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Updated on Friday, February 5 at 05:09 AM EST
The most recently received Mail is at the top.


Ural Owl,©BirdQuest

5 Feb No Subject [phil barnett ]
5 Feb No Subject [phil barnett ]
5 Feb Greater White-fronted Goose identification [phil barnett ]
4 Feb Sexing Northern Shrikes in the Field? [Jon Ruddy ]
4 Feb Re: "Interesting" juvenile Petrochelidon Swallow in Nebraska [Sam Manning ]
4 Feb Re: "Interesting" juvenile Petrochelidon Swallow in Nebraska [Ross Silcock ]
4 Feb Re: "Interesting" juvenile Petrochelidon Swallow in Nebraska [Tony Leukering ]
4 Feb Re: "Interesting" juvenile Petrochelidon Swallow in Nebraska [David Sibley ]
3 Feb "Interesting" juvenile Petrochelidon Swallow in Nebraska [Sam Manning ]
3 Feb Re: Burrowing Owl subspecies ID [Phil Davis ]
3 Feb Re: Burrowing Owl subspecies ID [David Sibley ]
3 Feb Re: Burrowing Owl subspecies ID [Wayne Hoffman ]
3 Feb Re: Burrowing Owl subspecies ID [Rex Rowan ]
3 Feb Re: Burrowing Owl subspecies ID [Tony Leukering ]
3 Feb Re: Burrowing Owl subspecies ID [Terry Bronson ]
3 Feb Re: Burrowing Owl subspecies ID [Tony Leukering ]
3 Feb Burrowing Owl subspecies ID [Nick Bonomo ]
26 Jan Re: Eurasian Wigeon and hybrid question ["Lethaby, Nick" ]
25 Jan Re: Eurasian Wigeon and hybrid question []
25 Jan Re: Eurasian Wigeon and hybrid question [Joseph Morlan ]
25 Jan Re: Eurasian Wigeon and hybrid question [Tony Leukering ]
25 Jan Eurasian Wigeon and hybrid question [Ken Schneider ]
25 Jan Re: hummingbird in Mississippi [Jason Hoeksema ]
25 Jan Re: hummingbird in Mississippi [Ian McLaren ]
24 Jan Re: hummingbird in Mississippi [Jason Hoeksema ]
24 Jan hummingbird in Mississippi [Jason Hoeksema ]
24 Jan Re: Hornked Lark Subspecies []
24 Jan Hornked Lark Subspecies ["Alix d'Entremont" ]
19 Jan Re: Interesting Gull [Alvaro Jaramillo ]
19 Jan Re: Interesting Gull [Steve Hampton ]
19 Jan Interesting Gull [Andrew Miller ]
12 Jan Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull & now Irish Vega Gull ["Mike O'Keeffe" ]
12 Jan Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull & now Irish Vega Gull [Alvaro Jaramillo ]
12 Jan Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull & now Irish Vega Gull ["Lethaby, Nick" ]
12 Jan Irish Glaucous-winged Gull & now Irish Vega Gull ["Mike O'Keeffe" ]
10 Jan Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull ["Mike O'Keeffe" ]
10 Jan Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull ["Mike O'Keeffe" ]
9 Jan Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull [Dick Newell ]
9 Jan Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull [Alvaro Jaramillo ]
9 Jan Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull [Alvaro Jaramillo ]
9 Jan Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull [Chris Corben ]
9 Jan Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull [Dick Newell ]
9 Jan Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull ["Mike O'Keeffe" ]
8 Jan Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull []
8 Jan Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull [Alvaro Jaramillo ]
8 Jan Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull [Tony Leukering ]
8 Jan Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull ["Mike O'Keeffe" ]
8 Jan Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull [Amar Attach ]
8 Jan Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull ["Mike O'Keeffe" ]
8 Jan Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole [David Irons ]
7 Jan Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole [Peter Pyle ]
7 Jan Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull ["Lethaby, Nick" ]
7 Jan Irish Glaucous-winged Gull ["Mike O'Keeffe" ]
7 Jan Swfts in Gaiensivlle Florida [Andy Kratter ]
6 Jan Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole [Alvaro Jaramillo ]
7 Jan Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole [David Irons ]
7 Jan Newport Oriole, updated photo gallery [David Irons ]
6 Jan Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull [Steve Hampton ]
6 Jan hummers [Ron Maertz ]
6 Jan Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull ["Lethaby, Nick" ]
6 Jan Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull [David Irons ]
6 Jan Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull [Alvaro Jaramillo ]
6 Jan Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull [Tony Leukering ]
6 Jan Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole [David Irons ]
6 Jan Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole [Alvaro Jaramillo ]
6 Jan Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull [Amar Ayyash ]
6 Jan Irish Glaucous-winged Gull ["Mike O'Keeffe" ]
6 Jan Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole [Peter Pyle ]
6 Jan Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole [Alvaro Jaramillo ]
6 Jan Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole [David Irons ]
6 Jan Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole [Chris Hill ]
6 Jan Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole [julian hough ]
6 Jan Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole [Peter Pyle ]
6 Jan Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole [Tony Leukering ]
6 Jan Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole [Terry Bronson ]
6 Jan Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole [Tim Janzen ]

Subject: No Subject
From: phil barnett <philbarnettox AT YAHOO.COM>
Date: Fri, 5 Feb 2016 09:51:22 +0000
Sorry wrong group.

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: No Subject
From: phil barnett <philbarnettox AT YAHOO.COM>
Date: Fri, 5 Feb 2016 09:50:21 +0000
Hi Lee, what do you think is the best record, Duran Duran - The ReflexDon 
Henley - Boys of Summer 

 

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Greater White-fronted Goose identification
From: phil barnett <philbarnettox AT YAHOO.COM>
Date: Fri, 5 Feb 2016 09:44:25 +0000
There's an interesting article on this in Birdwatch. There's a photo of an 
adult Eurasian  White-fronted Goose which has a yellow eye-ring above the eye 
but not below it, whereas the American races show a complete yellow 
eye-ring. Is this a feature? 


Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Sexing Northern Shrikes in the Field?
From: Jon Ruddy <accipitriformes AT GMAIL.COM>
Date: Thu, 4 Feb 2016 18:29:56 -0500
Hi there,

I have put together a short web article on the field ID of Northern Shrikes
which summarizes two excellent papers on the subject: Zimmerman (1955) and
Brady et al. (2009). I am curious to know if others have approached the
subject of ageing and sexing Northern Shrikes in the field (or through the
review of high quality digital images) and what their thoughts are on both
potential pitfalls and whether or not they feel this pursuit is possible,
both in terms of accuracy and consistency. Here's the link to the web
article: http://eontbird.ca/?p=1735.

Jon

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: "Interesting" juvenile Petrochelidon Swallow in Nebraska
From: Sam Manning <samgmanning1 AT GMAIL.COM>
Date: Thu, 4 Feb 2016 10:43:46 -0600
Besides posting to this group, I also contacted Mary Brown, who Ross
mentioned.  She stated that the swallow was a juvenile Cliff Swallow, most
likely coming from a nest in southern Texas that hatched in the 3rd week of
April and fledged in mid-May.

But knowing that this bird shows at least one suggestive characteristic of
a Cave Swallow, leaving it unidentified would probably be the "safest"
thing to do.

Thanks again
Sam Manning

On Wed, Feb 3, 2016 at 11:56 PM, Sam Manning  wrote:

> Hey all,
>
> On May 26th, 2014, I photographed an unusual juvenile Petrochelidon
> Swallow at Jack Sinn Memorial SWMA in eastern Nebraska.  I initially passed
> it off as an unusual Cliff Swallow, I looked at the pictures again recently
> and the swallow seemed to show characteristics of a juvenile Cave Swallow.
> I have done some research including consulting Tony Leukering's article
> "Cave Swallow: Colorado's Stealthiest Vagrant."  There is not a lot of
> information concerning this age of Cave Swallow, so I am looking for more
> opinions on the bird.  Photographs (both originals and cropped versions)
> can be found at the link below.
>
> https://www.flickr.com/photos/134465260 AT N02/albums/72157664131825761
>
>
> Here is also a list of characteristics that I seem to see in my
> photographs:
> 1) Pale orangish-brown forehead and similarly colored throat. In several
> pictures, there appear to be shadows giving the throat a darker appearance
> or a dark spot.  There are also several photographs in Tony Leukering's
> article with darker throated juvenile Cave Swallows too.
> 2) Pale auriculars that contrast the crown.
> 3) Pale superciliary connecting forehead and auriculars separating the
> crown.
> 4) Rather unmarked chest and restricted dark markings on it.
> 5) Nape contrasts crown and back.
> 6) Very unmarked undertail coverts. The picture that shows the undertail
> coverts is blurry but no dark marks can be seen.
> 7) Squarish tail, which eliminates hybrid with Barn Swallow.
>
> I unfortunately was unable to determine the exact color of the rump,
> though Leukering's article does not address the rump color, but focuses
> mainly on head features, which are the best features to separate the two
> species.  The rump color seemed to similar to the surrounding Cliff
> Swallows, but I made no note of it.
>
>
> Thanks,
> Samuel Manning
> Omaha, Nebraska, USA
>

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: "Interesting" juvenile Petrochelidon Swallow in Nebraska
From: Ross Silcock <silcock AT ROSSSILCOCK.COM>
Date: Thu, 4 Feb 2016 09:58:42 -0600
Hi all,

A note on timing of previously-documented Cave Swallow records in Nebraska. 
Charles Brown and Mary Brown have banded tens of thousands of Cliff Swallows 
in western Nebraska. Among the netted birds have been 4 juveniles, in the 
period 31 May-8 July; photographs of the first record, 31 May 1991, can be 
found in Nebraska Bird Review 60: 36-39.  Brown theorized that juvenile Cave 
Swallows may on occasion move north with spring-migrant Cliff Swallows. The 
date of Sam's photos, May 26, is very early for a Cliff Swallow to have 
fledged in Nebraska; mid-June is the earliest Nebraska date for Cliff 
Swallow fledglings to leave the nest.  The other two Nebraska records are of 
adults in May and August.

