Date: 2/26/17 5:42 pm
From: Mark Miller <snowy.owlets...>
Subject: RE: [cobirds] Swan #4 at Cottonwood Marsh
Hi Everyone,



The fourth bird kept apart from the other three, but tried to push its way through the ice to get a bit closer. It had quite a bit of dirt and grime on its neck, so I’m sure we’re talking about the same bird. It had a noticeable bulge in the bill, but it wasn’t what the Brits would call a stonking Trumpeter bill. Its vocalizations were lower pitched than I normally hear from Tundras. Frankly, I didn’t see any marks on the lores. It’s an odd one, and it’s a good lesson for all of us about looking at all the field marks.



Mark Miller

Longmont, CO



From: <cobirds...> [mailto:<cobirds...>] On Behalf Of Christian Nunes
Sent: Sunday, February 26, 2017 6:34 PM
To: Marie Hoerner <mhoerner...>
Cc: Cobirds <cobirds...>
Subject: Re: [cobirds] Swan #4 at Cottonwood Marsh



Hi Maria,



I would make an argument that the bird in your photos is part of the pair of adult Tundra Swans that are invariably accompanied by the immature. Presumably they are a family group. The yellow spot on this one is rather small and can be hard to see, especially at a distance. Ted Floyd has some closer shots where the yellow can be seen well: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S33740263

Steve Mlodinow also has some nice flight shots that show all three of these birds. The yellow on that one adult is again hard to see, but it's present if you squint hard enough: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S34073530



Here are some more links to photos of the solitary swan who I think is more Trumpeter-esque, but things don't add up:



http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S33611634

http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S34030937

http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S34773743



Myself and many scores of birders have been calling this a Tundra Swan all winter, perhaps a bit too willingly. I remember studying it while it fed in the shallow bay at the east end of Hillcrest Reservoir back in January. Alarm bells were ringing, and I had hopes I could "turn" it into a Trumpeter, but the pale spot on the bill and the U-shaped forehead made me withdraw from that conclusion. I've started to look more closely at the available photos (and the bird too, but it was mostly sleeping this afternoon) after Mark Miller's email this morning. I still don't think it's a Trumpeter, but a hybrid could be an option. Or it's just a goofy Tundra Swan like we've been assuming all winter.



Thanks,



Christian Nunes

Longmont, CO



_____

From: <mesozoic.cephalopod...> <mailto:<mesozoic.cephalopod...> <mesozoic.cephalopod...> <mailto:<mesozoic.cephalopod...> > on behalf of Marie Hoerner <mhoerner...> <mailto:<mhoerner...> >
Sent: Sunday, February 26, 2017 7:14 PM
To: Christian Nunes
Cc: Cobirds
Subject: Re: [cobirds] Swan #4 at Cottonwood Marsh



That's interesting. That is not one of the birds that I was seeing last night; at least, I don't think that it is. Here are a couple of shots of that bird. (In the photos where the 4th swan joined 2 of the others briefly, it is the middle bird of the three in the photograph.) As far as I could see in the photos and through my binoculars, this one completely lacked the light color that is in the linked picture above. I am certainly not arguing with the ID of more experienced birders; I'm just wondering if one of the birds that I saw was a different bird because I'm curious and uncertain of my own ID skills when it comes to Trumpeters and Tundras.



Thanks for the thoughts on these swans,



Marie Hoerner

Aurora, CO



On Sun, Feb 26, 2017 at 5:09 PM, Marie Hoerner <mhoerner...> <mailto:<mhoerner...> > wrote:

That's interesting. That is not one of the birds that I was seeing last night; at least, I don't think that it is. Here are a couple of shots of that bird. (In the photos where the 4th swan joined 2 of the others briefly, it is the middle bird of the three in the photograph.) As far as I could see in the photos and through my binoculars, this one completely lacked the light color that is in the linked picture above. I am certainly not arguing with the ID of more experienced birders; I'm just wondering if one of the birds that I saw was a different bird because I'm curious and uncertain of my own ID skills when it comes to Trumpeters and Tundras.



Thanks for the thoughts on these swans,



Marie Hoerner

Aurora, CO





On Sun, Feb 26, 2017 at 4:49 PM, Christian Nunes <pajaroboy...> <mailto:<pajaroboy...> > wrote:

Birders,



The two obvious adult Tundra Swans, one with extensive yellow on the bill and the other with a small yellow tear drop, are the likely parents of the immature. This family group acts as a unit and they are rarely separated by very much space. One adult has extensive yellow on the bill, the other more of a small tear drop. The immature is dusky and has a pale spot on the bill that hasn't yet turned yellow. It has V-shaped forehead feathering, demonstrating the weakness of this field mark on immature birds.



The fourth bird is another adult, and is the head-scratcher. It spends more time by itself, often traveling over to the Valmont lakes. It is the individual recently photographed by Kyle Medina over at Sawhill Ponds (refer to his COBirds post from this morning "Swan- Sawhill Pond 2/24/17"). It is maybe slightly larger than the other swans, and the neck looks a little more sinuous and the back maybe more rounded. These features give it a resemblance to a Trumpeter. It currently has some heavy staining on the head and neck, which helps pick it out from a crowd, but is not something that's useful for ID. The thing is that it does have a pale spot on the bill in front of the eye- not bright yellow like the other Tundras, but more of an off white. The forehead feathering is also U-shaped, as in an adult Tundra. The legs are dark black, which might help rule out a "white morph" Trumpeter as described in David Sibley's blog post linked below. There's a good chance it's a Trumpeter x Tundra. Steve Mlodinow has extensive experience with both species and their crosses, so he might have more to chime in on that hypothesis.



