Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Ensuring I'm right

I told you in my previous post that I had to make sure on some IDs I did out in the field by examining my photographs and field guides (including my new Crossley ID Guide, which is AWESOME! -- more on that later!). This is the post in which I'll ask you smarter birders to confirm my IDs to ensure I'm right and not counting lifers where there aren't any.

1. Sandwich Tern
Here, between the dancing Herring Gull and the bowing Royal Tern, I saw the black legs and feet, black bill, and shaggy erect crest. Unfortunately, this is a from-behind shot. But aren't that gull and ROYT cute doing their little jig? What do you think? Sandwich Tern?

2. Gull-billed Tern
Here, you can see that black cap going all the way down the back of the neck and the thick black bill, but why are his legs orange?
Something tells me this isn't a Gull-billed Tern. Now that I zoom in on the bill, it seems to be light-colored at the base and dark at the tip. Is this a Common Tern?

3. Franklin's Gull
Here, I saw the red bill and white eye arcs and the black hood that doesn't come around in an even line on the nape. Still, it's not a great pic.

Here's another:I can kinda see the white spots on the tail here too -- is this really a Franklin's, or is a Laughing Gull fooling me?

I have a bunch more shorebirds, but let's take it in small doses. Here, for your enjoyment, are some little adventure shots:an Indigo Blue snake found at Estero Llano Grande

the longhorn cow I named Hornrietta, who got kinda excited and started swinging her horns around when I fed her some grass. I took a step back. And then another step.

Finally, the armadillo we saw!


Matty Boy said...

Yay, armadillos!

John said...

That's not a Gull-billed Tern in #2. Those have a shorter and thicker bill than most terns, and that feature really stands out. I'm not sure exactly what it is, but I'd lean towards Forster's because of the pale wingtips.

I can't really help with the Franklin's/Laughing Gull distinction.

dguzman said...

Matty Boy--glad you like!

John--dangit. Okay. Thank you!

Rabbits' Guy said...

It's NOT a Sandwich Tern - it's a Tern Sandwich!!! (I don't know.)

Love that snake ...