Date: 2/8/18 7:53 pm
From: David Irons <llsdirons...>
Subject: [obol] Re: A perspective on perspective
The usefulness of the loral angle and photometrics in general as field marks are fairly easy to disprove, both through a series of same bird photos and Mike’s more scientific method. Remarkably, Cin-Ty Lee, the lead author of the BIRDING article is a highly accomplished scientist. He has a PhD in geochemistry from Cal Tech and is a Rice University faculty member. Thus, I am surprised that he and Andrew Birch did not see the inherent flaws in the methodologies that produced their conclusion.

Their article sent many birders scuffling down a path towards greater confusion regarding dowitcher ID. In addition to the loral angle issues, I never put much faith in the supposed back profile differences that these authors and others profess to be useful in identifying dowitchers either.

Finally, it is best to avoid trying to use apparent bill length to ID these birds. There is significant overlap in bill length between the shortest-billed Long-billeds and the longest-billed Short-billed Dowitchers.

Dave Irons
Beaverton, OR

Sent from my iPhone

> On Feb 8, 2018, at 4:10 PM, Mike Patterson <celata...> wrote:
>
> I use the scientific method to test the efficacy of photo-metric
> analysis of loral angle in identifying decoys. The outcome will shock
> you*
>
> http://www.surfbirds.com/community-blogs/northcoastdiaries/
>
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> *unless you took geometry in high school or went to art school...
>
>
>
> --
> Mike Patterson
> Astoria, OR
> That question...
> http://www.surfbirds.com/community-blogs/northcoastdiaries/?p=3294
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