Date: 8/5/17 5:19 pm From: David Irons <LLSDIRONS...> Subject: [obol] A Seasonally Useful Primer
Over the past couple days I have beating the heat by staying indoors and reviewing eBird photos associated with Oregon checklists. Many of the images are of common birds, but there are some cases when one common species is misidentified as another, thus the report doesn't get flagged for review by the traditional filters.
One of the most common mistakes that I encounter is Willow Flycatchers being identified as Western Wood-Pewees or vice versa. There have also been a few cases involving pewees being identified as other species Empidonax flycatchers. In my opinion, this is an under-appreciated ID challenge for many birders. Several years ago I wrote an article on this topic, so I thought I would share a link to it, as this problem is exacerbated in late summer when lots of hatch-year Western Wood-Pewees and Willow Flycatchers are on the landscape. Young pewees are generally paler below and more greenish above than adults and they can show quite a bit of yellow on mandible. Young Willows are duller brown that adults, giving them a look that is more pewee-like. There are some key structural issues that are really helpful for sorting out confusing birds. Hopefully, the link below will be helpful.