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Everything posted by psweet

  1. confirm Black Phoebe

    Yes, that's a Black Phoebe.
  2. Chimney Swift?

    I suppose Vaux's is hypothetically possible -- there have been some found wintering in a few spots in Florida in recent years. But the chances of catching one of them migrating north would be miniscule.
  3. long-billed Curlew or Whimbrel

    Once you get away from a coastline, those sort of habitat preferences do change. Here where I live, Whimbrels are often seen in the grasslands behind the beaches. (Well, they're not often seen at all, but when they are, they're often seen away from the beach.)
  4. Monster Sharpie/Coop/???

    There are Red Goshawks -- they live in northern Australia. As far as this site and the art-science of hawkwatching, some of us have been indulging ourselves in that obsession for quite a few years.
  5. What birds are making these sounds?

    I think the first song is a Towhee, albeit a rather odd pattern. The intro's not right for a Song Sparrow, and I don't think it fits Vesper either. The background trill there sounds rather like a Pine Warbler to me.
  6. Western v. Eastern Willets

    It's interesting - during the winter, the only Willets you usually see on the East Coast are Western! The Eastern ones winter in S. America, and breed on the East Coast, when the Western ones are breeding in the middle of the continent.
  7. Monster Sharpie/Coop/???

    Not disagreeing, but I will point out it won't matter to the poster. As far as observers notes versus photos, that's complicated. A single photo can be surprisingly misleading, whereas an observer's memory of a particular behavior can sometimes cinch an ID. (This is especially true of voices -- there are a fair number of species that can't be ID'd by photos alone but are readily separated by voice.) When you're writing up an unusual bird, you want to put in as much info as you can, in addition to any photos.
  8. Warbler?

    What appear to be rictal bristles here are just the throat feathers standing out a bit. Our flycatchers have bills that are narrow top to bottom but wider left to right - from the side they won't look particularly thick I'll second Pine Warbler.
  9. Well, if the parents have accepted the change to the nest then there's no reason to move them. They look short enough that the youngsters won't have any problem getting past them when it's time to fledge. (Sometimes the parents won't accept changes, especially during incubation, which is why I would have advised you not to do it in the first place, if you hadn't already).
  10. Bird of Prey, Big.

    Yes, looks like another young Bald, but it's doubtful that they're related. Young raptors migrate south on a different schedule than the adults, for the most part, and there's no evidence I'm aware of that family groups stay together even their first winter.
  11. Brewer's Blackbird?

    Male Brewer's do have pale eyes, and a few females do. The eye on this bird isn't particularly pale, either. I can't find any details about timing, but I suspect that a young male's eyes might be changing about now.
  12. That's not a swallow nest. These look like Phoebes. Putting up the walls shouldn't make any difference. Birds don't normally just fall out of a nest -- if that were a regular thing, those birds would go extinct. If they did fall out, then it's because the nest was somehow disturbed.
  13. I'm definitely not a herpetologist, but looking through my old Peterson, looks like a Banded Watersnake, N. fasciata.
  14. Brewer's Blackbird?

    Yes, looks like a Brewer's.
  15. Possibly Acleris busckana, although I'm definitely not sure. Good call on the dart, by the way! One thing -- your field guide (most likely Peterson?) isn't going to include everything you find. There are simply too many moths for a book to cover them all. Especially when you get into these smaller things. It's a good place to start, but then I go to Moth Photographer's Group (http://mothphotographersgroup.msstate.edu/Plates.shtml ) and look over the plates. They have live images of quite a few and pinned moths for most of the species in N. America. They also link to Bugguide for those species that have a page there.
  16. Dragonfly from South FL

    Scarlet Skimmer, Cocothemis servilia. Our only introduced dragonfly, apparently.
  17. Spiders ID

    The first and third shots are Nephila clavipes, Golden Silk Orbweaver. The middle one is a Yellow Garden Spider, Argiope aurantia.
  18. This isn't a cottonmouth. It's one of the watersnakes, Nerodia sp.
  19. More Warbler help

    We use BTNW because BTGW could be Black-throated Gray (aka BTYW).

    We all started there -- no worries!
  21. South TX: Leucistic hummingbird

    Looking at the shape of the wingtips, I'd guess Black-chinned.
  22. Yosemite Unknown Bird(s)

    The first one sounds like a House Finch to me, the second one like a Steller's Jay. Varied Thrushes approach the tone, but they're longer and a bit haunting.

    An Olive Sparrow in the snow would be a once-in-a-lifetime event! The farthest north you find them is the Rio Grande valley in South Texas.
  24. Syncopated bird call

    Possibly White-throated Sparrow. The pattern fits, anyways.
  25. Dove, pigeon, or a cross?!?!

    This is a West Peruvian Dove. Dove and pigeon don't refer to specific species -- there's approximately 300 species in the family. In general, we call smaller ones doves and larger ones pigeons, but those are just general terms, not taxonomic ones.