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XeeD
Jul 9, 2001
I see invisible dumptrucks.

Is there a good resource for IDing a bird by its call on mobile? I keep hearing one across the way that I can't see and its bugging me that I can't figure out what it is. I already know its probably just going to be some sort of pigeon or owl, but my brain needs to know.

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StrixNebulosa
Feb 14, 2012

You cheated not only the game, but yourself.
But most of all, you cheated BABA


lord funk posted:

Saw Snow Buntings for the first time!





oh my god they're perfect

BeastOfExmoor
Aug 19, 2003

I will be gone, but not forever.


XeeD posted:

Is there a good resource for IDing a bird by its call on mobile? I keep hearing one across the way that I can't see and its bugging me that I can't figure out what it is. I already know its probably just going to be some sort of pigeon or owl, but my brain needs to know.

People have built apps that try to do this, but I don't think it's at the point where it's reliable at all. The best thing to do is make and audio recording with your phone, either by using a note app or by just recording a video, and post it somewhere where people who can ID birds by sound can listen to it.

BetterLekNextTime
Jul 22, 2008

It's all a matter of perspective...


Grimey Drawer

XeeD posted:

Is there a good resource for IDing a bird by its call on mobile? I keep hearing one across the way that I can't see and its bugging me that I can't figure out what it is. I already know its probably just going to be some sort of pigeon or owl, but my brain needs to know.

If you are in North America, let us know roughly where you are, as much description of the sound as you can remember (like how many notes, were they all the same length? Same pitch?. etc) and when during the day/night you are hearing it, and we can try to stick a name on it. Worst case, we can give you a list of the owls and doves in your area and you can look up their sounds online and see what matches best.

XeeD
Jul 9, 2001
I see invisible dumptrucks.

BetterLekNextTime posted:

If you are in North America, let us know roughly where you are, as much description of the sound as you can remember (like how many notes, were they all the same length? Same pitch?. etc) and when during the day/night you are hearing it, and we can try to stick a name on it. Worst case, we can give you a list of the owls and doves in your area and you can look up their sounds online and see what matches best.

I'm in north central Saskatchewan, and its always three even "whoooo" calls about a second long, usually in the middle of the afternoon. Low and quiet like a pigeon/dove cooing, but without the warble they usually have. Or the first half of a loon call. Honestly, it sounds like blowing across the top of a mostly full beer bottle.

Man, you'd think something this simple would be way easier to actually put into words.

YggiDee
Sep 12, 2007




This is the dumb/obvious suggestion, but could it be a Mourning Dove?

BetterLekNextTime
Jul 22, 2008

It's all a matter of perspective...


Grimey Drawer

I'd look at Great Horned Owl and Eurasian Collared Dove too.

XeeD
Jul 9, 2001
I see invisible dumptrucks.

YggiDee posted:

This is the dumb/obvious suggestion, but could it be a Mourning Dove?

From what I can hear on youtube, this is really close, but there's no rise in pitch, its just three even tones.

BeastOfExmoor
Aug 19, 2003

I will be gone, but not forever.


BetterLekNextTime posted:

I'd look at Great Horned Owl and Eurasian Collared Dove too.

Yea, Eurasian-Collared Dove is what came to my mind if Mourning Dove is ruled out. Not sure if they're really made it quite to where XeeD lives though.

https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide...red-Dove/sounds

BetterLekNextTime
Jul 22, 2008

It's all a matter of perspective...


Grimey Drawer

Collared doves are expanding northward pretty rapidly, so it doesn't seem impossible, but yeah, even looking at the "sightings" tab on the all about birds page seems like it would be unusual there (for now).

Maybe regular pigeon (i.e. Rock Dove) or an escaped pet dove or something?

Fabulousity
Dec 29, 2008

= (Displacement through a hetero medium) / Time


Nap Ghost

Attracted an unexpected guest after an easy meal:



It was carefully digging through the brick trying to pick out something specific. Sunflower seeds maybe?

lord funk
Feb 16, 2004



Fabulousity posted:

Attracted an unexpected guest after an easy meal:



It was carefully digging through the brick trying to pick out something specific. Sunflower seeds maybe?

What's up Pileated buddy! I have been walking the same park for two weeks trying to get my first shot of one, and just yesterday I finally got it:

Fitzy Fitz
May 14, 2005




Great photos. I really need a zoom lens.

A couple of Mississippi kites have been circling over my house lately. It's cool watching them dart around and eat bugs midflight.

Internet Explorer
Jun 1, 2005





Oven Wrangler

A handful of Robins have been coming to our bird baths to drink. Neat to see them hang out, even if they don't eat birdseed.

Had to take our bird feeders down a few months ago and I've just been throwing a couple handfuls of seed in our planters and honestly I think the birds like it even better!

