Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Mystery Bird Number Two

Here's another bird that I saw two weekends ago at Hasty. Again, the sky was very overcast and I believe it was drizzling at this point so the pictures are on the poor side. It has to be a vireo but what kind? It has:

prominent eye ring

thicker, slightly hooked bill

two wing bars (seen better in the second photo)

shortish tail

yellow wash on the flanks

So here I go- I think it looks most like a Blue-headed Vireo.
(page 349 of the big Sibley)
What do you all think?
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swamp4me said...

Sure looks like a blue-headed - at least that is what Treebeard said when I showed him your pictures. And he said it before I read your thoughts on the ID. He's the birder in the family and is usually right about things birdy.

KatDoc said...

Yup, Blue-headed (formerly "Solitary.") The heavy, slightly hooked bill makes it a vireo, and the bold eyerings ("spectacles") makes it a Blue-headed. Nice find!

Ammendment: In your area, that is. Other spectacled vireos include the plumbeous and cassin's in the west, both of which also have wingbars, and the black-capped in Texas & Mexico, which has a black cap, of all things.

Coming late to the warbler party from an earlier post, but I agree with Tennessee.


Mary said...

I think you're right, Linne. I check my Sibley's and you're on the mark.

Geeezzz, Kathi really knows her birds, doesn't she?

Bird Girl said...

You really are having a warbler party lately - one I wish I could attend! It's so much fun to see what you find each post!

KatDoc said...

Nah, Mary, I don't really know my birds, I have "Identify Yourself," by BT3 and editors of BWD, illustrations by the illustrious Ms Zick. This book contains the greatest answers to the age-old question, "I know it is a (fill in the blank) but which one?" Side-by-side comparison drawings and written descriptions pointing out critical details. Try it, you'll like it!

Should have added that White-eyed vireo and Yellow-throated vireo are other contenders for this ID, but Mystery Bird #2 is missing a white eye and a yellow throat. I supposed juv. White-eyed is a possibility, but I still come down in favor of Blue-headed.

Anonymous said...

Hi Lynne,nice Blue-headed Vireo.
I believe you are becoming quite
accomplished!! I saw this bird or
its twin in my backyard this morning. Keep 'em coming.
Hap in New Hope

Richard said...

Can't go against Hap...my guess was Blue-headed Vireo. I think (since I don't know) that this may be a young bird since it doesn't have the white throat.

Jayne said...

I've never seen one Lynne. Beautiful! Good job with the ID too. :c)

RuthieJ said...

Good for you Lynne!
When's the expected date of completion for that senior adult group home at Hasty Brook? I want to get my reservation in early. ;-)

Marsha said...

How fun that you are spotting all these neat mystery birds and id-ing them! I'm usually at a loss and post them asking for help and all of the wonderful people like you on birding blogs id them for me :-)

Q said...

Dear Lynne,
Wonderful birds! Never have seen them. Very few Warblers in my area.
I think I need a bird trip!

Kathiesbirds said...

I read all the comments. What an interesting conversation. I got an education myself today. I didn't know they had changed the name for the solitary vireo to blue-headed either.

Larry said...

Do you know that I haven't seen even one of those this year and they're not even that uncommon-go figure.

Lynette said...

Last weekend, outside the Panera Bread restaurant in VA Beach (near Pembroke Mall), I saw a group of birds waiting for crumbs from the outside patrons. These were large (the size of mockingbirds) birds with strong all-purpose dark bills; dark gray backs & wings; yellowish bellies tinted faintly with olive (but not white); and all had WHITE irises! Tail is held out straight, not cocked up. I was guessing white-eyed vireos, having never seen one; but all books & photos indicate the vireo is a smaller ("sparrow-sized") bird. These were definitely larger. Probably still there, boldly begging for crumbs. Can anyone help ID this bird? Lynette, Norfolk, VA