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Midwestern (Missouri) U.S. bird with gray head feathers (1 Viewer)

Piaget

Member
Hi , A friend sent me this photo to ID a bird with 2 gray head feathers as he put it. This person is not a birder & the photo is not good. It was taken in the St. Louis Missouri area in the Midwestern United States. It is not a tufted titmouse or horned larkspur or gray catbird I believe. Any help will be appreciated. It was taken on 2 nov 2020. Thanks Piaget Resized_20201105_094117.jpg
 

Piaget

Member
Thanks Andrew , I believe you are correct. I was focusing too much on his statement of gray head feathers & that was all I was looking for. Piaget
 

nartreb

Speak softly and carry a long lens
It's most certainly neither a lark nor a longspur, and no catbird either.

On overall shape, plus the stripes visible in the tail, it's definitely a wren. Of the local wrens, Carolina is the clear best fit: chestnutty color, strong white eye stripe, tail shape.

But that grey head color, with grey shoulder stripes, is quite odd. My best guess is it's some kind of stain, maybe even paint. They do like to squeeze in tight spaces for nesting, resting, and for hunting insects.
Would love to see another photo of this bird.
 

nartreb

Speak softly and carry a long lens
I'm wondering if the grey isn't on the bird, but is on a window or mesh between the camera and the bird.

Yeah, that would do it. There's definitely some kind of screen in front of the camera. A stray bit of featherdown stuck to the screen would do the trick.
 

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