Date: 8/25/20 3:57 pm
From: Harry Fuller <atowhee...>
Subject: [obol] Re: grosfinch
Peregrine and Great Horned Owl treat crow as a delicacy, genetics will out,
even in the grosfinch...do not feel bad, Audubon illustrated species that
do not exist, and may never have existed...there is a sandpiper in the
Smithsonian collection that has never been seen anywhere else...nature has
her little secrets

On Tue, Aug 25, 2020 at 3:21 PM Alan Contreras <acontrer56...> wrote:

> From personal experience I know that changing the recipe does not change
> the taste.
>
> Alan Contreras
> Eugene, Oregon
>
> <acontrer56...>
>
> www.alanlcontreras.com
>
>
> On Aug 25, 2020, at 3:18 PM, Tom Crabtree <tc...> wrote:
>
> 
>
> Darrel,
>
>
>
> We’ve all been there before. While leading a field trip I once identified
> a plastic milk jug as a Snowy Owl. At least your bird was breathing. I
> hope the corvid you are consuming isn’t “Northwestern Crow.”
>
>
>
> Tom
>
>
>
> *From:* <obol-bounce...> [mailto:<obol-bounce...>] *On
> Behalf Of *Darrel Faxon
> *Sent:* Tuesday, August 25, 2020 1:56 PM
> *To:* obol <obol...>
> *Subject:* [obol] grosfinch
>
>
>
> OK.
>
> I saw the bird.
>
> I have seen Bill's photos.
>
> I have studied Chuck's photos.
>
> I have read the comments.
>
> Consequently, some thoughts are in order.
>
> (1) Given the fact the consensus from a number of very good birders
> is that the bird was not a Pine Grosbeak, I concede I may have been wrong.
> It is not the first time it has happened, and it likely will not be the
> last.
>
> (2) None of the photos by either Bill or Chuck look to either Laura
> or me like the bird looked in life. Whether that is an artifact of
> lighting, camera function or faulty imagination on my part is for others to
> decide.
>
> (3) The fact that the bird was in ratty plumage did not help in the
> identification process.
>
> (4) As others have pointed out, there seem to be discrepancies
> between the plumage of the bird as photographed and that of any of the
> disputed species as shown in the field guides.
>
> (5) Under the circumstances, it might prove helpful, to some extent,
> to shed some species by process of elimination. Excluding Common Rosefinch,
> which does not need to be considered, there are six members of
> Fringillidae, that could be considered. Pine Grosbeak, Purple Finch,
> Cassin's Finch, House Finch, Red Crossbill and White-winged Crossbill. Toss
> the crossbills. Taking a cue from consensus, toss Pine Grosbeak. We are
> down to the three carpodacus finches.
>
> The bird in question had a deeply forked tail. Even though Sibley does not
> show this mark for Pine Grosbeak, nearly all online photos of the species
> reveal it to be a prominent feature of that species' plumage. House Finch
> has a squared off tail, which is even useful in separating it from Purple
> Finch, which has a deeper fork. Toss House Finch. When I first saw the bird
> in question at my feeder, I assumed it was a Black-headed Grosbeak, because
> they had been regular at that same feeder right up to the day of the
> sighting, and this new bird was every bit as large as a Black-headed
> Grosbeak. In the study I did of it over the next two and a half hours, much
> of the time during which it was sitting in plain sight on an exposed branch
> of a cherry tree about thirty feet from me, I had the same impression of
> its size. Additionally, at one point it was in the feeder with a Pine
> Siskin, and the size difference was obvious. One of the photos taken by
> Bill Tice shows this fact. I have many Purple Finches at my feeder every
> day all summer long, and never once have I seen one I mistook by size for a
> Black-headed Grosbeak.. Based on size, toss Purple Finch. That goes for
> Cassin's Finch as well.
>
> So what that that leave? I still think there were features of the
> bird as I saw it, that answer to PIne Grosbeak, but the photos do not back
> up that assessment. For one thing, the bill is simply flat out wrong for
> that species, and given that discrepancy, I see no point in discussing
> other features of the admittedly ratty plumage.. Grosfinch. pure and
> simple. I would like to think this sighting proved to be a learning
> experience for myself and others, but what any of us might have learned
> seems to me be as much in question as the identity of the bird.
>
> Thank you to all of you, who responded to my posts in regard to it,
> both on OBOL and in private. Crow doesn't taste so bad if one puts enough
> whipped cream on it.
>
>
>
> Darrel
>
>

--
Harry Fuller
author of: *San Francisco's Natural History: Sand Dunes to Streetcars:*
https://ecowise.wordpress.com/2017/04/20/sfnh/
author of *Great Gray Owls of CA-OR-WA*:
https://ecowise.wordpress.com/2015/05/08/the-great-gray-owl-book/
author of *Freeway Birding*: *freewaybirding.com
<http://freewaybirding.com>*
birding website: http://www.towhee.net
my birding blog: atowhee.wordpress.com

 
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