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Female Red-Winged Blackbird?


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#1 freezimmerman

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Posted 26 January 2012 - 05:44 PM

Hey there,

This bird was at our feeder earlier this week in Ashburn, VA. Picture was taken January 22. I saw some pictures of female red-winged blackbirds and the markings look similar but the coloring in the pictures I've seen is lighter than this.

 Thanks!

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#2 creeker

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Posted 26 January 2012 - 05:48 PM

That's a Female Red-winged Blackbird. They are a little variable, but all have that bold eyeline and long bill.

#3 freezimmerman

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Posted 26 January 2012 - 05:54 PM

Great! Thanks! Appreciate it.

#4 Tallin

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Posted 26 January 2012 - 07:27 PM

This must be the strangest female RW Blackbird I've ever seen....

#5 jetmedix

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Posted 26 January 2012 - 07:39 PM

Just a guess, but could be a sub adult male transitioning into adult plumage.


#6 cabirds

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Posted 27 January 2012 - 01:23 AM

Tallin:
This must be the strangest female RW Blackbird I've ever seen....

 

What do you find strange about it?

Here's a photo very similar to one I had accepted for publication on a local checklist/bird guide as an ID photo:

And here's one in the background of a bicolor Red-winged Blackbird:

 

I find the similarities striking given that the photos were taken on the opposite coast from the OP.



#7 roundywaves

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Posted 27 January 2012 - 06:57 AM

Maybe it is because the first bird seems so dark.  It could be the lighting.  Most the female rw bb I have seen seemed lighter, less black more brown.  But I generally see many more male rwbb than female. 

Nice pics by the way! 



#8 Liam

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Posted 27 January 2012 - 10:21 AM

jetmedix:
Just a guess, but could be a sub adult male transitioning into adult plumage.

That's exactly what it is. It's too dark for female and note the yellow epaulette coming in.



#9 cabirds

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Posted 27 January 2012 - 03:35 PM

Really?  Our local Audubon chapter has some miss-id'd photos.  They have a really dark one just like that.  (Actually, it looks like they replaced it with my photo...)

There was probably some other indicator I was missing.  Easy for a noob like me. :)



#10 Tallin

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Posted 27 January 2012 - 07:15 PM

Liam:

jetmedix:
Just a guess, but could be a sub adult male transitioning into adult plumage.

That's exactly what it is. It's too dark for female and note the yellow epaulette coming in.

 

Yes, this is what I was assuming.






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