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Old Monday 17th July 2017, 14:34   #1
lockbreeze926
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Ecuador - Western Andes/forest habitat

After extensive Fieldbook thumbing and Googling in speculation, I've managed to nail down (to my own satisfaction, anyway) most of the species encountered in Ecuador.

But not these...

1 is from June this year, in the Tandayapa Valley. I can't get close to an ID, beyond that it looks vaguely like a Leaftosser or Barbtail (although it's up on a wire in the rain), even a Pewee at a push but I don't like the lack of contrasting tones or that bill.

2 looks like an Empid or Contopus of some sort and it was taken in Feb/March (I forget where) so it could be a winter visitor.

3 should be a gimme, since it's in broad daylight for a change but I just can't find an illustration to match. Again, Feb/March, in Mindo and again it has a flycatcher vibe, but the round head...?

4 was taken at Bellavista in March and it seems to be in that Elaenia / Tyrannulet / Flycatcher / Pewee area, but it has a pretty big bill and a very rounded head (no tuft/crest).

Any suggestions/answers gratefully received (my excuse is the often-mysterious nature of the fieldbook, which suggests that the intensely turquoise-streaked Beryl-spangled Tanager roughly resembles a Starling).
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Old Monday 17th July 2017, 14:46   #2
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Maybe a Nunbird or Puffbird?

There are a couple that do sit right in the open like this.


A
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Old Monday 17th July 2017, 15:05   #3
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All four are Tyrant-Flycatchers

1. Smoke-coloured Pewee
2. Western Wood-Pewee, weird tail though
3. Bran-coloured Flycatcher
4. Ashy-headed Tyrannulet
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Old Monday 17th July 2017, 15:31   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Maffong View Post
All four are Tyrant-Flycatchers

1. Smoke-coloured Pewee
2. Western Wood-Pewee, weird tail though
3. Bran-coloured Flycatcher
4. Ashy-headed Tyrannulet
Thank you! The first three I can see, having now looked at images, rather than the fieldbook illustrations.

The fourth...I don't get any of the yellowish tones, nor the facial markings, which should be quite strong, although those might be features of the angle/light.

Thanks again.
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Old Monday 17th July 2017, 23:07   #5
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Maffong could you clarify why you've identified 4) as Ashy-headed? Would have expected at least some indication of strong black auricular patch even at this angle
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Old Monday 17th July 2017, 23:55   #6
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I guess you are right and Ashy-headed Tyrannulet is wrong. However what is throwing me more off than the weak auricular patch is more a) the lack of a white patch behind it, b) the bill shape and c) the heavy fringes on the tertials.
I initially identified it based on a Tyrannulet-jizz combined with two yellow wingbars, greyish forehead with white patch in front of the eye in combination with the location (Bellavista is on the western andean slope at ~2200m altitude)

A Flatbill seems to be abetter fit, but there are no Flatbills around Bellavista Cloudforest lodge or at all above 1700m on the western slope, which is what led me away from Flatbills in the first place.
But the more I look at the picture the more I believe it must be a Yellow-olive Flatbill and was actually taken well below Bellavista. What bothers me most with this ID though is the dark lower mandible of this bird.

Maybe someone else has a better idea?
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Old Tuesday 18th July 2017, 06:47   #7
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I agree that seems a better fit. I personally find these things difficult, partly because the illustrations in the various books (e. g. Peru guide, Northern South America guide) aren't great. Any tips?
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Old Tuesday 18th July 2017, 13:32   #8
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#4 clearly looks a Slaty-capped Flycatcher to me, a typical ingredient of mixed flocks in the area.
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Old Tuesday 18th July 2017, 13:47   #9
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I'm in the Slaty-capped camp.
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Old Tuesday 18th July 2017, 13:52   #10
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Unless I'm going mad (possible), No 1 is surely a Puffbird type - it looks very odd.

Agree on Bran-coloured Fly...

cheers, alan
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Old Tuesday 18th July 2017, 14:06   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lewis20126 View Post
Unless I'm going mad (possible), No 1 is surely a Puffbird type - it looks very odd.

Agree on Bran-coloured Fly...

cheers, alan
Seems like it. There are NO slate-coloured Puffbirds at all on the western slope of the Andes.

Slaty-capped Flycatcher is a very good fit, probably better than Yellow-olive Flatbill and occurs in higher parts.
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Old Tuesday 18th July 2017, 14:11   #12
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Agree #1 is a Smoke-colored Pewee. Only regular (though rarely encountered) puffbird in the Tandayapa area is the White-faced Nunbird which this clearly isn't.
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Old Tuesday 18th July 2017, 14:43   #13
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Sure 1 is Smoke-coloured Pewee, indeed!
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Old Tuesday 18th July 2017, 16:34   #14
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Just to pile on:

1 is definitely a Smoke-colored Pewee
2 is a E/W/Tropical Pewee
3 is definitely Bran-colored Flycatcher
4 is definitely Slaty-capped Flycatcher

Of course these are just opinions. 1,3,4 should not be controversial id's I don't think. Haven't been in that area in a while and do not recall which Contopus to expect there, but 2 is a Contopus that is not Olive-sided.

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Old Tuesday 18th July 2017, 17:30   #15
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On #2, the mostly dark bill and indistinct upper wingbar point toward Western Wood-Pewee, but probably not definitely. Neat tail molt; we don't get to see them in molt in the US.

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