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Old 04-29-2020, 04:03 PM
 
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I was hoping maybe someone could identify it by my description.


It was about the size of a robin, and actually, I thought it WAS a robin at first. It had a dark head, a white chest, mostly dark wings, but there was an orangey-red patch on each wing, and it seemed like maybe some white in the wings as well.


It WASN'T a robin
It WASN'T a red-winged blackbird.


Probably should mention I live in the St. Louis MO area.




(Just in case anyone was going to suggest those.)


It came around the bird feeder a couple of times. Any ideas? It occurred to me that it MIGHT'VE been a juvenile/baby hawk or something?

Last edited by Sassybluesy; 04-29-2020 at 04:11 PM..
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Old 04-29-2020, 07:50 PM
 
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Spotted towhee, maybe? I’ve never seen one, but here’s a picture:

http://https://www.straight.com/life/620806/five-birding-hot-spots-around-vancouver
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Old 04-29-2020, 08:54 PM
 
Location: British Columbia ~🌄 ☀️ ♥ 🍁 ♥ ☀️🌄~
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Some kinds of juncos get mistaken for robins. Did it look anything like the Dark Eyed Oregon junco in this photo gallery of juncos? https://www.thespruce.com/pictures-of-juncos-4121961





.
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Old 04-30-2020, 05:13 AM
 
Location: The Driftless Area, WI
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Both good guesses ^^^ but OR Junco is rather smaller than a robin.


I remember the first time I saw a Towhee-- I thought it was a robin either having an epileptic fit or fighting with a snake-- It kept spastically jumping up and down in some fallen leaves under a bush. Then I read that that's a common behavior for them.


Tangelag's ref site didn't come thru for me. Try this for pics of Towhee: https://www.bing.com/images/search?q=towhee&FORM=HDRSC2


A more remote possibility is the Red Breasted Grosbeak: https://www.bing.com/images/search?q...8C9B2ABA808B81
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Old 04-30-2020, 07:21 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tangelag View Post
Spotted towhee, maybe? I’ve never seen one, but here’s a picture:

http://https://www.straight.com/life...ound-vancouver

Ding ding ding ding! I think you're right, that it was a spotted towee. It looked very much like the picture, except more dark grayish. Maybe a female? And I thought the orange was on the wings...but I didn't get a super great stare at it. When I got up to get a closer look, it saw me and took off.


Interesting! Seems like it was out of its range though. We had strong storms the night before last. Do you think it could've been blown off course?
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Old 04-30-2020, 08:14 AM
 
Location: Boonies of N. Alabama
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Just for future reference, I have an app that really helps with bird identification from the Cornell Bird Lab University... it's free and pretty handy to have if you're interested -

https://merlin.allaboutbirds.org/
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Old 04-30-2020, 09:24 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by writerwife View Post
Just for future reference, I have an app that really helps with bird identification from the Cornell Bird Lab University... it's free and pretty handy to have if you're interested -

https://merlin.allaboutbirds.org/


Thank you!
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Old 05-01-2020, 03:21 PM
 
Location: on the wind
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sassybluesy View Post
Ding ding ding ding! I think you're right, that it was a spotted towee. It looked very much like the picture, except more dark grayish. Maybe a female? And I thought the orange was on the wings...but I didn't get a super great stare at it. When I got up to get a closer look, it saw me and took off.


Interesting! Seems like it was out of its range though. We had strong storms the night before last. Do you think it could've been blown off course?
Its spring. Bigger weather front transitions and lots of birds covering longer distances. They can get blown around along the way. Less common species and accidentals most likely in spring and fall. There might be more around than you've noticed before, but because they just pass through briefly don't "register". Fairly secretive, quiet underbrush bird if not singing. Also, there are genetic intergrades so a range of characteristics across the US.
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Old 05-01-2020, 03:42 PM
 
Location: Southwest Washington State
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We have the towhees in the PNW, but I never saw one in St. Louis.

There is another Towhee—a rufous sided towhee. It is possible that bird matches what you saw better.
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Old 05-02-2020, 07:21 AM
 
Location: Boonies of N. Alabama
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Last yr I started seeing Eastern Towhee here for the first time. Pretty bird.
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