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Old Mar 30, 2006, 6:58 PM   #11
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eric s wrote:
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I hadn't heard that the tail round-ness vs. squared-off-ness could be used for gender identification. I thought it was only good for Cooper vs. Sharpie. Where did you hear that?

That is mentioned on pg 152 of Peterson's Eastern Field Guide. I know Peterson's is considered old-fashioned in many circles but I still like that guide along with the Sibley field guide...

That 2nd shot would be a good mystery photo!

Actually, Eric, I have posted a shot that you might like to see, a Chestnut-backed Chickadee...


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Old Mar 30, 2006, 11:06 PM   #12
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I have that book... but for some reason it isn't down where I am right now. I just checked "A Photographic Guide to North American Raptors" and it doesn't mention that, nore does the Kaufman I've got. My sibley is up by the other computer, so I'll go check that.

Very interesting indeed. Always something new to learn when ID'ing birds.

Eric

ps. I just went to see a talk by David Sibley on Tuesday. He was talking about how we (unconciously) misidentify birds due to psychological factors... expectations, how tricks in perception can confuse us. It was very interesting.
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Old Mar 30, 2006, 11:21 PM   #13
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eric s wrote:
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ps. I just went to see a talk by David Sibley on Tuesday. He was talking about how we (unconciously) misidentify birds due to psychological factors... expectations, how tricks in perception can confuse us. It was very interesting.
Darn - I would have loved to see that talk by Sibley! You're very fortunate. In general I agree with him. I see that often, especially among the lesser experienced in bird identification. But of course, I am experienced... :lol:, right? I do really try and be very cautious in my id efforts and depend on many physical clues in doing that (vocalizations, color, shape, behavior, habitat, etc).

It is also one of the reasons that id of birds for pictures posted on forums such as this can get tricky - we don't have all of the same input that the photographer had on site. That is why I will often answer an id query with a bunch of questions: what was the habitat like? where geographically was this taken? etc, etc. Even so, the answers that come back may not be accurate because the person may not remember what was important to take note of at the time they took the photo. Many birds are distinctive but so many pose real challenges depending on time of year (shorebirds are a great example of this, warblers too).
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Old Mar 31, 2006, 12:08 AM   #14
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Eric, I am not an expert in birds but i can say that is a great capture. Regards. Jaki
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