AM
> Subject: [TN-Bird] Re: Eagle Bend Fish Hatchery
> See my notes below...
> Dean Edwards
> Knoxville, TN
> On Mon, 12 Aug 2013, Sharon Monett wrote:
> > 1574: Least sandpiper seems to be the consensus.
> Correct. Juvenile.  Note the fresh plumage and the pattern of the 
> scapulars (the feathers just over the folded wing on the back)... black 
> center with rusty orange edges and white tips.  These white tips on the 
> mantle (center part of the back) make two white lines that form a V.  The 
> white tips are a key point to look for in Least SP, and I will come back 
> to that below.  Also note the yellow legs which help distinguish Least 
> from other peeps... this can be a good point if seen but should not be an 
> end-all-be-all field mark... other peeps can rarely have yellowish legs or 
> legs covered in yellow-looking mud or Least can have legs covered in dark 
> mud, etc.  Finally, note how the coverts (small feathers covering the 
> wings) and tertials (wing feathers covering the tail) are also dark 
> centered with rusty orange edges giving a uniform appearance to the back 
> (except for the white spots).  Remember this for later.
> > 1675: Spotted, maybe winter plumage?
> Correct but a juvenile.
> > 1688: No guesses yet
> Spotted SP.  Looks like a molting adult as there appears to be some 
> spotting underneath.  These guys are IDable in flight from great distance 
> by their stiff-winged flight style.  Here, note the white wing stripe and 
> all dark tail and rump.  Also note the white eyering.
> > 1713: One guess for semipalmated sandpiper, one guess for Least.
> Juvenile Least SP.  Compare with 1574.  yellow legs, scapular pattern, 
> etc.  Coverts and tertials are more contrasty than in 1574 with buffy 
> edges instead of rusty orange but still good for a Least.
> > 1746: Consensus is Dowitcher; no one so far ventured a guess as to whether
> > it's short-billed or long-billed.
> I'm going to go with adult "hendersoni" Short-billed Dowitcher.  Note the 
> worn state of the feathers clearly indicating an adult, still mostly in 
> breeding plumage.  The orange wash to the underparts goes all the way to 
> the tail (eliminates "griseus" SB Dowitcher but not LB).  The spotting up 
> top and small chevrons on the flanks (rather than heavy, long bars as for 
> LB) and the more slender overall shape (not the "I just swallowed a 
> grapefruit" look of a LB) points me to SB.
> > 1758: Guesses have included Solitary or Yellowlegs. I was thinking Solitary
> > originally.
> Juvenile Spotted SP.  compare with 1675.  Note the back is barred with 
> buffy edges to the fresh juvenile feathers, NOT spotted as in Solitary.  
> Also note the classic eye ring of a juvenile Spotted... Solitary have 
> spectacles with white loral strip (like it's wearing glasses).  The 
> overall posture is classic Spotted SP.  Note how the brown on the neck and 
> upper breast a) does not connect in the middle and b) makes a "thumb" that 
> sticks down in front of the wing surrounded by white.  Finally, look at 
> the tail.  First, it extends beyond the wingtips as in Spotted and unlike 
> Solitary.  Second, it is brown.  Solitary have a very distinctive tail 
> pattern... dark center, white edges with lateral dark stripes.  From the 
> side on a standing bird, the white with black stripes is very evident.
> > 1781: Spotted
> Correct.  Adult in breeding plumage.
> > 1814: No guesses given
> Adult Least SP.  Note the worn, tattered feathers ageing this as an adult 
> bird... not the bright, fresh plumage of the juveniles above.  Legs are 
> yellow, scapulars and coverts have dark center and buffy edges.  Overall 
> brown appearance with heavy coloration on the upper breast.
> > 1853: Guesses included Least, Semipalmated and Western. So far, Western
> > seems to be the consensus.
> Juvenile Least SP.  Compare with above.  First, note the fresh plumage so 
> this is a juvenile something.  The yellow legs are not as obvious here so 
> focus on the scapulars, coverts, and tertials and compare with 1574.  
> Scapulars are dark centered with rusty orange edges and white tips.  You 
> can see a bit of the V on the back.  Coverts and tertials also have rusty 
> orange edging.  Also note the heavily streaked upper breast.  Western 
> should have more reddish color on the scapular edges without the white 
> tips and the coverts and tertials have cold, grey edges that contrast with 
> the scaps... not the uniform orangey look of a Least.
> > 1858: Spotted
> Correct.  Adult in breeding plumage.
> > 1969: Consensus is Pectoral
> Correct.  Adult in breeding plumage.  Note the heavy barred upper breast 
> that ends sharply.  Also note the worn feather edges on the scapulars and 
> coverts that help age the bird.  Can look similar to Least SP but much 
> larger.
> > 
> > For the non-shore birds:
> > 1984: Red-winged blackbirds. Maybe young? Maybe female? Maybe young
> > females? I had previous pictures of female rwbs that didn't seem to look
> > like this (but that was back in the spring, so different plumage, I guess?)
> > so I'd never have guessed that's what these were. Several though
> > meadowlark, which had been my initial thought until I realized the beak was
> > all wrong.
> Juvenile RW Blackbirds.  At least one looks like a male with red coming 
> in on sholder.
> > 
> > 1987: Juvenile Starling. This was actually my initial thought because of
> > the beak. But again, just last week, I was at Eagle Bend and saw a MUCH
> > larger bird that looked TOTALLY different from this one that also turned
> > out to be a juvenile starling, so that threw me. Interesting how quickly,
> > and completely, their plumage can change.
> > 
> Correct.  In heavy molt.  Note the "stars" coming in on the chest.
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