Fitzy Fitz
May 14, 2005




Yeah I got fed up refilling my feeder every time a squirrel dumped it out, so I set out a flat log and poured seed in it, and tbh it was really cool.

BetterLekNextTime
Jul 22, 2008

It's all a matter of perspective...


Grimey Drawer

Fabulousity posted:

Attracted an unexpected guest after an easy meal:



It was carefully digging through the brick trying to pick out something specific. Sunflower seeds maybe?

Not sure if it would be going for seeds or going for the suet between the seeds? Dang I'm jealous though. They're pretty hard to run into where I am.

I did get to watch acorn woodpeckers and also a pair of downys feeding a nest today. And yesterday I found a bushtit nest in the process of fledging that I must have walked past 20 times in the past month.

lord funk
Feb 16, 2004



Fitzy Fitz posted:

Great photos. I really need a zoom lens.
Yeah I love birding with the big camera zoom. It's especially fun when you see a bird you've seen many times, but they're in a nice light or something for a good shot.

Joburg
May 19, 2013



Fun Shoe

I was working on my electric goat fence and I startled a robin off her nest. She made it right next to the fence charger so hopefully that will keep the local feral cats away.

I moved that red wire so it won’t be in her way anymore.

Cythereal
Nov 8, 2009



I need help identifying a bird I saw on my lunch-time walk around campus and down to the lake with boardwalk. I don't have a photo, just a description.

It looked like a duck in body shape, and it was mainly dark brown - not streaky or mottled like a female mallard, but a seemingly uniform dark brown, maybe a patch of lighter brown. Black eyes, and there was a buff-colored eyepatch, teardrop shaped with the round end around the eye and the tail towards the back of the head. It was seated on a mostly submerged branch and in the shade, and I declined to get too close to it, so that's the best description I have. I'm in central Florida for reference.

Fitzy Fitz
May 14, 2005




Bufflehead?

Cythereal
Nov 8, 2009



Fitzy Fitz posted:

Bufflehead?

One in Florida would be extraordinarily rare (bird guides put Florida straight up outside their range), and the eyepatch on the bird I saw was around the eye itself, not under it.


Edit: Think I found it. Pretty sure what I saw was a female wood duck.

Cythereal fucked around with this message at 17:05 on May 15, 2020

Cythereal
Nov 8, 2009



Yeah, it was definitely a female wood duck.

It's getting uncomfortably hot out for my normal lunch-time walks at work down to the lake and back, but it's been a good time for seeing baby birds. For the past week or so I've been seeing several wood and mallard duck hens with broods of ducklings in tow, common gallinules with their chicks, juvenile red-winged blackbirds and boat-tailed grackles, and in the last few days, a couple of juvenile green herons following one of their parents around.

Also saw a northern flicker on my walk today, only my second time seeing one here in Florida.

lord funk
Feb 16, 2004



Yeah I was excited to catch a picture of a loon with a baby, but now that the weather is nice all the boaters are out on Lake Superior. I don't really see any water fowl anymore, and I think it's because the boats scare them away

Fabulousity
Dec 29, 2008

= (Displacement through a hetero medium) / Time


Nap Ghost

Don't mess with loons ya'll

quote:

And in a contest between the bald eagle, America's national bird, and a common loon, which is featured on Canada's dollar coin, few would bet on the latter to come out the victor.

But sometimes the underdog comes out on top, as was revealed when an eagle was found dead in the water near a dead loon chick in a Maine lake.

A necropsy revealed he was killed by a stab to the heart from a loon's beak.

Baby loons are common prey for eagles, which are fearsome hunters.

Mizuti
Jan 28, 2007

What a singularly inappropriate moment you've chosen to assert your pedantry.



I witnessed something unusual yesterday. I was sitting in my parents' backyard in the evening, about 30 feet away from a nest box where a pair of house sparrows had set up shop. It's partially covered by a bush for cover. I kept an eye on the box, but never noticed a parent present. After about an hour, I saw a rare visitor -- a blue jay. They are active in that neighborhood and can be heard calling, but almost never appear on my parents' property. It perched on a nearby black walnut tree, fluttered down to that bush, and made a beeline for the nest box. One quick pluck and it pulled out a nestling and flew away.

I had to console my parents. Even though the house sparrow is invasive in this region, and the rate of survival for baby birds is low, they were quite fond of the babies and it was hard for them to see it happen. I wouldn't be surprised if that blue jay or another predator returned for seconds, either.

I wonder where the parents were during this? (I know that parents on the nest will sometimes abandon them if they see a predator twice their size approaching, so having a parent present doesn't always protect the nest.)

BeastOfExmoor
Aug 19, 2003

I will be gone, but not forever.


I had to chase off an Eastern Gray Squirrel (invasive here on the west coast) from the Steller's Jay nest under my deck this morning. The general population would be really horrified if they knew how many cute baby animals are killed by other cute animals in their backyards every year.

