Thursday, June 25, 2009

Mystery Bird Quiz

While visiting Terry Gess' studio, along a quiet, wooded road in Mitchell County, North Carolina, my birding expertise was called into question. There was a dead bird on his door step, a victim of a window strike, and the potters wanted me to identify it. I'm sorry to say, I failed the initial test, but when I returned home, to my field guides and Internet access, I was able to redeem myself.

Let's see how you fare. Can you ID this bird? (For the sake of scale, I photographed it with my 58mm lens cap, in order to get some sense of its size.)

click any photo to enlarge

Post your answers in the comments section. Just for fun, tell me if you knew right away, worked it out on your own, or used reference materials to reach your conclusion.


donaldthebirder said...

Eastern Towhee juvenile. Worked it out my own by picking my head. Finch head stands out right away. The white in the bird's wings and tail puts towhee in mind, as I cant think of anything else that would have finch head with white like that in tail and wings (not a grosbeak obviously). Also the fact that it was in the woods makes me say EATO.

Anonymous said...

I have to go along with Donald;
the tail, the wing patch, the
beak, all point to Eastern
Towhee juvenile to me. By the
way, I'm getting close with a
couple of those moths--down to
family and genus. With my limited
resources I can't say for sure
if I'll get them down to species.
Hap in New Hope