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MoBirders,
 
I need a little input on the subject of Winter Wrens (WIWR). Since the beginning of the new year (2013) Ellen and I have had two very different WIWR's in Jackson County and I would like to know a few things.
 
The first wren was on 1-1-2013. Ellen and I went out on the usual "New Year's Day Birding Outing" to Lake Jacomo, at Flemming Park. This is in Lee's Summit, MO. We were able to get a WIWR to come out of a stream bed within approximately 20-30 feet. Nice views of the bird and duly noted that our bird was almost a chocolate brown with a rufous over tone to it. I remember saying that I had never seen one so rich in color like this from earlier views of the WIWR. The second WIWR was this past weekend at Burr Oaks Wood CA in Blue Springs, MO. Here again we were by the Burr Oak Creek on the west side of the CA and with a little coaxing, a WIWR made itself known and came within 15-20 feet of where we were standing. This time our bird was a very pale/light brown with a gray wash to the feathers. Almost a sandy color to it. Definitely not the same as the first WIWR.
 
My concern is; is it possible for the Western (T. pacficus) species to have wondered this far east to have stopped here in Missouri? By all indications from my field guides and reference books, there is a difference in coloration between the Eastern species and the Western race excluding the one in the upper regions of Alaska. Or are there varying degrees among the Eastern species as to be very close to the Western, but "no way" could that bird be here this far east.
 
Look forward to any responses to get a better understanding of these little guys. Thanks!
 
Jim Zellmer
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Blue Springs, MO
Jackson County
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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