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      Whatbird Forums Rules   01/08/17

      'Help Me Identify a Bird' rules: When posting a new thread, please: 1. Read the FAQ and forum rules before posting 2. Include the location in your Post when seeking ID 3. Include the date of the sighting 4. Provide a photo or detailed description of the bird Forum rules: By posting in the WhatBird forums you agree to the following board rules: 1. You will be tolerant and respectful of your fellow members 2. You will not spam 3. You will not post sexually explicit, vulgar or racist material 4. You will not advertise or sell products 5. You will not discuss illegal activities 6. You will keep topics of religion and politics to a bare minimum 7. You will not take advantage of chat to break any of the above rules. 8. Members will not discuss homosexuality nor make any comments about others' sexuality. Breaking any of these rules may result in a suspension or a permanent ban from the forums!! Furthermore, anyone who causes continuous dissent and disarray in the forums will be banned as seen fit by the forum moderators under the pretense of "trolling." Gallery photos: Regarding photos in the Whatbird gallery, please keep in mind that the copyright belongs to the person who took the photo. So please do not use any of the Gallery photos without requesting permission from the photographer. Forum Photos: If you use photos other than your own, please place a link to the referenced photo and do not post other photographer's work directly.
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      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.
RyanWin

Cooper's or Sharp-Shinned

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Hello, my friend wanted me to look over his photos of a hawk which killed a rock dove. Here is his observation: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/9505128 (Graphic content)

I was for sure this was either a Cooper's or Sharpie, or any other Accipiter hawk. The photo is not very good, but I could still make it out. I wanted to know what your guys' thoughts were.

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I agree that it's either a Coop or a Sharpie.  The shape makes me lean Cooper's, but the photos aren't good enough to ID to species, I'm afraid.

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3 minutes ago, The Bird Nuts said:

I agree that it's either a Coop or a Sharpie.  The shape makes me lean Cooper's, but the photos aren't good enough to ID to species, I'm afraid.

Yeah, that's exactly what I thought you would say.

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4 minutes ago, AV_1099 said:

Do you have a higher resolution (bigger size) picture of the hawk in question?  

Not really, I tried zooming in but it was all blurry.

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I sure cannot say for certain but I am quite sure that is a Coop. Head seems way to big for a Sharpie plus a Rock Dove is normally too large for Sharpie prey. That said, Sharpies don't always do what they normally do. 

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Not going to get anything definitive out of that, for sure. Even evaluating overall shape from that resolution isn't really all that possible. 

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18 hours ago, douginBC said:

I sure cannot say for certain but I am quite sure that is a Coop. Head seems way to big for a Sharpie plus a Rock Dove is normally too large for Sharpie prey. That said, Sharpies don't always do what they normally do. 

I agree with the fact that the prey is a dove generally would mean a COHA but I have even seen RTHA dove hunting so that not definitive in itself.

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5 hours ago, dvg said:

I agree with the fact that the prey is a dove generally would mean a COHA but I have even seen RTHA dove hunting so that not definitive in itself.

What does RTHA mean? Red Tailed Hawk?  if so, I would have to say Cooper's hawk because for sure the bird in the picture is an Accipiter.

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29 minutes ago, RyanWin said:

What does RTHA mean? Red Tailed Hawk?  if so, I would have to say Cooper's hawk because for sure the bird in the picture is an Accipiter.

Standard 4-char alpha bird code.  The codes can be very helpful when taking field notes or entering data in eBird.  The learning curve is relatively short and once a birder gets the hang of how they work, the codes can save a LOT of time, plus others will know what you're talking about.

  • RTHA Red-tailed Hawk
  • RLHA Rough-legged Hawk
  • RSHA Red-shouldered Hawk
  • COHA Cooper's Hawk
  • SSHA Sharp-shinned Hawk
  • MERL Merlin
  • AMKE American Kestrel
  • EUST European Starling

 

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2 minutes ago, eyesopen said:

Standard 4-char alpha bird code.  They can be very helpful when taking field notes or entering data in eBird.  The learning curve is relatively short and once a birder gets the hang of how they work, the codes can save a LOT of time, plus others will know what you're talking about.

