Date: 12/4/18 2:09 pm
From: Matt Cahill <matt.c.cahill...>
Subject: [obol] Most Undercover Rarity?
Hi all,

A potentially fun follow-up on rarities might be: thoughts on the most
likely rarity that is already here and we all keep missing it?

I had an enjoyable though frantic trip through northwest Oregon this
weekend to take advantage of all the goodies and the good weather (and skip
some early Bend winter slop). While watching the bluebirds I had to
research field marks, and I've seen thousands and thousands of bluebirds!
I'll admit I can't recall once thinking through what makes an eastern an
eastern while in Oregon. Since females and juveniles might easily pass for
mountains or westerns, I wonder how many eastern bluebirds have flitted
through the state right under our collective nose.

So what else is out there undercover? I did not double-check that the rock
sandpiper I watched in Seaside wasn't a purple sandpiper. Or that house
sparrow flocks didn't contain a Eurasian tree sparrow. What about a female
cowbird with a dull reddish eye? A flicker just a little too gilded?

I don't have a good enough grasp on what has been seen in Oregon over the
years, or what the likely next finds are. But given the whole spread of
ages and plumages to consider, I'm wondering what species isn't on the
state list but is hopping around some park or beach right now, and maybe
has been for years.

Matt Cahill


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