Migration of White-crowned Sparrow subspecies

Drew WeberIdentification, MigrationLeave a Comment

David Sibley has been putting up some interesting posts on bird ranges and migration based on banding recoveries. His latest post looks into the migration patterns of different subspecies of White-crowned Sparrows and questions the occurence of Gamble’s White-crowned Sparrow in the northeast based on information from recoveries. Follow the link below to read his whole post. White-crowned Sparrow subspecies … Read More

Western vs Semipalmated Sandpiper

Drew WeberBird Finding Tips, IdentificationLeave a Comment

Much has been written about the identification of Semipalmated and Western Sandpipers. Most of it focuses on minutia, those little differences in plumage that are indeed very helpful in distinguishing these very similar species. The problem is, in order to use all those fine plumage details successfully, a good understanding of how to age shorebirds is required. Rather than rehashing … Read More

Shorebird molt illustrated

Drew WeberIdentification, MigrationLeave a Comment

Image via Wikipedia Check out the Dig Deep blog for a great primer on shorebird feather wear and molt. There are some great animated images that show the effects of wear on feathers and the overall appearance of the birds. With southbound migration just beginning, its a good time to brush up on this.  The internet is an incredible resource, … Read More

Do you know the immatures?

Drew WeberIdentification1 Comment

Summer birding can be downright drab, depending on where you spend your time. Breeders have settled into their territories and are busy raising young while northbound migration has pretty much wrapped up. Soon these baby birds will have fledged and we will be seeing them out of the nest. Identifying these young birds can be extremely frustrating as they seem … Read More