Thursday, September 18, 2008

Mystery Bird Number Three, or Why It's Good to Have More Than One Field Guide or Better Yet- a Friend Who's Really, Really Good

Here's yet another warbler that I couldn't identify without help. I scoured my two favorite field guides- Peterson (fifth edition) and Stokes Field Guide to Warblers and couldn't find anything to fit this bird. That gray neck band wasn't anywhere. So, once again I asked Hap in New Hope for help.

Gracious as ever, Hap referred me to the big Sibley Guide to Birds and sure enough, there it was! Can you find it?
I'll put the id in the comments.
Posted by Picasa

23 comments:

Deb said...

I think I found it! I'll wait for others to take a shot at it though.

I really wish I had the time to sit down and have a look at all of the birds that seem to be active in the morning around my place!

Kathiesbirds said...

Lynne, I took your challenge and I believe it is a Magnolia Warbler. What a sighting! My warbler life-list is sorely lacking. How wonderful that your get to add this little guy! The use of field guides has been a popular subject lately. I currently have 3 sitting on the desk next to the computer. I use them all!

dguzman said...

Nice one!

Tootie said...

Your bird photos are great!

NCmountainwoman said...

Lovely photographs. Sorry...I'm one of those hapless folks for whom "warbler" is just fine.

Linda in Erie said...

My thought was a Magnolia Warbler in an immature stage?

KatDoc said...

Magnolia!

You are right, Lynne, I find more than one field guide is essential. For people who don't HAP-pen to have a well-versed birding buddy to help with warblers, I recommend Stokes' Field Guide to Warblers. (Carolyn: "HAP-less?" LOL!!)

While I usually prefer art to photographs for IDs, the photos in this guide are remarkably well-done. The Stokes' devote two pages to each species, one with words and maps, and one with pictures. There are different photos of adult male and female, juvenile, and fall plumages.

One of my favorite features is the line-drawing of the underside of each species. Face it, sometimes all you see of a warbler is its butt. In our maggie, Lynne has a great view of the white undertail coverts and the tail, which is white on the front half and black on the back half. That's all you need to ID this warbler. (Of course, the yellow flanks with black streaking helps!)

Great photos!

Lynne said...

Deb- Mornings are such a good time to see the good stuff.

Kathie- You're right! I have several guides but tend to leave the big Sibley on the shelf. I'll start to keep it more handy.

Delia- Thank you ma'am!

Tootie- Thank you and stop by again.

NCMontainwoman- Fall warblers are nearly imposible for me.

Linda- Yep, immature Magnolia.

Katdoc- You really know your warblers! I like the skinny Stokes warbler guide too.

Mary said...

I like Stokes' photos. Sibley's is my second source. Warblers are tiny, foreign birds for me. I've only seen a few...because I'm stuck in my back yard with PIGEONS. ;-)

egretsnest said...

My goodness your pics have been fantastic lately -- love the clarity of that bird against the overcast sky. Gorgeous.

Corey said...

I just learned that one this week Lynne . . nice shots!

Jayne said...

Wow Lynne, you are in a Warbler Wonderland as of late! Beautiful bird you captured there! :c)

RuthieJ said...

Hi Lynne,
Isn't it nice to have a bird expert as a friend? My friend John helped me confirm that what I saw last weekend was a Connecticut warbler and not a Mourning (like I originally thought).
I can't remember....have you ever birded with Hap in person?

Marsha said...

This sure is a pretty bird, I don't know if I've ever seen one.

Richard said...

It's a good thing that you and I have Hap for all his help. We have both been using him alot lately. Good pictures. Fall colors on birds are starting to drive me right up the wall. What was easy to ID in the spring has turned into a real challenge this fall.

scienceguy288 said...

According to my Peterson's it is a Magnolia Warbler, but if I saw black on the top of the tail, then it would be for certain.

Bird Girl said...

Ok...I'm ready to MOVE TO HASTY BROOK!!! You are having so many neat happenings that I can hardly stand it! You sure picked a wonderful place to live and bird!!! Beautiful warbler!!!

Leedra said...

All I can say is, I really like the color. We don't have Warblers in our area very much.

Eve said...

Hi Lynne!
You get the best birds! I'll be looking forward to some warblers coming through here any day now. I hope I can get as good pictures as you!!

Marsha said...

Lynne,
I just went into your archives to find when & where you went to see the migrating sandhill cranes last year. After I viewed your wonderful posts and then googled Crex Meadows, I was surprised that they used your quote from your bog on their home page on a wonderful photo. How neat!! We look forward to spending a weekend there soon!

BirdingMom said...

I'm going with Magnolia Warbler too, but then I only have the Peterson's and the Smithsonian to go by. I will be looking into that Sibley's Warbler guide, something I could use in the spring and fall around here.
Have you been to Birdpost.com?
I just started my lifelist there.
I'm sure they would love to have some of your pictures there ~ you are an amazing avian photographer?

nina said...

I'm always encouraged to hear someone else's trials in id-ing a bird, or anything for that matter.

I think, more important than knowing the answer to all things, is knowing how to find the answer. And a good puzzle is a great way to start.

Larry said...

I wasn't sure what an immature Magnolia looked like but that was my first insinct when I saw the streakig and the color of the breast-good to know my first instincts are right some of the time.-I'm getting envious of your warbler photos-I don't usually have that kind of luck with them.-You seem to have a knack for capturing them on film.