I am not making a case for Cave on Sam's bird, merely pointing out a timing 
issue. Perhaps juvenile Cliff Swallows fledged somewhere south of Nebraska 
might move north with Nebraska Cliff Swallows too.

Ross

Ross Silcock

Compiler, Seasonal Reports
Nebraska Bird Review
Tabor, IA


--------------------------------------------------
From: "David Sibley" 
Sent: Thursday, February 04, 2016 8:18 AM
To: 
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] "Interesting" juvenile Petrochelidon Swallow in 
Nebraska

> Hi Sam et al,
>
> Unfortunately, the facial patterns of juvenile Cliff Swallows are so
> variable that it may not be possible to identify a bird like this with
> certainty. I think this is within the normal range for juvenile Cliff
> Swallow, and the slightly darker smudges on the center of the throat might
> point to Cliff rather than Cave. Face patterns in juvenile Cliff Swallows
> range from almost all black to almost all white, with all combinations of
> black, white, rufous, and buff possible in between. Related juveniles 
> share
> very similar patterns, and this is thought to help the parents recognize
> their own offspring.
>
> Presumably, Cave Swallow is also variable at this age, but has not been
> well-studied.  All-in-all a very difficult and underappreciated
> identification challenge.
>
> A couple of references:
> Johnson, Alison E.; Steven Freedberg. 2014. Variable facial plumage in
> juvenile Cliff Swallows: A potential offspring recognition cue?. The Auk
> 131: 121-128. pdf - http://www.bioone.org/doi/pdf/10.1642/AUK-13-127.1
>
> Stoddard, P. K., and M. D. Beecher. 1983. Parental recognition of 
> offspring
> in the Cliff Swallow. Auk 100: 795-799. pdf -
> 
http://faculty.washington.edu/beecher/Stoddard%20&%20Beecher%20-%20P-O%20recognition%20in%20cliff%20swallows%20-%20Auk%201983.pdf 

>
> David Sibley
> Concord MA
> sibleyguides AT gmail.com
> www.sibleyguides.com
>
> On Thu, Feb 4, 2016 at 12:56 AM, Sam Manning  
> wrote:
>
>> Hey all,
>>
>> On May 26th, 2014, I photographed an unusual juvenile Petrochelidon 
>> Swallow
>> at Jack Sinn Memorial SWMA in eastern Nebraska.  I initially passed it 
>> off
>> as an unusual Cliff Swallow, I looked at the pictures again recently and
>> the swallow seemed to show characteristics of a juvenile Cave Swallow.  I
>> have done some research including consulting Tony Leukering's article 
>> "Cave
>> Swallow: Colorado's Stealthiest Vagrant."  There is not a lot of
>> information concerning this age of Cave Swallow, so I am looking for more
>> opinions on the bird.  Photographs (both originals and cropped versions)
>> can be found at the link below.
>>
>> https://www.flickr.com/photos/134465260 AT N02/albums/72157664131825761
>>
>>
>> Here is also a list of characteristics that I seem to see in my
>> photographs:
>> 1) Pale orangish-brown forehead and similarly colored throat. In several
>> pictures, there appear to be shadows giving the throat a darker 
>> appearance
>> or a dark spot.  There are also several photographs in Tony Leukering's
>> article with darker throated juvenile Cave Swallows too.
>> 2) Pale auriculars that contrast the crown.
>> 3) Pale superciliary connecting forehead and auriculars separating the
>> crown.
>> 4) Rather unmarked chest and restricted dark markings on it.
>> 5) Nape contrasts crown and back.
>> 6) Very unmarked undertail coverts. The picture that shows the undertail
>> coverts is blurry but no dark marks can be seen.
>> 7) Squarish tail, which eliminates hybrid with Barn Swallow.
>>
>> I unfortunately was unable to determine the exact color of the rump, 
>> though
>> Leukering's article does not address the rump color, but focuses mainly 
>> on
>> head features, which are the best features to separate the two species.
>> The rump color seemed to similar to the surrounding Cliff Swallows, but I
>> made no note of it.
>>
>>
>> Thanks,
>> Samuel Manning
>> Omaha, Nebraska, USA
>>
>> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
>>
>
> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
> 

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: "Interesting" juvenile Petrochelidon Swallow in Nebraska
From: Tony Leukering <greatgrayowl AT AOL.COM>
Date: Thu, 4 Feb 2016 10:25:41 -0500
Sam et al.:

I agree (at least mostly) with David, particularly that facial pattern in 
juvenile Cliff Swallow is exceedingly variable. However, I would like to 
propose another option (see below), though I believe that, given the 
photographic support, the bird in question may not be identifiable. Leukering 
(2011) suggests that a juvenile Petrochelidon with a contrastingly pale 
superciliary (a feature of the bird in question) is a Cave Swallow, although 
that feature has not been rigorously tested. In fact, none of the 
differentiating features noted in that paper have seen rigorous testing, as far 
as I am aware, and they should all be considered suggestive, at least in 
isolation. 


 
Though with my Colorado mindset I might jump to the "h" word with unseemly 
haste, the possibility of Cliff x Cave Swallow ought to be considered for this 
bird. While that hybrid combo seems not to have been proven, with the frequency 
of Barn x Cliff Swallows and the widespread co-occurrence of Cliff and Cave 
swallows, I would be very surprised if miscegenation has not occurred. I also 
find it hard to imagine what the subject bird of David Arbour's photo essay is 
if it's not a hybrid. 


The Nebraska bird is probably a Cliff Swallow, but I think that there is enough 
uncertainty that I'd be quite happy to enter this individual into eBird as 
"Cliff/Cave Swallow." 


Tony

 


Tony Leukering
Largo, FL
http://cowyebird.blogspot.com/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/tony_leukering/

http://aba.org/photoquiz/

 

 

-----Original Message-----
From: David Sibley 
To: BIRDWG01 
Sent: Thu, Feb 4, 2016 9:22 am
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] "Interesting" juvenile Petrochelidon Swallow in 
Nebraska 


Hi Sam et al,

Unfortunately, the facial patterns of juvenile Cliff Swallows are so
variable that it may not be possible to identify a bird like this with
certainty. I think this is within the normal range for juvenile Cliff
Swallow, and the slightly darker smudges on the center of the throat might
point to Cliff rather than Cave. Face patterns in juvenile Cliff Swallows
range from almost all black to almost all white, with all combinations of
black, white, rufous, and buff possible in between. Related juveniles share
very similar patterns, and this is thought to help the parents recognize
their own offspring.

Presumably, Cave Swallow is also variable at this age, but has not been
well-studied.  All-in-all a very difficult and underappreciated
identification challenge.

A couple of references:
Johnson, Alison E.; Steven Freedberg. 2014. Variable facial plumage in
juvenile Cliff Swallows: A potential offspring recognition cue?. The Auk
131: 121-128. pdf - http://www.bioone.org/doi/pdf/10.1642/AUK-13-127.1

Stoddard, P. K., and M. D. Beecher. 1983. Parental recognition of offspring
in the Cliff Swallow. Auk 100: 795-799. pdf -

http://faculty.washington.edu/beecher/Stoddard%20&%20Beecher%20-%20P-O%20recognition%20in%20cliff%20swallows%20-%20Auk%201983.pdf 


David Sibley
Concord MA
sibleyguides AT gmail.com
www.sibleyguides.com

On Thu, Feb 4, 2016 at 12:56 AM, Sam Manning  wrote:

> Hey all,
>
> On May 26th, 2014, I photographed an unusual juvenile Petrochelidon Swallow
> at Jack Sinn Memorial SWMA in eastern Nebraska.  I initially passed it off
> as an unusual Cliff Swallow, I looked at the pictures again recently and
> the swallow seemed to show characteristics of a juvenile Cave Swallow.  I
> have done some research including consulting Tony Leukering's article "Cave
> Swallow: Colorado's Stealthiest Vagrant."  There is not a lot of
> information concerning this age of Cave Swallow, so I am looking for more
> opinions on the bird.  Photographs (both originals and cropped versions)
> can be found at the link below.
>
> https://www.flickr.com/photos/134465260 AT N02/albums/72157664131825761
>
>
> Here is also a list of characteristics that I seem to see in my
> photographs:
> 1) Pale orangish-brown forehead and similarly colored throat. In several
> pictures, there appear to be shadows giving the throat a darker appearance
> or a dark spot.  There are also several photographs in Tony Leukering's
> article with darker throated juvenile Cave Swallows too.
> 2) Pale auriculars that contrast the crown.
> 3) Pale superciliary connecting forehead and auriculars separating the
> crown.
> 4) Rather unmarked chest and restricted dark markings on it.
> 5) Nape contrasts crown and back.
> 6) Very unmarked undertail coverts. The picture that shows the undertail
> coverts is blurry but no dark marks can be seen.
> 7) Squarish tail, which eliminates hybrid with Barn Swallow.
>
> I unfortunately was unable to determine the exact color of the rump, though
> Leukering's article does not address the rump color, but focuses mainly on
> head features, which are the best features to separate the two species.
> The rump color seemed to similar to the surrounding Cliff Swallows, but I
> made no note of it.
>
>
> Thanks,
> Samuel Manning
> Omaha, Nebraska, USA
>
> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
>

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html


Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: "Interesting" juvenile Petrochelidon Swallow in Nebraska
From: David Sibley <sibleyguides AT GMAIL.COM>
Date: Thu, 4 Feb 2016 09:18:17 -0500
Hi Sam et al,

Unfortunately, the facial patterns of juvenile Cliff Swallows are so
variable that it may not be possible to identify a bird like this with
certainty. I think this is within the normal range for juvenile Cliff
Swallow, and the slightly darker smudges on the center of the throat might
point to Cliff rather than Cave. Face patterns in juvenile Cliff Swallows
range from almost all black to almost all white, with all combinations of
black, white, rufous, and buff possible in between. Related juveniles share
very similar patterns, and this is thought to help the parents recognize
their own offspring.

