Date: 2/21/17 11:05 am From: Lars Per Norgren <larspernorgren...> Subject: [obol] Re: thrush conundrum
The seasonal nature of our spot-breasted thrushes makes it
easy to tell them apart in the lowland towns i'm familiar with
in Oregon. Swainson's arrive in mid-May and are all gone by
the end of September. Hermit Thrushes are common summer
birds at higher elevations in Oregon, but pretty much out of
towns by the time Swainson's return, and not back yet as the
Swainson's leave. There are several subspecies of Hermits
possible here in the lowlands in winter, which can look more
different from each other than they do from Swainson's sometimes.
Many Hermits look decidedly cool, while there is one with
surprisingly warm buffy area on the breast. I got good looks at
such birds on both the Brownsville and Yaquina Christmas counts a few
years ago. I can easily imagine folks thinking "Swainson's" on
such birds. I don't see them every winter. Lars
On Feb 21, 2017, at 10:27 AM, Jeff Gilligan wrote:
> Yes - a Hermit Thrush. Some forms have tails that aren't very red. The species also varies greatly in size. Without pushing the dog off my lap to do any research….I think our normal wintering subspecies is the "Dwarf" Hermit Thrush". Swainson's Thrushes should not arrive in western Oregon until the last days of April, and the great majority won't arrive until sometime in May.
> Jeff Gilligan
> On Feb 21, 2017, at 10:23 AM, Antonya Pickard <eco.outdoordiva...> wrote:
>> Hello birders! I'm hoping you can help me with a thrush id...
>> Since the worst of the snow storms we have had a thrush occasionally visiting our yard in NE Portland above the Rose City golf course. When I first saw it, I said oh a Swainson's thrush -then immediately second guessed myself. I dove deeply into Sibley's guide and haven't been able to be comfortable with a label yet. Now, I've seen Hermits in the Gorge, but not in awhile and I've seen Swainson's here and there and all over during migration and summer (even in-hand). I've also seen most of the other common thrushes across the country over the years. This bird is PALE with PALE spotted/speckled breast. It also seems SMALL to me -about the size of a song sparrow, but obviously different posture. It has the reddish tail and the eye-ring, but it is not very distinct as the bird is so pale. Today I saw it bob its tail. For most reasons, my inclination is to go with "Hermit", but the breast is clearly too pale from all the illustrations I've looked at...
>> Looking forward to feedback from the community -thX!
>> Antonya Pickard
>> 503-739-5460 mobile
>> MBA, Sustainable Business
>> Bainbridge Graduate Institute