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Argentina - Northern Patagonia IDs 4 and 5

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Old Tuesday 19th December 2006, 14:50   #1
lockbreeze926
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Argentina - Northern Patagonia IDs 4 and 5

As per previous thread, two more obscure efforts.

The bird in Photos 1 and 2 was scrabbling on its own around the only piece of vegetation on an otherwise bare rocky mountain slope at around 3000 feet altitude. It looks like a sparrow of some sort, but matches nothing I can see in my field guide - my guess is that it might be an immature Rufous-Collared Sparrow,with the facial pattern just starting to appear (better discernible in the otherwise more-obscured photo). I think the red bill tends to support this, as well as general plumage and the abundance everywhere of the RCS - BUT the facial pattern, although vaguely outlined, seems slightly out of alignment and would a juvenile be this active this early in the Austral summer?

Photos 3 is a mystery. The bird flew into shot as I was looking at something else, hence it's way out of focus, and it flew very quickly. From my naked-eye observation, what the picture shows is correct - a finch-sized, stubby-billed bird, largely red-orange on the breast and crown with black and white longitudinal throat patches, darker (brown? grey?) on the nape and mantle. Habitat was urban-edge scrubland. The nearest ID stab I can make is a Rufous-Tailed Plantcutter, but that isn't very convincing.

John
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Old Tuesday 19th December 2006, 15:27   #2
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No idea for the first bird but i don't see why you're not convinced by the identification of the rufous-tailed plantcutter in the third pic.
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Old Tuesday 19th December 2006, 16:45   #3
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Can't help with the first, but second looks perfectly like Rufous-tailed Plantcutter to me.
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Old Wednesday 20th December 2006, 12:02   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jocateme
Can't help with the first, but second looks perfectly like Rufous-tailed Plantcutter to me.
First bird looks like a Sierra-finch to me, probably Mourning S-F. Have a look at this link (need to scroll down a lot) and look at the juv male:

http://www.fotosaves.com.ar/Patagonia_2006_En.htm

As for the plantcutter: http://www.avesdechile.cl/075en.htm looks good.

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Old Wednesday 20th December 2006, 12:59   #5
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Thanks to all contributors.

I agree the Mourning Sierra-Finch looks good - the suggested photo shows the red bill, whereas my field-guide shows a yellow one (described as "orange"......ah well).

Thanks again.
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Old Thursday 21st December 2006, 14:11   #6
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Originally Posted by lockbreeze926
I agree the Mourning Sierra-Finch looks good - the suggested photo shows the red bill, whereas my field-guide shows a yellow one (described as "orange"......ah well).
The bill-colours is variable. Breeding males have bright yellow bills, but non-br. males (as well juv. males) have brownish bills - often with a dull orange tinge.
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