BetterLekNextTime
Jul 22, 2008

It's all a matter of perspective...


Grimey Drawer

Mizuti posted:

...BLUE JAY WINS...

I wonder where the parents were during this? (I know that parents on the nest will sometimes abandon them if they see a predator twice their size approaching, so having a parent present doesn't always protect the nest.)

One of those things that separates "animal lover" from "naturalist." It can be really hard for some people to enjoy the entirety of the circle of life. For what it's worth, Blue Jay populations have been way down in some places so this is a good thing, especially given the non-native prey.

If the nestlings are old enough to be crawling close to the nest hole, they may need a ton of food right now and be able to thermoregulate on their own quite well. Both parents may be scrambling to get enough food for the brood, so might not be on hand to defend the nest box. I don't know much about the details of blue jay behavior but they might be tactical enough to make their move when the parents are both gone.

Cythereal
Nov 8, 2009



BetterLekNextTime posted:

I don't know much about the details of blue jay behavior but they might be tactical enough to make their move when the parents are both gone.

They're corvids, so they're definitely intelligent enough for that. The jay may very well have marked down the location of the nest in memory, noticed the parents were gone when passing by, and grabbed dinner.

My favorite online bird guide notes that going for nestlings and eggs is a known, if rare, behavior for blue jays.

Mizuti
Jan 28, 2007

What a singularly inappropriate moment you've chosen to assert your pedantry.



BetterLekNextTime posted:

One of those things that separates "animal lover" from "naturalist." It can be really hard for some people to enjoy the entirety of the circle of life. For what it's worth, Blue Jay populations have been way down in some places so this is a good thing, especially given the non-native prey.

If the nestlings are old enough to be crawling close to the nest hole, they may need a ton of food right now and be able to thermoregulate on their own quite well. Both parents may be scrambling to get enough food for the brood, so might not be on hand to defend the nest box. I don't know much about the details of blue jay behavior but they might be tactical enough to make their move when the parents are both gone.

Nature, red in tooth and claw. It's very hard for many people to cope with the reality baby animals face. Well, at least this one helped a declining species.

What I could see of the unfortunate nestling looked very pink and immature, so I doubt it was able to thermoregulate yet.

Cythereal
Nov 8, 2009



I saw bird on baby bird violence during my lunch break today.

Common gallinule walking on the lake shore with a couple chicks in tow, they walked too close to a great blue heron. Heron took two steps over, shot out its neck, grabbed one of the chicks, and down the hatch, all in the span of a second or two.

BetterLekNextTime
Jul 22, 2008

It's all a matter of perspective...


Grimey Drawer

Next week is Black Birders Week! Passing this along in case this applies to anyone here or anyone you know...

https://twitter.com/n8ture_al/statu...3471873/photo/1

This thread hasn't drifted too far into conservation/politics/feral cat rants and that's probably a good thing, but I figured on the heels of the Central Park incident I could indulge. Remember to be allies of other birders and not just the birds. I just read an essay by an African American wildlife biologist who literally had to find a new graduate project because there were too many white supremacists in the area he was planning to work.

Cythereal
Nov 8, 2009



I've started keeping a daily record of the birds I see on my usual lunchtime walk, down to a wooded lake and out on the boardwalk.

Every Day

Red-Winged Blackbird
Common Grackle
Boat-Tailed Grackle
Muscovy Duck
Common Gallinule
Great Blue Heron
Tricolor Heron

Most Days

Green Heron
Purple Gallinule
Mallard Duck
Little Blue Heron

Some Days

Wood Duck
American Coot
Anhinga

Rarely

Limpkin
Least Bittern
Northern Flicker


My favorites are the Common Gallinules, the good old marsh chickens. They make the oddest noises, and have been the source of many frustrations and I look around for the source of some noise I don't recognize, only for a gallinule to walk out of some reeds making weird noises as it goes.

BetterLekNextTime
Jul 22, 2008

It's all a matter of perspective...


Grimey Drawer

I love me some least bittern. That's pretty rad. Yeah, coots and gallinules are pretty entertaining being bastards to each other.

My best local birds right now are great-horned owl nest that's still got fluffy babies in it. Not awesome for photography but it's right in the parking lot of the regional park near my house so they are pretty chill with people.

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Cythereal
Nov 8, 2009



That great blue heron that nommed the gallinule chick the other day (pretty sure it's the same heron, going by his breeding plumage) got a baby gator today while I was out walking. The gator was probably six to eight inches long, clearly just out of the nest, but still. I will never underestimate how hard a great blue can spear something with its beak again.

BetterLekNextTime posted:

I love me some least bittern. That's pretty rad.

I've seen both an adult and a juvenile so I'm pretty sure there's a family nesting in the area, but they're elusive birds at the best of times.

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