Presumably, Cave Swallow is also variable at this age, but has not been
well-studied.  All-in-all a very difficult and underappreciated
identification challenge.

A couple of references:
Johnson, Alison E.; Steven Freedberg. 2014. Variable facial plumage in
juvenile Cliff Swallows: A potential offspring recognition cue?. The Auk
131: 121-128. pdf - http://www.bioone.org/doi/pdf/10.1642/AUK-13-127.1

Stoddard, P. K., and M. D. Beecher. 1983. Parental recognition of offspring
in the Cliff Swallow. Auk 100: 795-799. pdf -

http://faculty.washington.edu/beecher/Stoddard%20&%20Beecher%20-%20P-O%20recognition%20in%20cliff%20swallows%20-%20Auk%201983.pdf 


David Sibley
Concord MA
sibleyguides AT gmail.com
www.sibleyguides.com

On Thu, Feb 4, 2016 at 12:56 AM, Sam Manning  wrote:

> Hey all,
>
> On May 26th, 2014, I photographed an unusual juvenile Petrochelidon Swallow
> at Jack Sinn Memorial SWMA in eastern Nebraska.  I initially passed it off
> as an unusual Cliff Swallow, I looked at the pictures again recently and
> the swallow seemed to show characteristics of a juvenile Cave Swallow.  I
> have done some research including consulting Tony Leukering's article "Cave
> Swallow: Colorado's Stealthiest Vagrant."  There is not a lot of
> information concerning this age of Cave Swallow, so I am looking for more
> opinions on the bird.  Photographs (both originals and cropped versions)
> can be found at the link below.
>
> https://www.flickr.com/photos/134465260 AT N02/albums/72157664131825761
>
>
> Here is also a list of characteristics that I seem to see in my
> photographs:
> 1) Pale orangish-brown forehead and similarly colored throat. In several
> pictures, there appear to be shadows giving the throat a darker appearance
> or a dark spot.  There are also several photographs in Tony Leukering's
> article with darker throated juvenile Cave Swallows too.
> 2) Pale auriculars that contrast the crown.
> 3) Pale superciliary connecting forehead and auriculars separating the
> crown.
> 4) Rather unmarked chest and restricted dark markings on it.
> 5) Nape contrasts crown and back.
> 6) Very unmarked undertail coverts. The picture that shows the undertail
> coverts is blurry but no dark marks can be seen.
> 7) Squarish tail, which eliminates hybrid with Barn Swallow.
>
> I unfortunately was unable to determine the exact color of the rump, though
> Leukering's article does not address the rump color, but focuses mainly on
> head features, which are the best features to separate the two species.
> The rump color seemed to similar to the surrounding Cliff Swallows, but I
> made no note of it.
>
>
> Thanks,
> Samuel Manning
> Omaha, Nebraska, USA
>
> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
>

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: "Interesting" juvenile Petrochelidon Swallow in Nebraska
From: Sam Manning <samgmanning1 AT GMAIL.COM>
Date: Wed, 3 Feb 2016 23:56:21 -0600
Hey all,

On May 26th, 2014, I photographed an unusual juvenile Petrochelidon Swallow
at Jack Sinn Memorial SWMA in eastern Nebraska.  I initially passed it off
as an unusual Cliff Swallow, I looked at the pictures again recently and
the swallow seemed to show characteristics of a juvenile Cave Swallow.  I
have done some research including consulting Tony Leukering's article "Cave
Swallow: Colorado's Stealthiest Vagrant."  There is not a lot of
information concerning this age of Cave Swallow, so I am looking for more
opinions on the bird.  Photographs (both originals and cropped versions)
can be found at the link below.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/134465260 AT N02/albums/72157664131825761


Here is also a list of characteristics that I seem to see in my photographs:
1) Pale orangish-brown forehead and similarly colored throat. In several
pictures, there appear to be shadows giving the throat a darker appearance
or a dark spot.  There are also several photographs in Tony Leukering's
article with darker throated juvenile Cave Swallows too.
2) Pale auriculars that contrast the crown.
3) Pale superciliary connecting forehead and auriculars separating the
crown.
4) Rather unmarked chest and restricted dark markings on it.
5) Nape contrasts crown and back.
6) Very unmarked undertail coverts. The picture that shows the undertail
coverts is blurry but no dark marks can be seen.
7) Squarish tail, which eliminates hybrid with Barn Swallow.

I unfortunately was unable to determine the exact color of the rump, though
Leukering's article does not address the rump color, but focuses mainly on
head features, which are the best features to separate the two species.
The rump color seemed to similar to the surrounding Cliff Swallows, but I
made no note of it.


Thanks,
Samuel Manning
Omaha, Nebraska, USA

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Burrowing Owl subspecies ID
From: Phil Davis <pdavis AT IX.NETCOM.COM>
Date: Wed, 3 Feb 2016 13:44:56 -0500
Nick, Terry, Tony, et al.

Maryland had a well-photographed Burrowing Owl in our western 
panhandle on 19-20 May 1983.

Eastern Records. The review file (prepared in 1983) contains notes on 
some other eastern records:

MA - 15 May 1875, Newburyport, MA. Collected. Specimen in the museum 
of Boston Society of Natural History.

NH - 20 Feb 1922, Dover, NH. Found dead in a barn.

NY - 08 Aug 1875, New York City. Alive - possible escape?
NY - 27 Oct 1950, Long Island. Collected - in private collection.

VA - 22 Oct 1918, Cape Henry, VA. Aboard ship offshore. Hypothetical 
record since disposition of specimen unknown.

(Also noted was the NY case of Arthur Allen's pet of one year that 
escaped. Date unknown.)


Subspecies Analysis. Copies of photos of the MD bird were sent to Ken 
Parkes, who prepared a detailed analysis indicating that the MD bird 
was almost certainly a female of the western, hypugaea, subspecies. 
If anyone is interested in Parkes' analysis, let me know and I can post it.

Hope this helps ...

Phil

===================================================
Phil Davis, Secretary
MD/DC Records Committee
2549 Vale Court
Davidsonville, Maryland  21035     USA
301-261-0184
mailto:PDavis AT ix.netcom.com

MD/DCRC Web site:  http://www.MDBirds.org/mddcrc/rcindex.html
=================================================== 

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Burrowing Owl subspecies ID
From: David Sibley <sibleyguides AT GMAIL.COM>
Date: Wed, 3 Feb 2016 13:37:03 -0500
Having been on the scene for the previous CT record of Burrowing Owl (and
involved in the extensive research that led to identifying it as the
Florida subspecies), I have paid a lot of attention to Burrowing Owls over
the years, and I think it's safe to identify this new Connecticut record as
the western subspecies hypugaea. Two key features are the broken
breastband, with a white central stripe extending from the belly to the
throat; and the clean white visible on the underside of the bend of the
wing in photo 1 R. Florida birds have an essentially unbroken breastband of
dark brown mottling, and (as Tony pointed out) dark spots on the underwing
coverts, including some on the small feathers that are visible in this
photo.

Other features are either too unreliable or too subjective to be useful in
these photos. Overall color and extent of markings on belly averages darker
in Florida, but is extremely variable: darker and more heavily marked in
females, and subject to extreme fading in both subspecies. Western birds
average more feathering on the legs, but this is variable and almost
impossible to see reliably in the field. Florida birds tend to have darker
cheeks, but this is subtle and subject to fading.

Interestingly, while the few northward records of floridana are from fall
and winter, many of the eastern records of hypugaea are in spring and
summer, so this record fits that pattern.

David Sibley
Concord, MA

Best,
David
sibleyguides AT gmail.com
www.sibleyguides.com

On Wed, Feb 3, 2016 at 9:56 AM, Nick Bonomo  wrote:

> Hi all,
>
> Back in May of last year a Burrowing Owl was photographed in
> Connecticut. Could someone with experience identifying these birds to
> subspecies weigh in on this individual? I'm having trouble assessing
> this worn bird. Thanks in advance.
>
> If not, but you know someone who may be able to help, please advise.
>
> Four photos posted at link below. Photos by Rollin Tebbetts
>
> https://flic.kr/p/CCy2iC
>
>
> Thanks,
> Nick
>
>
> Nick Bonomo
> Wallingford, CT, USA
> www.shorebirder.com
>
> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
>

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Burrowing Owl subspecies ID
From: Wayne Hoffman <whoffman AT PEAK.ORG>
Date: Wed, 3 Feb 2016 09:34:05 -0800
Hi - 

I agree with your assessment.

It is my understanding that in the West Indies there are multiple "resident" 
subspecies, including more than one in Cuba, some described quite recently. 
During my time in Florida, (1977-1998) I was unaware of anyone looking for 
vagrants at the subspecies level at least within the range of floridanus. 


The recent (since the late 1970s) influx of Greater Antillean Short-eared Owls 
(classified as Asio flammeus domingensis but should be recognized as a separate 
species) into the Florida Keys is another example of northward straying of a 
southern "resident." 


Wayne

-----Original Message-----
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification 
[mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of Tony Leukering 

Sent: Wednesday, February 03, 2016 9:04 AM
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Burrowing Owl subspecies ID

 Terry et al.:

While I believe that a Burrowing Owl in Connecticut is probably referable to 
Western hypugaea, assuming so on the strength of the specimen record is 
tantamount to circular reasoning. That is because most birders in the East 
couldn't care less to which subspecies an individual vagrant in their neck of 
the woods, er, open country is referable and most records of the species from 
east of the longitude of the Mississippi River are not based on collected 
specimens, but on sight records by those very same birders. 


