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I am sorry for the delayed response Edge.  Thank you for the thoughtful and 
philosophical reply.  You have given me a good many characteristics to 
consider.  You may want to refer to my checklist in a couple of weeks to see 
my "final answer".
Maureen

-----Original Message----- 
From: Edge Wade
Sent: Tuesday, October 25, 2016 2:18 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: orange crowned vs common yellowthroat

Not wishing to make this too easy, my point is that we often assume a photo 
will give us a definitive answer...and sometimes it does.

But, if we follow a trend of depending on photos to clinch our 
identifications, we are little better than the 19th Century birders who had 
to have the bird in hand to be sure and to convince others.

Let us consider the things Ludlow Griscom and his successors (including 
Peterson) taught us.

There are definitive field marks on nearly every bird (and the lack, 
thereof, is itself a clue).
Look at the whole bird as a total creature, and look carefully at each 
component.  Is it a tiny, medium or large bill, compared with similar birds? 
Does it have a broken eye-ring?  Is there an eye-line before or behind the 
eye? Are there streaks or spots?  Is it a relatively short, medium or long 
tail?
Look at where the bird is seen (even in migration, there are habitat 
preferences).
Look at what the bird is doing (type of feeding behavior, for example).

Maureen has some very good photos on the eBird link.  Take a look at them 
and practice your i.d. skills by applying some careful analysis of the 
image--not so trying, given the birds in the photos are not flitting around.

Bodacious birding,

Edge Wade
Columbia, MO
[log in to unmask]

----- Original Message -----
From: "Them Murphys" <[log in to unmask]>
To: [log in to unmask]
Sent: Tuesday, October 25, 2016 1:08:06 PM
Subject: Re: orange crowned vs common yellowthroat

I forgot to mention that I saw the birds in question a month ago.
Maureen

From: Them Murphys
Sent: Tuesday, October 25, 2016 11:58 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: orange crowned vs common yellowthroat

Hello everyone,
I was wondering if someone could help me id a confusing fall warbler.  I 
have several photos of the bird and am leaning towards common yellowthroat, 
but the orange crowned in the guidebook looks similar to me at this time of 
year.  To the best of my knowledge, I have never seen an orange crowned. 
The birds were foraging in the underbrush and I do not recall any tail 
cocking.  See checklist attached for photos.

http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S31811492

Thanks for your time,
Maureen


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ABA Birding Code of Ethics
http://www.aba.org/about/ethics.html 

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