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Recent content by Gillian_M

  1. Gillian_M

    Best/Favourite "Self-found" bird.

    I don't like chasing other people's birds much, or visiting the most popular birding spots here in Ottawa, Canada because of the crowds, so I'm always super excited when I find my own good birds at the relatively under-birded trails within 15 minutes of my house. Last fall I found an adult...
  2. Gillian_M

    Vireo ID needed - Cozumel, Mexico (April 20, 2016)

    Hi again, I saw a group of vireos in the trees at the ruins of San Gervasio. On one of them I saw a distinct black malar line that made me think Black-whiskered Vireo, a species I'd never seen before. I don't think it's the same individual I photographed (photos below), though I'm wondering...
  3. Gillian_M

    Three Flycatchers from Cozumel Mexico (April 19-20, 2016)

    Hi everyone, I went to Cozumel last week - my first time to Mexico - and although I studied madly on the birds most likely to be seen on my trip, the flycatchers remain a difficult group for me when they are not singing. Still, I think I may have ID'ed two of them and have an idea about the...
  4. Gillian_M

    Grackles in Florida

    Thanks Chris. Sibley's does mention that Common Grackles in Florida are smaller than other grackles, so I knew not to expect them to look the way they do here. Here is another photo of the bird in photo # 4 where his beak is closed. He seems to have pale eyes that are bluish, not yellow...
  5. Gillian_M

    Grackles in Florida

    Hi all, I just got back from my first birding trip to the USA yesterday, chiefly in the Everglades in Florida (all I can say is WOW!). Just when I thought I had the Boat-tailed Grackles and Common Grackles figured out, I spotted a couple of blackbirds that looked different. All were seen on...
  6. Gillian_M

    Which redpoll? Ottawa, Canada

    Thanks everyone. I guess I'll have to keep looking for my first Hoary!
  7. Gillian_M

    Which redpoll? Ottawa, Canada

    It's been a long time since I've posted here, but I need some help with a redpoll I saw two days ago at a feeder I frequent. It looked a little bit whiter than the redpolls it was associating with, and has the small bill I associate with Hoary Redpolls (Carduelis hornemanni). This is the best...
  8. Gillian_M

    Which swallow? Ottawa, Canada

    Awesome, thanks for the confirmations! Another year-bird for me today!
  9. Gillian_M

    Which swallow? Ottawa, Canada

    Hello! I was at the river today and had a small number of swallows hawking for insects. I can identify Tree and Barn Swallow on the wing, but there were some brown swallows which I couldn't identify. I found two perching in a tree, and got pictures of them both. The angle is not great...
  10. Gillian_M

    Leucism, is it common?

    Hi ferret (may I call you ferret?!!! ;) ) Leucism in birds is not uncommon, but leucistic birds are usually few and far between. I've seen two since I started birdwatching a few years ago, one a goldfinch with white patches on her wings, the other a crow with white wings, and photographers...
  11. Gillian_M

    Juvenile Accipiter - Ottawa, ON

    Hi Ken, I really can't say whether it was close in size to Red-tailed Hawk or not. I am used to seeing them perching, but they usually fly away before I can get that close! The streaks look better for Cooper's Hawk than Sharp-shinned, IMO. I'm confused about the squarish tail, however, and...
  12. Gillian_M

    Juvenile Accipiter - Ottawa, ON

    These guys get me almost every time! At first (from a distance) I thought this was a Red-tailed Hawk with the pale breast and white spotting on its brown back....once I got closer I saw the tail. Fortunately he didn't fly off as soon as I got out of the car, so I was able to get some photos...
  13. Gillian_M

    Which plovers? Presqu'ile PP, Ontario

    Okay, thanks for confirming Black-bellied!
  14. Gillian_M

    Which plovers? Presqu'ile PP, Ontario

    I went to Presqu'ile Provincial Park last weekend to enjoy the shorebird migration. This beautiful park is located on Lake Ontario between Kingston and Toronto. I don't have much experience with Pluvialis plovers in the fall as they don't linger in Ottawa, where I'm from. They are most likely...
  15. Gillian_M

    Which flycatcher? Ottawa, ON

    Thanks for the responses. The head didn't look dark enough to me for a phoebe, and it wasn't flicking its tail at all (however, it was preening at the time, so it may have been distracted). Thanks again!