While floridanus is, indeed, generally resident, there are a 
not-inconsequential number of records of the taxon outside of the known 
breeding/resident range, including the aforementioned North Carolina record and 
others from Alabama and Cuba. (There may be others, but I lack access to most 
such data noted in publications subsequent to AOU 1957.) 


The eBird distribution map


http://ebird.org/ebird/map/burowl?neg=true&env.minX=&env.minY=&env.maxX=&env.maxY=&zh=false&gp=false&ev=Z&mr=1-12&bmo=1&emo=12&yr=all&byr=1900&eyr=2016 


shows a barely-broken string of records up the East Coast to Maine. Granted, 
the population size of hypugaea is orders of magnitude larger than that of 
floridanus. Also granted, hypugaea is highly migratory. And granted, the combo 
of these factors make hypugaea far-and-away more likely as a vagrant in the 
East away from Florida than is floridanus. However, note the eBird distribution 
maps for other "resident" bird species of the southeast: 


Red-cockaded Woodpecker: 
http://ebird.org/ebird/map/recwoo?neg=true&env.minX=-90.67457669783079&env.minY=28.88450146662785&env.maxX=-60.65992826033079&env.maxY=38.42897404907119&zh=true&gp=true&ev=Z&mr=1-12&bmo=1&emo=12&yr=all&byr=1900&eyr=2016 


Brown-headed Nuthatch: 
http://ebird.org/ebird/map/bnhnut?neg=true&env.minX=-96.49733060408079&env.minY=34.16308622545125&env.maxX=-66.48268216658079&env.maxY=43.118142772768145&zh=true&gp=true&ev=Z&mr=1-12&bmo=1&emo=12&yr=all&byr=1900&eyr=2016 



and of other "resident" species:

Short-tailed Hawk: 
http://ebird.org/ebird/map/shthaw?neg=true&env.minX=-88.51027005720579&env.minY=38.772411179198144&env.maxX=-73.50294583845579&env.maxY=43.11012282229884&zh=true&gp=true&ev=Z&mr=1-12&bmo=1&emo=12&yr=all&byr=1900&eyr=2016 


Xantus's 
Hummingbird:http://ebird.org/ebird/map/xanhum?neg=true&env.minX=-156.1668263247468&env.minY=17.021661114313144&env.maxX=-36.10823257474681&env.maxY=53.308928829494796&zh=true&gp=true&ev=Z&mr=1-12&bmo=1&emo=12&yr=all&byr=1900&eyr=2016 


Pyrrhuloxia: 
http://ebird.org/ebird/map/pyrrhu?neg=true&env.minX=-156.1668263247468&env.minY=17.021661114313144&env.maxX=-36.10823257474681&env.maxY=53.308928829494796&zh=true&gp=true&ev=Z&mr=1-12&bmo=1&emo=12&yr=all&byr=1900&eyr=2016 



While I strongly disagree with the phrase's use at supporting an otherwise 
poorly-supported report of some vagrant somewhere, "birds do have wings," and 
they use them. 


While I believe that the pictures of the Connecticut bird support an ID as of 
the "expected" subspecies, without those pictures, while I would have believed 
the report of the bird to species, I would not have been willing to accept a 
subspecies ID. Which brings up my beef with even many "high-end" birders 
willing to relegate a bird to the expected subspecies, but don't do the same 
for the species. There is no real dividing line between those categories, so 
they should not be treated differently, except that correct assignment to 
subspecies usually requires a lot more care. 


Respectfully,

Tony

 


Tony Leukering
Largo, FL
http://cowyebird.blogspot.com/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/tony_leukering/

http://aba.org/photoquiz/

 

 

-----Original Message-----
From: Terry Bronson 
To: BIRDWG01 
Sent: Wed, Feb 3, 2016 11:22 am
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Burrowing Owl subspecies ID

Nick,

As an Easterner, I also have very limited experience with this species.
However, Birds of North America Online recognizes only 2 subspecies north of 
Mexico and the Caribbean, and the Florida subspecies is non-migratory, with the 
furthest north stray only as far north as North Carolina. 

Therefore, any bird in the Northeast should be a stray of the western plains 
subspecies, Athene cunicularia hypugaea. 


Terry Bronson
Morgantown, WV



On Wed, Feb 3, 2016 at 9:56 AM, Nick Bonomo  wrote:

> Hi all,
>
> Back in May of last year a Burrowing Owl was photographed in 
> Connecticut. Could someone with experience identifying these birds to 
> subspecies weigh in on this individual? I'm having trouble assessing 
> this worn bird. Thanks in advance.
>
> If not, but you know someone who may be able to help, please advise.
>
> Four photos posted at link below. Photos by Rollin Tebbetts
>
> https://flic.kr/p/CCy2iC
>
>
> Thanks,
> Nick
>
>
> Nick Bonomo
> Wallingford, CT, USA
> www.shorebirder.com
>
> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
>



--
Terry Bronson
Morgantown, WV

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html


Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Burrowing Owl subspecies ID
From: Rex Rowan <rexrowan AT GMAIL.COM>
Date: Wed, 3 Feb 2016 12:22:19 -0500
Actually, at least one Florida Burrowing Owl strayed as far north as Nova
Scotia. See pp. 44-48 of this issue of *Nova Scotia Birds*, which includes
an illustrated discussion of subspecific identification:


http://www.nsbirdsociety.ca/Publications/Newsletters/Vol%2055,%20number%201%20Autumn%202012.pdf 


Rex Rowan
Gainesvillle, Florida

On Wed, Feb 3, 2016 at 11:20 AM, Terry Bronson  wrote:

> Nick,
>
> As an Easterner, I also have very limited experience with this species.
> However, Birds of North America Online recognizes only 2 subspecies north
> of Mexico and the Caribbean, and the Florida subspecies is non-migratory,
> with the furthest north stray only as far north as North Carolina.
> Therefore, any bird in the Northeast should be a stray of the western
> plains subspecies, Athene cunicularia hypugaea.
>
> Terry Bronson
> Morgantown, WV
>
>
>
> On Wed, Feb 3, 2016 at 9:56 AM, Nick Bonomo  wrote:
>
> > Hi all,
> >
> > Back in May of last year a Burrowing Owl was photographed in
> > Connecticut. Could someone with experience identifying these birds to
> > subspecies weigh in on this individual? I'm having trouble assessing
> > this worn bird. Thanks in advance.
> >
> > If not, but you know someone who may be able to help, please advise.
> >
> > Four photos posted at link below. Photos by Rollin Tebbetts
> >
> > https://flic.kr/p/CCy2iC
> >
> >
> > Thanks,
> > Nick
> >
> >
> > Nick Bonomo
> > Wallingford, CT, USA
> > www.shorebirder.com
> >
> > Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
> >
>
>
>
> --
> Terry Bronson
> Morgantown, WV
>
> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
>

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Burrowing Owl subspecies ID
From: Tony Leukering <greatgrayowl AT AOL.COM>
Date: Wed, 3 Feb 2016 12:04:02 -0500
 Terry et al.:

While I believe that a Burrowing Owl in Connecticut is probably referable to 
Western hypugaea, assuming so on the strength of the specimen record is 
tantamount to circular reasoning. That is because most birders in the East 
couldn't care less to which subspecies an individual vagrant in their neck of 
the woods, er, open country is referable and most records of the species from 
east of the longitude of the Mississippi River are not based on collected 
specimens, but on sight records by those very same birders. 


While floridanus is, indeed, generally resident, there are a 
not-inconsequential number of records of the taxon outside of the known 
breeding/resident range, including the aforementioned North Carolina record and 
others from Alabama and Cuba. (There may be others, but I lack access to most 
such data noted in publications subsequent to AOU 1957.) 


The eBird distribution map


http://ebird.org/ebird/map/burowl?neg=true&env.minX=&env.minY=&env.maxX=&env.maxY=&zh=false&gp=false&ev=Z&mr=1-12&bmo=1&emo=12&yr=all&byr=1900&eyr=2016 


shows a barely-broken string of records up the East Coast to Maine. Granted, 
the population size of hypugaea is orders of magnitude larger than that of 
floridanus. Also granted, hypugaea is highly migratory. And granted, the combo 
of these factors make hypugaea far-and-away more likely as a vagrant in the 
East away from Florida than is floridanus. However, note the eBird distribution 
maps for other "resident" bird species of the southeast: 


Red-cockaded Woodpecker: 
http://ebird.org/ebird/map/recwoo?neg=true&env.minX=-90.67457669783079&env.minY=28.88450146662785&env.maxX=-60.65992826033079&env.maxY=38.42897404907119&zh=true&gp=true&ev=Z&mr=1-12&bmo=1&emo=12&yr=all&byr=1900&eyr=2016 


Brown-headed Nuthatch: 
http://ebird.org/ebird/map/bnhnut?neg=true&env.minX=-96.49733060408079&env.minY=34.16308622545125&env.maxX=-66.48268216658079&env.maxY=43.118142772768145&zh=true&gp=true&ev=Z&mr=1-12&bmo=1&emo=12&yr=all&byr=1900&eyr=2016 



and of other "resident" species:

Short-tailed Hawk: 
http://ebird.org/ebird/map/shthaw?neg=true&env.minX=-88.51027005720579&env.minY=38.772411179198144&env.maxX=-73.50294583845579&env.maxY=43.11012282229884&zh=true&gp=true&ev=Z&mr=1-12&bmo=1&emo=12&yr=all&byr=1900&eyr=2016 


Xantus's 
Hummingbird:http://ebird.org/ebird/map/xanhum?neg=true&env.minX=-156.1668263247468&env.minY=17.021661114313144&env.maxX=-36.10823257474681&env.maxY=53.308928829494796&zh=true&gp=true&ev=Z&mr=1-12&bmo=1&emo=12&yr=all&byr=1900&eyr=2016 


Pyrrhuloxia: 
http://ebird.org/ebird/map/pyrrhu?neg=true&env.minX=-156.1668263247468&env.minY=17.021661114313144&env.maxX=-36.10823257474681&env.maxY=53.308928829494796&zh=true&gp=true&ev=Z&mr=1-12&bmo=1&emo=12&yr=all&byr=1900&eyr=2016 



While I strongly disagree with the phrase's use at supporting an otherwise 
poorly-supported report of some vagrant somewhere, "birds do have wings," and 
they use them. 


