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      Whatbird Forums Rules   01/08/17

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    • Aveschapines

      Found a baby bird or a sick or injured bird?   07/11/17

      Here is a short article with advice for what to do if you find a baby bird or one that appears to be sick or injured. Bird rescue article Please feel free to post here if you have questions or need more help.
mike34

Nelson's vs Saltmarsh Sparrows

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All different individuals found in Virginia Beach this past week.

1.  26349839839_0053dd80b9_k.jpg_V9A2815 by mike, on Flickr

 

2.  26349840229_ee7c0a50c7_k.jpg_V9A2800 by mike, on Flickr

 

3.  26349840779_f0b1083866_k.jpg_V9A2813 by mike, on Flickr

 

4.  26349841289_b6d8019a59_k.jpg_V9A2744 by mike, on Flickr

 

5.  26349841479_8faad9367b_k.jpg_V9A2788 by mike, on Flickr

 

6.  26349841899_bd557391a7_k.jpg_V9A2738 by mike, on Flickr

 

7.   26349842419_f3aecbdab3_k.jpg_V9A2742 by mike, on Flickr

 

8.  26349842659_4f958d1c07_k.jpg_V9A2733 by mike, on Flickr

 

9.  26349843219_25ea73c293_z.jpg_V9A2723 by mike, on Flickr

 

Thanks for any possible help!

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a bump for the night crew :)

 

also, I don't need all to be identified...  specifically looking to see if both species are present to make an accurate ebird report.

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I would say they're all Nelson's with the streaking and the buffy orange chest, but wait for a 2nd opinion.

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Thanks...  the location where these were found have had several reputable birders reporting both species with the Saltmarsh Sparrows listed much more often and with higher counts.  Also, every picture I've posted here thus far has been identified as a Saltmarsh...  even though I thought a few were Nelson's.

 

Appreciate the feedback!

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After further review of your photos, I can say that none of them are pure Saltmarsh.  No pure Saltmarsh would have that much orange on the chest.  

These two species interbreed frequently, and there seems to be a "spectrum" between pure Saltmarsh and pure Nelson's.  I sent this thread to a friend who is more knowledgeable on this ID than I am, and his opinion was that there are again no true Saltmarsh, and that all of these are at the Nelson's end of the spectrum (and very well may be all Nelson's).  The second bird may represent a hybrid (or some other backcross with both species's genes) due to the darker, more defined streaking.

This ID complex is very challenging, with some birds not being identifiable to the species due to the extensive interbreeding and variation.

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I appreciate the followup and for the description--it was that second bird that I was thinking was a possible Saltmarsh.   Give me fall warblers any day over these two Sparrows!

 

Again, thank you.

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