Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Fork-tailed Flycatcher showing yellow crown stripe

This is another picture of the Fork-tailed Flycatcher in Stamford CT from my second visit to the Cove Island Park site. I particularly like this picture because of the yellow crown stripe - I think many Tyrant flycatchers have this sort of thing, including Eastern Kingbird and Couch's Kingbird from my personal experience - but like an Orange-crowned Warbler or Ruby-crowned Kinglet it's usually hidden. The FTFL was being harassed by Mockingbirds on this morning, and a couple of times had flared the yellow crown patch out of irritation, and in this photo it still shows partially (it's larger than this in display) even though it's not being chased by Mockingbirds right at this moment.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Loggerhead Shrike immature

The bottom shot gives a sense of how windy it was at Jones Beach SP when I took these photos, although it wasn't that cold and compared to conditions Northern Shrike is found in in winter it's probably not especially challenging. The faint barring on the breast indicates a first winter bird, which after all are the individuals that tend to come south the furthest during winter.

Update: careful reconsideration of the ID by many birders has ended up with the consensus being strongly tilted towards an atypical Loggerhead Shrike, as opposed to an atypical Northern Shrike.

Fork-tailed Flycatcher

Some of the first images shot in anger with the new 800mm lens, which worked out well. Of course, any day when you can take pictures of a vagrant Fork-tailed Flycatcher with any hardware at all is a good one. I haven't figured out age/race yet although from the bluntness of the primaries I'm leaning toward adult, perhaps female. This bird was a multi-day special in Stamford CT.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Ring-billed Gull

Ring-billed Gull, at a feeding frenzy at a sluice at Brigantine division of Forsythe NWR. This is a first winter immature as indicated by the scapular contrast, the brown markings in the mantle feathers and the solidly dark distal half of the bill. I think it's just yawning.

This was during my first field test of my new 800mm f5.6L-IS lens.