While I believe that the pictures of the Connecticut bird support an ID as of 
the "expected" subspecies, without those pictures, while I would have believed 
the report of the bird to species, I would not have been willing to accept a 
subspecies ID. Which brings up my beef with even many "high-end" birders 
willing to relegate a bird to the expected subspecies, but don't do the same 
for the species. There is no real dividing line between those categories, so 
they should not be treated differently, except that correct assignment to 
subspecies usually requires a lot more care. 


Respectfully,

Tony

 


Tony Leukering
Largo, FL
http://cowyebird.blogspot.com/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/tony_leukering/

http://aba.org/photoquiz/

 

 

-----Original Message-----
From: Terry Bronson 
To: BIRDWG01 
Sent: Wed, Feb 3, 2016 11:22 am
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Burrowing Owl subspecies ID

Nick,

As an Easterner, I also have very limited experience with this species.
However, Birds of North America Online recognizes only 2 subspecies north
of Mexico and the Caribbean, and the Florida subspecies is non-migratory,
with the furthest north stray only as far north as North Carolina.
Therefore, any bird in the Northeast should be a stray of the western
plains subspecies, Athene cunicularia hypugaea.

Terry Bronson
Morgantown, WV



On Wed, Feb 3, 2016 at 9:56 AM, Nick Bonomo  wrote:

> Hi all,
>
> Back in May of last year a Burrowing Owl was photographed in
> Connecticut. Could someone with experience identifying these birds to
> subspecies weigh in on this individual? I'm having trouble assessing
> this worn bird. Thanks in advance.
>
> If not, but you know someone who may be able to help, please advise.
>
> Four photos posted at link below. Photos by Rollin Tebbetts
>
> https://flic.kr/p/CCy2iC
>
>
> Thanks,
> Nick
>
>
> Nick Bonomo
> Wallingford, CT, USA
> www.shorebirder.com
>
> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
>



-- 
Terry Bronson
Morgantown, WV

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html


Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Burrowing Owl subspecies ID
From: Terry Bronson <bronsonwv AT GMAIL.COM>
Date: Wed, 3 Feb 2016 11:20:54 -0500
Nick,

As an Easterner, I also have very limited experience with this species.
However, Birds of North America Online recognizes only 2 subspecies north
of Mexico and the Caribbean, and the Florida subspecies is non-migratory,
with the furthest north stray only as far north as North Carolina.
Therefore, any bird in the Northeast should be a stray of the western
plains subspecies, Athene cunicularia hypugaea.

Terry Bronson
Morgantown, WV



On Wed, Feb 3, 2016 at 9:56 AM, Nick Bonomo  wrote:

> Hi all,
>
> Back in May of last year a Burrowing Owl was photographed in
> Connecticut. Could someone with experience identifying these birds to
> subspecies weigh in on this individual? I'm having trouble assessing
> this worn bird. Thanks in advance.
>
> If not, but you know someone who may be able to help, please advise.
>
> Four photos posted at link below. Photos by Rollin Tebbetts
>
> https://flic.kr/p/CCy2iC
>
>
> Thanks,
> Nick
>
>
> Nick Bonomo
> Wallingford, CT, USA
> www.shorebirder.com
>
> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
>



-- 
Terry Bronson
Morgantown, WV

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Burrowing Owl subspecies ID
From: Tony Leukering <greatgrayowl AT AOL.COM>
Date: Wed, 3 Feb 2016 10:42:47 -0500
Nick:

A picture of the underside of the open wing would have been very useful for 
subsp ID (unspotted in Western, spotted in Florida). The only feature that I 
can see that might lead to such an ID is the feathering on the "outer portion 
of the tarsus:" 


hypugaea -- ">1/2 the distance to the feet"

floridanus -- "<1/2 the distance to the feet" (all Pyle 1997).

Tony

Lit Cited
Pyle, P. 1997. Identification Guide to North American Birds, part I. Slate 
Creek Press, Bolinas, CA. 



 

 


Tony Leukering
Largo, FL
http://cowyebird.blogspot.com/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/tony_leukering/

http://aba.org/photoquiz/

 

 

-----Original Message-----
From: Nick Bonomo 
To: BIRDWG01 
Sent: Wed, Feb 3, 2016 9:59 am
Subject: [BIRDWG01] Burrowing Owl subspecies ID

Hi all,

Back in May of last year a Burrowing Owl was photographed in
Connecticut. Could someone with experience identifying these birds to
subspecies weigh in on this individual? I'm having trouble assessing
this worn bird. Thanks in advance.

If not, but you know someone who may be able to help, please advise.

Four photos posted at link below. Photos by Rollin Tebbetts

https://flic.kr/p/CCy2iC


Thanks,
Nick


Nick Bonomo
Wallingford, CT, USA
www.shorebirder.com

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html


Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Burrowing Owl subspecies ID
From: Nick Bonomo <nbonomo AT GMAIL.COM>
Date: Wed, 3 Feb 2016 09:56:07 -0500
Hi all,

Back in May of last year a Burrowing Owl was photographed in
Connecticut. Could someone with experience identifying these birds to
subspecies weigh in on this individual? I'm having trouble assessing
this worn bird. Thanks in advance.

If not, but you know someone who may be able to help, please advise.

Four photos posted at link below. Photos by Rollin Tebbetts

https://flic.kr/p/CCy2iC


Thanks,
Nick


Nick Bonomo
Wallingford, CT, USA
www.shorebirder.com

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Eurasian Wigeon and hybrid question
From: "Lethaby, Nick" <nlethaby AT TI.COM>
Date: Tue, 26 Jan 2016 00:31:00 +0000
Joe,

Are you sure that the coppery color to the eye-patch in an American-like Wigeon 
is indicative of a hybrid? I was looking at some (American) wigeon recently and 
it seems that the color of the eye-patch would vary from green to coppery 
depending on the angle of the light, at least on some birds. 


I did have a definite hybrid last winter in the Goleta Area. Although it was 
superficially American-like, in good light you could see a rufous tone 
underlying the buff speckling on the head, as well some subtle gray tones on 
the body. 


Nick

-----Original Message-----
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification 
[mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of Joseph Morlan 

Sent: Monday, January 25, 2016 3:58 PM
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Eurasian Wigeon and hybrid question

Ken,

I agree completely with Tony on this. In fact I credit the late Laurie Binford 
for pointing this out to me several decades ago. I cannot say how much green is 
not okay, but hybrids typically have other pro-American features; other than 
some green behind the eye. One fairly typical hybrid has a large solid patch 
behind the eye that is copper-colored contrasting to the rest of the head color 
which is otherwise similar to American. 


Another common misconception is that hybrids have the head of a Eurasian and 
the body of an American. Such so-called hybrids are often seen early in the 
season and they go through a body molt which turns them into "pure" 

Eurasian by mid-late January. I think these are usually 1st cycle Eurasian 
males. 


On Mon, 25 Jan 2016 15:36:37 -0500, Tony Leukering 
wrote:

> Ken:
>
>I've run into this problem a number of times and find that a lot of ABA-area 
birders have this belief that Eurowiggles do not have green in the face. I've 
looked at large numbers of pictures of the species from all over its large 
range and even looked at some specimens from Europe, and it's obvious that 
unless American Wigeon genes are widespread in the Old World AND that green 
behind the eye is a dominant trait, a sizable percentage of male Eurasian 
Wigeon have at least some green behind the eye. 

>
>However, one just cannot seem to get folks off of their long-held beliefs 
based on incorrect data/assumptions. Some other such include the dogma about 
Parasitic being the default jaeger in inland Lower 48 States (with a caveat 
about VERY large bodies of water) and various scaup ID features. 

>
>Tony
>
> 
>
>
>Tony Leukering
>Largo, FL
>http://cowyebird.blogspot.com/
>
>http://www.flickr.com/photos/tony_leukering/
>
>http://aba.org/photoquiz/
>
> 
>
> 
>
>-----Original Message-----
>From: Ken Schneider 
>To: BIRDWG01 
>Sent: Mon, Jan 25, 2016 3:03 pm
>Subject: [BIRDWG01] Eurasian Wigeon and hybrid question
>
>Hi all,
>
>I'm seeing a lot of local eBird reports with photos of male wigeon 
>identified as American x Eurasian Wigeon hybrids based largely or 
>solely on a patch of dark green feathers on the face behind the eye.  
>My understanding from reading Madge and Burn and doing some internet 
>surfing is that this plumage feature is "OK" for pure Eurasian Wigeon.  
>Is this incorrect?  Is there some limit to how much green feathering 
>there is acceptable for a "pure" bird, assuming the flanks are 
>uniformly gray and there are no other features of hybridization?
>
>Thanks!
>
>Ken Schneider
>San Francisco, CA
>
>Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
>
>
>Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
--
Joseph Morlan, Pacifica, CA

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Eurasian Wigeon and hybrid question
From: whoffman AT PEAK.ORG
Date: Mon, 25 Jan 2016 16:14:51 -0800
Hi - 

I totally agree with Tony - 

Eurasian Wigeons in areas distant from American Wigeon populations can, and not 
too rarely show some green behind or around the eye. Here in Oregon, when 
trying to separate Eurasians from hybrids we look at both the face pattern and 
the flanks. Birds with clear gray flanks should be Eurasians, even if they have 
some green on the face. Winter-spring birds with pinkish feathering in the 
flanks as well as "intermediate" face patterns are most likely hybrids. HOWEVER 
Eurasian Wigeons in eclipse plumage have warm (pinkish) feathering in the 
flanks, and before they complete the molt out of eclipse they can have a mix of 
older pinkish patches and newer gray feathering. Further, dabbling ducks 
wintering in east Asia tend to keep the eclipse plumage later into the fall and 
winter than dabblers in North America, and we can see Eurasians still with some 
eclipse feathers when the American Wigeons are pretty much done with the molt. 


