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RE: bcintbird-pics golden moment Rick Howie Fri Feb 03 22:04:36 2012

HI Alistair: I hope that I did not appear picayune, but by nature, I can be
somewhat ....well, picayune perhaps.  I thought that your images provided a
teachable moment which does not come along often with Golden Eagle images in
our group.  Perhaps the differences are a trifling matter for some and I
acknowledge that in a blog to be enjoyed by the general public, one cannot
become too esoteric.  For the birdwatching fraternity however, perhaps no
detail is too minor to overlook. 

 

I agree that you should allot more than 2 hours to learn all there is about
birds. I recommend no less than 5 but a good solid 6 could get you to the
head of the class . By then, your plumage descriptions will  be seeking
parity with those  "in hand"  exposes from  Barry Lancaster that usually
exceed those from us wired to the end of a spyglass.

 

Well, it is all in good fun that we seek to know more but with some species,
we should remember not to be too smug about putting a fine point on some
traits such as age, sub-species or other subtleties if we do not have a bird
in hand. The very nature of field marks is that they usually describe the
most typical of situations  with the caveat that some characteristics are
not immutable. I appreciate your good spirit in allowing the use of your
images by nits like me who pick.

 

Rick Howie  

Kamloops

 

From: [EMAIL PROTECTED]
[mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED] On Behalf Of Alistair Fraser
Sent: February-03-12 4:09 PM
To: [EMAIL PROTECTED]
Subject: Re: bcintbird-pics golden moment

 

Rick,

 

I see, by reading Liguori, that there may indeed be more involved in
understanding birds than is summarized in Sibley. Sigh..., and I had put
aside two hours to master all the rest of birding. Nuts, I just may just
have to double that time. 

 

Seriously though, I recognized at the time I wrote about the Golden Eagle,
that my (well, Michael McMann's) bird was beyond a juvenile. In the end, I
guess the problem with blogging is a matter of deciding to whom is one
communicating: Myself? Specialists? Public? 

 

I normally claim that I write merely for my own edification (in truth,
amusement). And yet, I compromised by using the publicly accessible term,
juvenile. I have now changed that text to read:

 

The pattern of white on its underwing, suggests that this is bird is not an
adult. It is perhaps two to three years old.

If further insights are offered, they will be reflected in my text about the
eagle. Thank you, I had not seen the Liguori article. 

 

 

Alistair

 

On 2012-02-03, at 9:51 AM, Rick Howie wrote:





Here is a reference paper which has some valuable tips for Golden Eagle
aging.  http://www.aba.org/birding/v36n3p278.pdf.  Liguori uses the term
"basic" which reads as "sub-adult" from Clark & Wheeler which I used.  Some
aspects of this article suggest that your bird could be in sub-adult or
basic ll plumage, putting it a bit younger than my initial thoughts. I will
equivocate on age precision if only to attest on the tricky nature of the
business. But I stand on the notion that it is older than juvenile.

 

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