Not sure what Im seeing here
Outdoor Ontario

Not sure what Im seeing here

Wulff · 6 · 3061

Wulff

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I thought when I saw it might have been a Red Tail. The only other distinguishing feature that the pictures don't show was its yellow eye which only shows when I heavily crop it.

Also are there any books that offer more images of raptors than the standard 1 image per that Im seeing in the usual guides? Most of those tend to show perched and the backside rather than in flight and the underbody which is what Im normally using as my reference.

Thanks




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« Last Edit: February 25, 2011, 12:56:01 am by Wulff »


Andreas Jonsson

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Wulff,

nice photos. That's a female Northern Harrier. You can tell from the size, white-brown speckled plumage and long slender wings (also the face gives you a hint). It could perhaps be confused with an immature Northern goshawk, although, while it has the same colour scale, the im. goshawk gives a heavier chunkier impression. And of course, if you  took these pics recently, there shouldn't be any immatures around this time of year.

Since I am not from North America, I dont't know much about the raptor litterature here, but comprehensive general guides, such as the "Sibley Guide to Birds", have paintings of several plumages and both sitting and flying birds. In general, however, I don't think Sibley's paintings of birds of prey are that great (he's very good with other species though). I usually use Sibley and Kaufmann's "Birds of North America" in combination, to get the advantages of both paintings and photos.
« Last Edit: April 23, 2006, 06:24:40 pm by Andreas Jonsson »


Wulff

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Thanks much.

Im using the ROM guide currently and while its pretty good, most of the raptors Im seeing are always hard to ID. Funny thing is the guide says the section dealing with sparrows, Warblers, wrens etc are usually the hardest but were doing pretty good with IDing those. Its the hawks that are proving really difficult, I think were batting about 10% :)

Well atleast now I have female N.H. to catalogue and bookmark for future reference.
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« Last Edit: February 25, 2011, 12:56:07 am by Wulff »


momofjbsl

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I always thought that one could see a while rump on a northern harrier.  Or is that only if you see them from above  :?:
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 pm by momofjbsl »


cloaca

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Personally, I prefer the National Geographic guide for things like hawks and ducks.  

If you want to get a book specifically for hawks, though, I think that "Hawks in Flight" by Pete Dunne is well worth the $20 you'd pay for it.

Oh, and the ROM guide isn't really good for much.  It's time to get a new guide!



>>I always thought that one could see a while rump on a northern harrier. Or is that only if you see them from above<<

Indeed. The rump is on the dorsal side of the bird. But, if you look closely, I think you can see a hint of it in the bottom picture.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 pm by cloaca »


Kin Lau

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The face does it for me in this case.

The ROM book is good for an idea of distributions and sessions for certain birds, but otherwise, we use the Kaufman as a pocket guide, and the Sibley's when we need more detail.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 pm by Kin Lau »