It can be really instructive to study the plumage of drake American Wigeons to 
see just how variable they are. Some of it will be age-related, some 
molt-related, and some will be just genetic variation in the species. Look up 
"Storm Wigeon" for an extreme of this variation. 


Eurasian Wigeon has a larger native range than American Wigeon and historically 
may have had a larger total population, and we should expect similar levels of 
variation in that species. 


As birders looking for rarities, we tend to think of them as needing to look 
just like the illustrations in the field guides we use, and we often do not 
allow them the range of variation we accept in our local common birds. 


Wayne Hoffman 



From: "Tony Leukering"  
To: "BIRDWG01"  
Sent: Monday, January 25, 2016 12:36:37 PM 
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Eurasian Wigeon and hybrid question 

Ken: 

I've run into this problem a number of times and find that a lot of ABA-area 
birders have this belief that Eurowiggles do not have green in the face. I've 
looked at large numbers of pictures of the species from all over its large 
range and even looked at some specimens from Europe, and it's obvious that 
unless American Wigeon genes are widespread in the Old World AND that green 
behind the eye is a dominant trait, a sizable percentage of male Eurasian 
Wigeon have at least some green behind the eye. 


However, one just cannot seem to get folks off of their long-held beliefs based 
on incorrect data/assumptions. Some other such include the dogma about 
Parasitic being the default jaeger in inland Lower 48 States (with a caveat 
about VERY large bodies of water) and various scaup ID features. 


Tony 




Tony Leukering 
Largo, FL 
http://cowyebird.blogspot.com/ 

http://www.flickr.com/photos/tony_leukering/ 

http://aba.org/photoquiz/ 





-----Original Message----- 
From: Ken Schneider  
To: BIRDWG01  
Sent: Mon, Jan 25, 2016 3:03 pm 
Subject: [BIRDWG01] Eurasian Wigeon and hybrid question 

Hi all, 

I'm seeing a lot of local eBird reports with photos of male wigeon 
identified as American x Eurasian Wigeon hybrids based largely or solely on 
a patch of dark green feathers on the face behind the eye. My 
understanding from reading Madge and Burn and doing some internet surfing 
is that this plumage feature is "OK" for pure Eurasian Wigeon. Is this 
incorrect? Is there some limit to how much green feathering there is 
acceptable for a "pure" bird, assuming the flanks are uniformly gray and 
there are no other features of hybridization? 

Thanks! 

Ken Schneider 
San Francisco, CA 

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html 


Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html 

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Eurasian Wigeon and hybrid question
From: Joseph Morlan <jmorlan AT GMAIL.COM>
Date: Mon, 25 Jan 2016 15:57:46 -0800
Ken,

I agree completely with Tony on this.  In fact I credit the late Laurie
Binford for pointing this out to me several decades ago.  I cannot say how
much green is not okay, but hybrids typically have other pro-American
features; other than some green behind the eye.  One fairly typical hybrid
has a large solid patch behind the eye that is copper-colored contrasting
to the rest of the head color which is otherwise similar to American. 

Another common misconception is that hybrids have the head of a Eurasian
and the body of an American.  Such so-called hybrids are often seen early
in the season and they go through a body molt which turns them into "pure"
Eurasian by mid-late January.  I think these are usually 1st cycle Eurasian
males.  

On Mon, 25 Jan 2016 15:36:37 -0500, Tony Leukering 
wrote:

> Ken:
>
>I've run into this problem a number of times and find that a lot of ABA-area 
birders have this belief that Eurowiggles do not have green in the face. I've 
looked at large numbers of pictures of the species from all over its large 
range and even looked at some specimens from Europe, and it's obvious that 
unless American Wigeon genes are widespread in the Old World AND that green 
behind the eye is a dominant trait, a sizable percentage of male Eurasian 
Wigeon have at least some green behind the eye. 

>
>However, one just cannot seem to get folks off of their long-held beliefs 
based on incorrect data/assumptions. Some other such include the dogma about 
Parasitic being the default jaeger in inland Lower 48 States (with a caveat 
about VERY large bodies of water) and various scaup ID features. 

>
>Tony
>
> 
>
>
>Tony Leukering
>Largo, FL
>http://cowyebird.blogspot.com/
>
>http://www.flickr.com/photos/tony_leukering/
>
>http://aba.org/photoquiz/
>
> 
>
> 
>
>-----Original Message-----
>From: Ken Schneider 
>To: BIRDWG01 
>Sent: Mon, Jan 25, 2016 3:03 pm
>Subject: [BIRDWG01] Eurasian Wigeon and hybrid question
>
>Hi all,
>
>I'm seeing a lot of local eBird reports with photos of male wigeon 
>identified as American x Eurasian Wigeon hybrids based largely or solely on 
>a patch of dark green feathers on the face behind the eye.  My 
>understanding from reading Madge and Burn and doing some internet surfing 
>is that this plumage feature is "OK" for pure Eurasian Wigeon.  Is this 
>incorrect?  Is there some limit to how much green feathering there is 
>acceptable for a "pure" bird, assuming the flanks are uniformly gray and 
>there are no other features of hybridization?
>
>Thanks!
>
>Ken Schneider
>San Francisco, CA
>
>Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
>
>
>Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
--
Joseph Morlan, Pacifica, CA

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Eurasian Wigeon and hybrid question
From: Tony Leukering <greatgrayowl AT AOL.COM>
Date: Mon, 25 Jan 2016 15:36:37 -0500
 Ken:

I've run into this problem a number of times and find that a lot of ABA-area 
birders have this belief that Eurowiggles do not have green in the face. I've 
looked at large numbers of pictures of the species from all over its large 
range and even looked at some specimens from Europe, and it's obvious that 
unless American Wigeon genes are widespread in the Old World AND that green 
behind the eye is a dominant trait, a sizable percentage of male Eurasian 
Wigeon have at least some green behind the eye. 


However, one just cannot seem to get folks off of their long-held beliefs based 
on incorrect data/assumptions. Some other such include the dogma about 
Parasitic being the default jaeger in inland Lower 48 States (with a caveat 
about VERY large bodies of water) and various scaup ID features. 


Tony

 


Tony Leukering
Largo, FL
http://cowyebird.blogspot.com/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/tony_leukering/

http://aba.org/photoquiz/

 

 

-----Original Message-----
From: Ken Schneider 
To: BIRDWG01 
Sent: Mon, Jan 25, 2016 3:03 pm
Subject: [BIRDWG01] Eurasian Wigeon and hybrid question

Hi all,

I'm seeing a lot of local eBird reports with photos of male wigeon 
identified as American x Eurasian Wigeon hybrids based largely or solely on 
a patch of dark green feathers on the face behind the eye.  My 
understanding from reading Madge and Burn and doing some internet surfing 
is that this plumage feature is "OK" for pure Eurasian Wigeon.  Is this 
incorrect?  Is there some limit to how much green feathering there is 
acceptable for a "pure" bird, assuming the flanks are uniformly gray and 
there are no other features of hybridization?

Thanks!

Ken Schneider
San Francisco, CA

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html


Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Eurasian Wigeon and hybrid question
From: Ken Schneider <kschnei1 AT HOTMAIL.COM>
Date: Mon, 25 Jan 2016 13:51:30 -0600
Hi all,

I'm seeing a lot of local eBird reports with photos of male wigeon 
identified as American x Eurasian Wigeon hybrids based largely or solely on 
a patch of dark green feathers on the face behind the eye.  My 
understanding from reading Madge and Burn and doing some internet surfing 
is that this plumage feature is "OK" for pure Eurasian Wigeon.  Is this 
incorrect?  Is there some limit to how much green feathering there is 
acceptable for a "pure" bird, assuming the flanks are uniformly gray and 
there are no other features of hybridization?

Thanks!

Ken Schneider
San Francisco, CA

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: hummingbird in Mississippi
From: Jason Hoeksema <hoeksema AT OLEMISS.EDU>
Date: Mon, 25 Jan 2016 08:04:05 -0600
Thanks, everyone, for the feedback on this bird. The consensus is
Ruby-throated Hummingbird, immature male. Apparently the extent of buffy
wash on the underparts is within the normal range of variation for
Ruby-throated, and the apparent rufous in the outer tail feathers is caused
by backlighting through structural pigments, which (according to Sheri
Williamson) is the most common cause of apparent rufous in tail feathers of
hummingbirds that shouldn't have any.
Good birding,
Jason

On Sun, Jan 24, 2016 at 2:44 PM, Jason Hoeksema 
wrote:

> One quick follow-up: A couple of early responses have suggested immature
> male Ruby-throat for this bird. I had considered that possibility, but I
> thought the buffy wash extending down onto the vent and the (apparent?)
> rufous in the outer tail feathers ruled out Archilocus.  The buffy wash on
> the vent is apparent in photos 31 and 33
> 
, 

> and the apparent rufous in the outer tail feathers is visible in photo 108.
> Perhaps I'm wrong about both of those points, but I wanted to mention them
> now for consideration.  Unfortunately, none of the photos show very well
> the relative width of the inner primaries compared to the outer 4, which
> would be useful in confirming Archilocus.
> Thanks again!
> 
 