  • RTHA Red-tailed Hawk
  • RLHA Rough-legged Hawk
  • RSHA Red-shouldered Hawk
  • COHA Cooper's Hawk
  • SSHA Sharp-shinned Hawk
  • MERL Merlin
  • AMKE American Kestrel
  • EUST European Starling

 

Adding to this, beware that we can also be lazy sometimes (and abbreviate abbreviations....sounds crazy but many of us can be guilty of this)....like SSH instead of SSHA or CH instead of COHA....or something like 'RT Hawk' instead of red-tailed hawk. It's usually something you can figure out, but on a forum like this you can certainly always ask for clarity. 

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"I agree with the fact that the prey is a dove generally would mean a COHA but I have even seen RTHA dove hunting so that not definitive in itself."

I think the question here was whether or not it was a Coop or a Sharpie, in which case the prey size would suggest Coop. It is clearly not a RT Hawk or any kind of buteo. 

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31 minutes ago, birder123456 said:

Adding to this, beware that we can also be lazy sometimes (and abbreviate abbreviations....sounds crazy but many of us can be guilty of this)....like SSH instead of SSHA or CH instead of COHA....or something like 'RT Hawk' instead of red-tailed hawk. It's usually something you can figure out, but on a forum like this you can certainly always ask for clarity. 

Further abbreviating the 4-char codes or using non-standard codes can lead to confusion, so I try to avoid it. 

For example, even experienced birders sometimes use CAGO for Canada Goose, ignoring the fact that Cackling Goose (CACG) and Canada Goose (CANG) can't be disambiguated when using CAGO.  Or, RTH may mean Ruby-throated Hummingbird rather than Red-tailed Hawk.

 

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29 minutes ago, birder123456 said:

or something like 'RT Hawk' instead of red-tailed hawk.

Ha ha. I just did that. I try to avoid using those standard acronyms because many people are not familiar with them and it is no big deal to use more than four letters here.

But I always use the correct acronym for SORA.

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4 minutes ago, eyesopen said:

Further abbreviating the 4-char codes or using non-standard codes can lead to confusion, so I try to avoid it. 

For example, even experienced birders sometimes use CAGO for Canada Goose, ignoring the fact that Cackling Goose (CACG) and Canada Goose (CANG) can't be disambiguated when using CAGO.  Or, RTH may mean Ruby-throated Hummingbird rather than Red-tailed Hawk.

 

 

2 minutes ago, douginBC said:

Ha ha. I just did that. I try to avoid using those standard acronyms because many people are not familiar with them and it is no big deal to use more than four letters here.

But I always use the correct acronym for SORA.

Yes, confusing....but I see it (and do it) often enough that it is worth mentioning. Usually these lazy abbreviations are within a context that makes them more meaningful to most people....but still something to be aware of haha. SORA is a good one....no confusion!

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1 hour ago, birder123456 said:

 

Yes, confusing....but I see it (and do it) often enough that it is worth mentioning. Usually these lazy abbreviations are within a context that makes them more meaningful to most people....but still something to be aware of haha. SORA is a good one....no confusion!

So, does SORA stand for Southern Raven??? :D 

Just kidding!!!

  • Haha 2

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On 1/18/2018 at 6:53 PM, douginBC said:

"I agree with the fact that the prey is a dove generally would mean a COHA but I have even seen RTHA dove hunting so that not definitive in itself."

I think the question here was whether or not it was a Coop or a Sharpie, in which case the prey size would suggest Coop. It is clearly not a RT Hawk or any kind of buteo. 

Perhaps people misunderstood my comment. The suggestion was made that is it was likely a COHA instead of SSHA because a COHA is more likely to prey on doves than a SSHA. That is a true statement, but I was just countering that birds are not always predictable in terms of behavior. I have seen RTHA prey on doves as well even though that isn't really "how they behave."  I am sure that even though SSHA usually prey on songbirds a large (or desperate or lucky) one might take a dove. I have seen COHA preying on rats in my yard more than once even though they usually prey on other birds. I was not insinuating it was a RTHA.

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