A handy link to Kyle's photo: http://tinyurl.com/hpe7det

Some good reading: http://www.sibleyguides.com/2011/07/trumpeter-swans-with-yellow-loral-spots/


<http://www.sibleyguides.com/2011/07/trumpeter-swans-with-yellow-loral-spots/>

<http://www.sibleyguides.com/2011/07/trumpeter-swans-with-yellow-loral-spots/> Trumpeter Swans with yellow loral spots - Sibley Guides

www.sibleyguides.com <http://www.sibleyguides.com>

Related posts and pages: Trumpeter Swans, yellow bill spots, and leucism In a previous post I’ve talked about Trumpeter Swans with yellow bill spots as a...





Thanks,



Christian Nunes

Longmont, CO








_____


From: <mesozoic.cephalopod...> <mailto:<mesozoic.cephalopod...> <mesozoic.cephalopod...> <mailto:<mesozoic.cephalopod...> > on behalf of Marie Hoerner <mhoerner...> <mailto:<mhoerner...> >
Sent: Sunday, February 26, 2017 4:28 PM
To: <snowy.owlets...> <mailto:<snowy.owlets...> ; Cobirds
Subject: Re: [cobirds] Swan #4 at Cottonwood Marsh



I had not gotten the chance yet to post about this, but I saw four swans there last night. Three were Tundra Swans (2 adults and a 1st year), and the fourth I thought was a Trumpeter based on the complete lack of yellow in the lores and what seemed to be larger size (although they are hard to tell apart because of individual variability in the lores and I'm no expert when it comes to swans). It is nice to have confirmation since I was rather uncertain.



Marie Hoerner

Aurora, CO



On Sun, Feb 26, 2017 at 8:28 AM, snowy.owlets <snowy.owlets...> <mailto:<snowy.owlets...> > wrote:

Hi Everyone,



A fourth swan has just come in. It looks and sounds like a Trumpeter.



Mark Miller

Longmont, CO







Sent via the Samsung Galaxy S® 5 ACTIVE™, an AT&T 4G LTE smartphone

--
You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups "Colorado Birds" group.
To unsubscribe from this group and stop receiving emails from it, send an email to cobirds+<unsubscribe...> <mailto:cobirds+<unsubscribe...> .
To post to this group, send email to <cobirds...> <mailto:<cobirds...> .
To view this discussion on the web visit https://groups.google.com/d/msgid/cobirds/<64a0rvwa9idkmybacp3h4hy0.1488122931978...> <https://groups.google.com/d/msgid/cobirds/<64a0rvwa9idkmybacp3h4hy0.1488122931978...>?utm_medium=email&utm_source=footer> .
For more options, visit https://groups.google.com/d/optout.







--



<mhoerner...> <mailto:<mhoerner...>

Ph.D. Candidate

Department of Geophysical Sciences

The University of Chicago

5734 S. Ellis Ave.

Chicago, IL 60637

--
You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups "Colorado Birds" group.
To unsubscribe from this group and stop receiving emails from it, send an email to cobirds+<unsubscribe...> <mailto:cobirds+<unsubscribe...> .
To post to this group, send email to <cobirds...> <mailto:<cobirds...> .

To view this discussion on the web visit https://groups.google.com/d/msgid/cobirds/CAAPQkTv1grVKc78fA6Ssxz7Ms_SUW%<3D530U5D6q_iFKSDYqdsDQ...> <https://groups.google.com/d/msgid/cobirds/CAAPQkTv1grVKc78fA6Ssxz7Ms_SUW%<3D530U5D6q_iFKSDYqdsDQ...>?utm_medium=email&utm_source=footer> .
For more options, visit https://groups.google.com/d/optout.

--
You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups "Colorado Birds" group.
To unsubscribe from this group and stop receiving emails from it, send an email to cobirds+<unsubscribe...> <mailto:cobirds+<unsubscribe...> .
To post to this group, send email to <cobirds...> <mailto:<cobirds...> .
To view this discussion on the web visit https://groups.google.com/d/msgid/cobirds/<DM5PR15MB1419CDE07DD25FEB6A79895BBC540...> <https://groups.google.com/d/msgid/cobirds/<DM5PR15MB1419CDE07DD25FEB6A79895BBC540...>?utm_medium=email&utm_source=footer> .


For more options, visit https://groups.google.com/d/optout.







--



<mhoerner...> <mailto:<mhoerner...>

Ph.D. Candidate

Department of Geophysical Sciences

The University of Chicago

5734 S. Ellis Ave.

Chicago, IL 60637







--



<mhoerner...> <mailto:<mhoerner...>

Ph.D. Candidate

Department of Geophysical Sciences

The University of Chicago

5734 S. Ellis Ave.

Chicago, IL 60637

--
You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups "Colorado Birds" group.
To unsubscribe from this group and stop receiving emails from it, send an email to cobirds+<unsubscribe...> <mailto:cobirds+<unsubscribe...> .
To post to this group, send email to <cobirds...> <mailto:<cobirds...> .
To view this discussion on the web visit https://groups.google.com/d/msgid/cobirds/<DM5PR15MB14193E8900BCE8ABD11A3E09BC570...> <https://groups.google.com/d/msgid/cobirds/<DM5PR15MB14193E8900BCE8ABD11A3E09BC570...>?utm_medium=email&utm_source=footer> .
For more options, visit https://groups.google.com/d/optout.

--
You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups "Colorado Birds" group.
To unsubscribe from this group and stop receiving emails from it, send an email to cobirds+<unsubscribe...>
To post to this group, send email to <cobirds...>
To view this discussion on the web visit https://groups.google.com/d/msgid/cobirds/008001d2909b%24189479c0%2449bd6d40%<24...>
For more options, visit https://groups.google.com/d/optout.

 
Join us on Facebook!