>
> On Sun, Jan 24, 2016 at 12:48 PM, Jason Hoeksema 
> wrote:
>
>> All:
>> I'd appreciate comments on a hummingbird that is currently visiting
>> feeders at a private residence on the Gulf Coast of Mississippi. Photos,
>> taken yesterday, can be found in this Flickr album:
>> https://www.flickr.com/photos/j_hoeksema/sets/72157663841241286
>>
>> In the field, the bird appeared to me to be relatively short-billed,
>> short-tailed, square-tailed, and pot-bellied, and my initial impression was
>> possible Calliope. However, after studying my photos, I noticed that the
>> wing tips fell well short of the tail tip (although the wings were always
>> drooped when perched, making me a bit uncertain about this), the tail may
>> be a bit more graduated than I thought it was in the field, and R1 may be
>> all green (although I did not obtain a good photo of a dorsal view of the
>> tail), perhaps pointing to Broad-tailed instead.
>>
>> Your input on the likely gender and species of this bird would be much
>> appreciated. A few additional features I noted:
>> * relatively light cinnamon wash on underparts
>> * some rufous visible on outer retrices (at least on R4/R5), but not a lot
>> * a couple of rose-colored gorget feathers in center of throat
>>
>> Thanks in advance!
>>
>> Jason Hoeksema
>> Oxford, MS
>>
>
>
>
> --
> Dr. Jason D. Hoeksema, Associate Professor
> Department of Biology
> University of Mississippi
> phone: 662-915-1275
> lab website 
>



-- 
Dr. Jason D. Hoeksema, Associate Professor
Department of Biology
University of Mississippi
phone: 662-915-1275
lab website 

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: hummingbird in Mississippi
From: Ian McLaren <I.A.McLaren AT DAL.CA>
Date: Mon, 25 Jan 2016 00:18:45 +0000
I have been through the ID mill with two or three similar late hummingbirds in 
Nova Scotia. Sheri Williamson (undoubtedly tops in these & worth contacting) 
totally convinced me that they were young Ruby-throats. The dark 'raccoon' 
mask. bill length, golden-green (not bluish-green) back are all good. Young 
males often have some warm buff on flanks and even on rects. 


Putting the image(s) on the Advanced ID Facebook page might evoke responses, 
including from Sheri W. 


Cheers, 
Ian McLaren


________________________________________
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification 
 on behalf of Jason Hoeksema  

Sent: January 24, 2016 4:44 PM
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] hummingbird in Mississippi

One quick follow-up: A couple of early responses have suggested immature
male Ruby-throat for this bird. I had considered that possibility, but I
thought the buffy wash extending down onto the vent and the (apparent?)
rufous in the outer tail feathers ruled out Archilocus.  The buffy wash on
the vent is apparent in photos 31 and 33

, 

and the apparent rufous in the outer tail feathers is visible in photo 108.
Perhaps I'm wrong about both of those points, but I wanted to mention them
now for consideration.  Unfortunately, none of the photos show very well
the relative width of the inner primaries compared to the outer 4, which
would be useful in confirming Archilocus.
Thanks again!

 


On Sun, Jan 24, 2016 at 12:48 PM, Jason Hoeksema 
wrote:

> All:
> I'd appreciate comments on a hummingbird that is currently visiting
> feeders at a private residence on the Gulf Coast of Mississippi. Photos,
> taken yesterday, can be found in this Flickr album:
> https://www.flickr.com/photos/j_hoeksema/sets/72157663841241286
>
> In the field, the bird appeared to me to be relatively short-billed,
> short-tailed, square-tailed, and pot-bellied, and my initial impression was
> possible Calliope. However, after studying my photos, I noticed that the
> wing tips fell well short of the tail tip (although the wings were always
> drooped when perched, making me a bit uncertain about this), the tail may
> be a bit more graduated than I thought it was in the field, and R1 may be
> all green (although I did not obtain a good photo of a dorsal view of the
> tail), perhaps pointing to Broad-tailed instead.
>
> Your input on the likely gender and species of this bird would be much
> appreciated. A few additional features I noted:
> * relatively light cinnamon wash on underparts
> * some rufous visible on outer retrices (at least on R4/R5), but not a lot
> * a couple of rose-colored gorget feathers in center of throat
>
> Thanks in advance!
>
> Jason Hoeksema
> Oxford, MS
>



--
Dr. Jason D. Hoeksema, Associate Professor
Department of Biology
University of Mississippi
phone: 662-915-1275
lab website 

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: hummingbird in Mississippi
From: Jason Hoeksema <hoeksema AT OLEMISS.EDU>
Date: Sun, 24 Jan 2016 14:44:50 -0600
One quick follow-up: A couple of early responses have suggested immature
male Ruby-throat for this bird. I had considered that possibility, but I
thought the buffy wash extending down onto the vent and the (apparent?)
rufous in the outer tail feathers ruled out Archilocus.  The buffy wash on
the vent is apparent in photos 31 and 33

, 

and the apparent rufous in the outer tail feathers is visible in photo 108.
Perhaps I'm wrong about both of those points, but I wanted to mention them
now for consideration.  Unfortunately, none of the photos show very well
the relative width of the inner primaries compared to the outer 4, which
would be useful in confirming Archilocus.
Thanks again!

 


On Sun, Jan 24, 2016 at 12:48 PM, Jason Hoeksema 
wrote:

> All:
> I'd appreciate comments on a hummingbird that is currently visiting
> feeders at a private residence on the Gulf Coast of Mississippi. Photos,
> taken yesterday, can be found in this Flickr album:
> https://www.flickr.com/photos/j_hoeksema/sets/72157663841241286
>
> In the field, the bird appeared to me to be relatively short-billed,
> short-tailed, square-tailed, and pot-bellied, and my initial impression was
> possible Calliope. However, after studying my photos, I noticed that the
> wing tips fell well short of the tail tip (although the wings were always
> drooped when perched, making me a bit uncertain about this), the tail may
> be a bit more graduated than I thought it was in the field, and R1 may be
> all green (although I did not obtain a good photo of a dorsal view of the
> tail), perhaps pointing to Broad-tailed instead.
>
> Your input on the likely gender and species of this bird would be much
> appreciated. A few additional features I noted:
> * relatively light cinnamon wash on underparts
> * some rufous visible on outer retrices (at least on R4/R5), but not a lot
> * a couple of rose-colored gorget feathers in center of throat
>
> Thanks in advance!
>
> Jason Hoeksema
> Oxford, MS
>



-- 
Dr. Jason D. Hoeksema, Associate Professor
Department of Biology
University of Mississippi
phone: 662-915-1275
lab website 

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: hummingbird in Mississippi
From: Jason Hoeksema <hoeksema AT OLEMISS.EDU>
Date: Sun, 24 Jan 2016 12:48:35 -0600
All:
I'd appreciate comments on a hummingbird that is currently visiting feeders
at a private residence on the Gulf Coast of Mississippi. Photos, taken
yesterday, can be found in this Flickr album:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/j_hoeksema/sets/72157663841241286

In the field, the bird appeared to me to be relatively short-billed,
short-tailed, square-tailed, and pot-bellied, and my initial impression was
possible Calliope. However, after studying my photos, I noticed that the
wing tips fell well short of the tail tip (although the wings were always
drooped when perched, making me a bit uncertain about this), the tail may
be a bit more graduated than I thought it was in the field, and R1 may be
all green (although I did not obtain a good photo of a dorsal view of the
tail), perhaps pointing to Broad-tailed instead.

Your input on the likely gender and species of this bird would be much
appreciated. A few additional features I noted:
* relatively light cinnamon wash on underparts
* some rufous visible on outer retrices (at least on R4/R5), but not a lot
* a couple of rose-colored gorget feathers in center of throat

Thanks in advance!

Jason Hoeksema
Oxford, MS

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Hornked Lark Subspecies
From: jeaniron AT SYMPATICO.CA
Date: Sun, 24 Jan 2016 11:23:49 -0500
Hi Alix,

 

Appearance fits a Prairie Horned Lark, but was it smaller
beside the Northerns? Smaller size would add greater certainty to the ID.
Nominate alpestris and praticola probably don't intergrade or it's extremely
limited. Hoyt's Horned Lark breeds east to southeastern Baffin Island at the
same longtitude as southern Nova Scotia so an alpestris x hoyti intergrade
seems possible, but such an intergrade is expected to be the same size as the
nearby Northerns. I wrote an article for Ontario birders which might provide
additional information. See link.

http://jeaniron.ca/2014/hlark.htm

 

Ron Pittaway

Toronto ON

> Date: Sun, 24 Jan 2016 06:10:18 -0600
> From: alixdentremont AT HOTMAIL.COM
> Subject: [BIRDWG01] Hornked Lark Subspecies
> To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> 
> Alpestris (Northern) is the regular migrant and winter resident in Nova 
> Scotia. We do get praticola (Prairie), but in smaller numbers. We also 
> must be aware of the possibility of hoyti. See the eBird checklist below 
> for photos.
> 
> http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S27065942
> 
> That eBird checklist has three photos. 
> 
> Photo 1: ML23586171
> The one labeled praticola at left appears to have comparitively less 
> rich brown on the back, nape, crown, breast... than what is likely a 
> photo of alpestris at right. The bird at left also shows much less 
> yellow in the face than the bird at right.
> 
> Photo 2: ML23586211
> Possible praticola on the bottom and alpestris on top.
> 
> Photo 3: ML23586221
> Possible praticola at front-right and alpestris at left and back. 
> 
> Do I have the subpecies correct here? Thanks.
> 
> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
 		 	   		  
Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Hornked Lark Subspecies
From: "Alix d'Entremont" <alixdentremont AT HOTMAIL.COM>
Date: Sun, 24 Jan 2016 06:10:18 -0600
Alpestris (Northern) is the regular migrant and winter resident in Nova 
Scotia. We do get praticola (Prairie), but in smaller numbers. We also 
must be aware of the possibility of hoyti. See the eBird checklist below 
for photos.

http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S27065942

That eBird checklist has three photos. 

Photo 1: ML23586171
The one labeled praticola at left appears to have comparitively less 
rich brown on the back, nape, crown, breast... than what is likely a 
photo of alpestris at right. The bird at left also shows much less 
yellow in the face than the bird at right.

Photo 2: ML23586211
Possible praticola on the bottom and alpestris on top.

