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#1 RocknRobin

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Posted 02 February 2013 - 03:51 AM

This may be the strangest request for an ID ever! LOL
It's also my first post, so instead of reading directions, I am just going to try to attach the pic, and hope it works.

Two of my sons were out for a walk today and they saw a bird that they have never seen before. Both of them are experienced outdoorsmen and are pretty knowledgeable. They made mental notes of it's markings, size, etc. They described the bird to me and I had no idea. They looked in the Audobon Guide and found nothing that resembeled it...did some searching on the internet...nothing similar.

This is in central Wisconsin. Very cold today, sunny, but temps right around zero degrees. The bird was spotted along a frozen river and was feeding on a hemlock tree. They said it was hanging upside down.
They were frustrated that I was suggesting certain birds that didn't match the description, so they drew a sketch...a very detailed one. LOL
They said it was smaller than a grosbeak, but larger than a chickadee. That should really narrow it down for everyone. :D The also said the head was real roundish looking. The tail was forked, but a shorter tail.

So look at their sketch and see if anyone has any suggestions of what this might be. I did ask them to color it to make it more realistic, but they reminded me that I threw all their crayons away when they graduated from high school.

If I find out this is one of their practical jokes on me...... :unsure: I think it's for real though.

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#2 Lenapelee

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Posted 02 February 2013 - 04:01 AM

yellow-rumpded warbler a way out there guess

#3 Kat

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Posted 02 February 2013 - 04:04 AM

I Will try to throw someting out there this is a tuff one. Magnolia Warbler in migration. Just a guess. Go to the search browser on add what the boys saw. and look at each bird to see if you come up with any thing. Welcome to what bird. :)

#4 GreatHorn

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Posted 02 February 2013 - 04:07 AM

Try female White-winged Crossbill

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#5 Lenapelee

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Posted 02 February 2013 - 04:14 AM

by Jove, I think GH's got it.

#6 RocknRobin

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Posted 02 February 2013 - 04:15 AM

No on the Warblers. The whole head is primarily yellow.
Only one of my sons are here now and he said the White-winged Crossbill looks similar, but is not it. (I bet it is though)
I'll ask my other son tomorrow. Keep the suggestions coming!

#7 GreatHorn

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Posted 02 February 2013 - 04:15 AM

What leads me in that direction is the context - a bird hanging upside down on a hemlock tree in winter in Wisconsin! And the features in the sketch match.

If it's not a WW Crosbill, how about other winter finches? Not a Pine or Evening Grosbeak? Pine Siskin?

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#8 RocknRobin

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Posted 02 February 2013 - 04:16 AM

I saw my first Red Crossbill a few days ago. A female, and I had a feeling it was a Crossbill that they saw, but they insisted it wasn't.

#9 GreatHorn

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Posted 02 February 2013 - 04:21 AM

Not to insult anyone's intelligence, but winter plumage goldfinch? It has to be something, unless your sons discovered a new species ;)

http://ibc.lynxeds.c...ristis-6181.jpg

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#10 darknight

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Posted 02 February 2013 - 04:28 AM

I suspect that it was a White-winged Crossbill, specifically a subadult male. Try showing them this picture, and see if they agree:

http://www.mvgazette...nged-crossbills

Sub-adult males are variable, ranging from looking much like females to looking orangey to looking pinkish-red with just a trace of juvenile streaking, so if it's not exactly like what they saw, it could still be a White-winged Crossbill. The only thing that doesn't match is the white spots in the tail.

There are 976 species on the ABA list. Looks like I've got a lot of birding to do....

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Latest ABA lifers: Olive-backed Pipit, Rufous-backed Robin Least Storm-Petrel, Ashy Storm-Petrel, Black Storm-Petrel, Craveri's Murrelet, White-eared Hummingbird, Ruff, Black-vented Shearwater, Rosy-faced Lovebird, Sinaloa Wren, Rufous-capped Warbler, Greater Sage-Grouse, Harris Sparrow, Tufted Duck, Red-throated Pipit
California: 352

Riverside County, CA: 267
2014 ABA: 432

2014 World: 691


#11 RocknRobin

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Posted 02 February 2013 - 04:29 AM

My oldest son is a guide out in Montana part of the year and he sees Pine Grosbeaks all the time out there, so he is very familiar with those. They said it is smaller than a grosbeak too.
We have all kinds of Goldfinches on our feeders, so they know that one too. LOL
They think it's a hybrid something or other, but I am leaning toward it being the White-winged Crossbill.

#12 RocknRobin

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Posted 02 February 2013 - 04:32 AM

No on the Pine Siskin also. We've had a lot of them on our feeders this year, so they know that one too.

#13 GreatHorn

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Posted 02 February 2013 - 04:38 AM

They think it's a hybrid something or other, but I am leaning toward it being the White-winged Crossbill.

At this point I would agree with you...

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#14 RocknRobin

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Posted 02 February 2013 - 04:38 AM

I showed him images of the subadult male and since you stated that they are really variable, he thinks this could be it. :D

#15 cestma

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Posted 02 February 2013 - 04:52 AM

Sometimes if you do a google image search on a possible ID you'll get a big enough variety of different shots that there will be a few that resemble the bird you want to ID. You have to be on the look-out for mis-identifications, though...
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#16 Guest_Birdluvr_*

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Posted 02 February 2013 - 05:33 PM

sounds like a white winged crossbill to me too

#17 jdeitsch

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Posted 02 February 2013 - 06:58 PM

Sometimes if you do a google image search on a possible ID you'll get a big enough variety of different shots that there will be a few that resemble the bird you want to ID. You have to be on the look-out for mis-identifications, though...

Yeah, one time I typed in Yellow Warbler, and I probably saw at least 20 different kinds of "yellow" warblers :lol:

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#18 RocknRobin

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Posted 02 February 2013 - 07:10 PM

Ok, so my other son looked at the WW Crossbill. He thinks that looks the most like it out of anything he's seen so far. So I think we most likely have a WW Crossbill! Hopefully I will see it. I usually have my camera with me.
Thanks for all the help. I will post again if we have any more sightings or pics.....or sketches! :D

#19 Guest_Birdluvr_*

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Posted 02 February 2013 - 10:08 PM

Yeah, one time I typed in Yellow Warbler, and I probably saw at least 20 different kinds of "yellow" warblers :lol:

LOL

#20 jdeitsch

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Posted 02 February 2013 - 10:11 PM

LOL

Some of the more common ones are, Yellow-rumped, Cape May, Hooded, Wilson's, and one Virginia's....

Townsend's
Prothonotary
Palm
Orange-crowned

^^ also a few of these

and a robin? what the heck? :huh:

And so NEVER trust google searches entirely! ;)

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