Subject: [Tweeters] Hermit thrush in my yard? Date: Nov 30 13:36:31 2014 From: Emily Birchman - stollea at gmail.com
I just saw a bird in my backyard that I think may have been a hermit thrush, and I am frankly shocked because I do not think I have ever heard one sing, let alone see one! I'm writing this to see what else I should check it against?
My initial gut reaction when I saw its shape was to assume it was a sparrow, but on the large side for a sparrow. I then got the binoculars and checked it out and thought it looked like a Swainson's thrush (a species I have seen before), which I assume would be crazy at this time of year as my understanding is that they migrate, so I got out the Sibley guide and when I saw the picture of the hermit thrush it really does seem to match (definitely more closely than with Swainson's). Also I see that they are listed as the only thrush likely to be found here in Nov-March. The bird had a clear white eye ring and a rufous tail that contrasted with its brown back. It had dark spotting on its breast - my impression was maybe less spotting than I see in the Sibley illustration, but definitely dark spots near the top of the breast. It landed on the ground and was flicking its wings and tail as it poked around for a minute or so, before taking off. Like I said, I didn't get to compare it to any other birds as it was by itself, but I would say it was a little larger than a song sparrow, but definitely smaller than a robin.
I looked through all the sparrows and did not see anything that fit. Any other thoughts on what else it could have been?
I'm not an expert when it comes to birding so I welcome any other suggestions of what this might have been. I just did not expect to see this bird in my yard, so I am having a hard time believing that's what it was!
Thanks, Emily Birchman, Kenmore, WA stollea at gmail.com -------------- next part -------------- An HTML attachment was scrubbed... URL: http://mailman1.u.washington.edu/pipermail/tweeters/attachments/20141130/8a9cc83f/attachment.htm