Monday, August 31, 2009

Another county bird

No birding last week end. I wish I could have, but honestly, a 2 days week end per week seems to be a good 4-5 day short of what I need to rest, take care of my family, staying in good shape (I try to hit the gym 3 times a week), and go birding. But the good news is next week end we will go for a short 2 days trip at pointe Pelee National Park, on the other side of the border. In addition to the bird migration, this should be a great time of the year to watch the monarch migration. I am looking forward to see high concentration of butterflies who are supposed to go all the way to Mexico.
Even without birding, I was able to add a new backyard (and county!) bird to my list. Well it is not really a county bird, since I remember I have seen one last year in the Arb, but for some reason I lost my list and did not record into ebird (my rule is, if it's not written, it does not count). That was a yellow-bellied flycatcher.
Now, I am always puzzled by one thing on the yellow-bellied flycatchers. They always (I guess the two of them I have seen, so it is hard to generalize) seem to be much brighter than my trusty field guide (the Sibley). I know they are subject to color variation, and the bird itself was perched in the late afternoon sun, so it might appear a lot more yellow than in reality (if I remember, it was a fairly similar light condition last year), but the Sibley paintings are far, far from being as bright as my two birds. In addition, he describes this species as "best identified by voice", which I found a bit surprising.
Of course, one explanation is I don't see (of ID) the drab ones, only the 5% of birds that are bright enough to bring my attention.

I don't see myself posting in the next week or so (next time should be on my way back from Pointe Pelee), but there is another great, great bird songs web site I found

Great recordings from all other the american birds. The site works like a database where everyone can add his recordings.

Ciao all


Hilke Breder said...

Enjoy your trip to pointe Pelee! I have looked at it on Google Earth hoping to combine it with a trip to Michigan this week, but it's just too far. Re Monarchs, have seen only two (!) so far - must be the rainy cold summer. Hope you'll see many more.

Jochen said...

"Best identified by song" is a phrase Sibley includes in all the Empids.
I have also found them (the roughly 5 to 10 I saw) to be quite obvious, a dark, rich yellow-green. Whatever, maybe I have also missed the pale ones or mistaken them for another Empid.

Have tons of fun in Pelee, and all the best to the three of you!
Wish I was there, too.