Photo 3: ML23586221
Possible praticola at front-right and alpestris at left and back. 

Do I have the subpecies correct here? Thanks.

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Interesting Gull
From: Alvaro Jaramillo <chucao AT COASTSIDE.NET>
Date: Tue, 19 Jan 2016 19:09:02 -0800
Hi Andrew
 From a California perspective, that looks like a fairly typical Thayer's Gull. 
A substantial number of them are darker above than what may be considered 
quintessential, but this may be an incorrect assessment of what Thayer's 
actually looks like. The distinct idea of a gull with lots of black above on 
the primaries, and very little below is exactly what your gull shows, and is a 
Thayer's feature. The smallish bill, seemingly dark eyes, and even the warm 
colored hood of streaks, all good for Thayer's. 

Regards
Alvaro 

Alvaro Jaramillo
alvaro AT alvarosadventures.com
www.alvarosadventures.com

-----Original Message-----
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification 
[mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of Andrew Miller 

Sent: Tuesday, January 19, 2016 5:37 PM
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: [BIRDWG01] Interesting Gull

Hi All,

We found this Gull on Christmas day in central Kansas 
https://www.flickr.com/photos/134833219 AT N04/albums/72157661405123533. It 
appears to be a third or fourth cycle, but unfortunately we didn't see it for 
very long. We thought it didn't quite fit anything, but we weren't sure what to 
think. Is it just Herring? Thanks! 


Andrew Miller
Partridge, Ks,
http://renocountybirdmen.blogspot.com/

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Interesting Gull
From: Steve Hampton <stevechampton AT GMAIL.COM>
Date: Tue, 19 Jan 2016 18:48:07 -0800
Based on the amount of white in the primary pattern, the gray (not black)
underside of that pattern, and the heavy head markings, this bird resembles
a typical Gl-W x Herring hybrid.



On Tue, Jan 19, 2016 at 5:36 PM, Andrew Miller <
andrewdavidmiller00 AT gmail.com> wrote:

> Hi All,
>
> We found this Gull on Christmas day in central Kansas
> https://www.flickr.com/photos/134833219 AT N04/albums/72157661405123533.  It
> appears to be a third or fourth cycle, but unfortunately we didn't see it
> for very long.  We thought it didn't quite fit anything, but we weren't
> sure what to think.  Is it just Herring?  Thanks!
>
> Andrew Miller
> Partridge, Ks,
> http://renocountybirdmen.blogspot.com/
>
> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
>



-- 
Steve Hampton
Davis, CA

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Interesting Gull
From: Andrew Miller <andrewdavidmiller00 AT GMAIL.COM>
Date: Tue, 19 Jan 2016 19:36:58 -0600
Hi All,

We found this Gull on Christmas day in central Kansas
https://www.flickr.com/photos/134833219 AT N04/albums/72157661405123533.  It
appears to be a third or fourth cycle, but unfortunately we didn't see it
for very long.  We thought it didn't quite fit anything, but we weren't
sure what to think.  Is it just Herring?  Thanks!

Andrew Miller
Partridge, Ks,
http://renocountybirdmen.blogspot.com/

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull & now Irish Vega Gull
From: "Mike O'Keeffe" <okeeffeml AT EIRCOM.NET>
Date: Tue, 12 Jan 2016 21:59:18 +0000
Hi,

Interesting activity in the arctic over Christmas. Maybe they both crossed the 
Arctic over the pole! 

http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/files/2016/01/Figure6.png
http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/ 

Regards

Mike

-----Original Message-----
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification 
[mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of Alvaro Jaramillo 

Sent: 12 January 2016 21:43
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull & now Irish Vega Gull

Nick et al. 
 Yep, totally agree. We have various eastern records for Vega in North America, 
while nearly nothing for Glaucous-winged out East. So from these sparse data 
you could make a good argument that GWGU came from Asia to Ireland, while the 
Vega may have come from either direction. 

 Now where do California Lesser Black-backs come from, now there is a question? 

Alvaro 

Alvaro Jaramillo
alvaro AT alvarosadventures.com
www.alvarosadventures.com

-----Original Message-----
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification 
[mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of Lethaby, Nick 

Sent: Tuesday, January 12, 2016 12:43 PM
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull & now Irish Vega Gull

Mike,

I don't think that likelihood of origin is going to be of much help in 
determining the purity of the GWGU. While the good news is that the GWGUs 
breeding in the Aleutians (which is relative near to the entrance to the Arctic 
Ocean compared to other populations) have darker wing-tips, it's pretty easy to 
think that a GWGU x HEGU hybrid that wintered in California could get mixed up 
with the arctic-breeding HEGUs and end up in the Arctic Ocean too. 


Nick

-----Original Message-----
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification 
[mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of Mike O'Keeffe 

Sent: Tuesday, January 12, 2016 12:12 PM
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull & now Irish Vega Gull

Hi,

Don't want to go fully reigniting this thread but thought people might be 
interested to know that Killian Mullarney found what appears to be Ireland (and 
the Western Palearctic's?) first Vega Gull in County Wexford over the weekend. 
This may provide some further evidence for the origin of the GWG. Link below. 



http://www.irishbirding.com/birds/web/Display/sighting/85576/Birding_Opportunity.html 


Regards

Mike O'Keeffe
Ireland

  

-----Original Message-----
From: Mike O'Keeffe [mailto:okeeffeml AT eircom.net]
Sent: 10 January 2016 09:47
To: 'BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU'
Subject: RE: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

Dick,

Human's certainly do like to create artificial boundaries. We draw lines across 
a landscape and define countries. We define species lines which species 
regularly thread upon. We define national lists without knowing the true 
provenance or very often the genetic makeup of our vagrants. It's all flawed 
logic but as Alvaro put it humans need to be willing to accept uncertainty, and 
thats not currently in our makeup. But things could change. Perhaps future 
generations of kids will learn about the world and biology the way it exists 
and not by the rigid rules we were thought to apply to it. Its always easier to 
debate issues and find agreement when the rules are simple. When the rules are 
more flexible its easier to disagree then to agree. Maybe future generations 
will be more enlightened and the debates will move on a bit and there will be a 
new paradigm for dealing with the thorny issues of vagrancy and gene flow. 


Regards

Mike


-----Original Message-----
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification 
[mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of Dick Newell 

Sent: 09 January 2016 11:00
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

Mike,
The European Herring Gull originated from some hybrid swarm in the past 
involving quite a few other 'species'. As a result, it is highly variable in 
appearance, but we are happy to call it one species. Doubtless the 
Glaucous-winged Gull is similar, it is just that some of the hybrid activity 
may be a bit more recent. How many generations back would you need to go to 
find a dark-winged ancestor of your gull, less than which you would not call it 
a Glaucous-winged Gull? 


Barak Obama is called the first black president, but he has a caucasian mother. 
I read somewhere that in the US anybody who is at least 1/32 (5 

generations) of African ancestor is classified as black. Although it is not 
politically incorrect to refer to the race of a person, all people are lumped. 


The situation with the large white-headed gulls is similar, but we do our 
darndest to split them. So do we not need a policy decision. If a bird is 95% 
OK (as with your gull), then have it! 


I realise that this would be the opposite policy than with black people, but 
since when was taxonomy logical? To a large extent it is driven by politics. 

Dick, Cambridge, UK

On 9 January 2016 at 07:42, Mike O'Keeffe  wrote:

> Hi and thanks for continuing the thread,
>
>
>
> My own personal approach to vagrancy would probably be more in line 
> with that of Alvaro and Wayne than with the more conservative, black 
> and white view of things.  There is merits in both stances.  I think 
> that traditionally the Irish Rarities Committee would have taken a 
> pragmatic approach when dealing with questions like Thayer’s Gull and 
> Elegant Tern for instance.  With the lack of strong evidence for 
> hybridization the tendency has been to give the benefit of the doubt.
> Whether rightly or wrongly and whether the current committee will take 
> the approach to the Irish GWG no matter.  At the end of the day we may 
> never know what the right thing to do is in some cases.
>
>
>
> The recent increase in Pacific gulls reaching NW Europe, presumably 
> due to receding Arctic ice obviously raises the question of where in 
> the Pacific these birds are coming from.  Perhaps the species makeup 
> may provide a pointer. We have been getting Slaty-backed and Glaucous-winged 
(types). 

> Interestingly no yet confirmed or suspected Western, Mew or 
> Californian Gulls.
>
>
>
> Regards
>
>
>
> Mike O’Keeffe
>
> Ireland
>
>
>
>
>
> From: whoffman AT peak.org [mailto:whoffman AT peak.org]
> Sent: 09 January 2016 03:10
> To: Mike O'Keeffe
> Cc: BIRDWG01
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
>
>
> Re:  Irish Claucous-winged Gull
>
>
>
> Hi –
>
>
>
> I have been following this thread but have not had time to comment 
> until now.  In an earlier post the question was raised of research on 
> the variation in wingtip color in non-hybrid GW Gulls.
>
>
>
> I studied hybridization between GW and Western Gulls in the mid-1970s.  
> I found extensive hybridization, of course, but a strong tendency in 
> the middle of the zone for birds to be mated to individuals fairly 
> similiar to themselves on a hybrid index.  Thus, most darker 
> intermediates were paired with darker intermediates, paler with paler and so 
on. 

>
>
>
> More importantly, Douglas Bell did a more comprehensive study of the 
> zone of contact and hybridization in the 1990s, published in the late 
> 1990s, early 2000s, using both morphological and molecular variables.
>
>
>
> He also found extensive hybridization, of course.  He concluded (and I
> agree) that the zone of contact and hybridization is quite old, and 
> the frequency of hybridization has probably increased and decreased 
> through time, at least in part tracking abundance.  He considered the 
> current situation to be an upswing related to population increases for 
> both species that have resulted from increases in anthropogenic food sources.
>
>
>
> I take this to mean that while some of the "other" morphological 
> signal found in each population is the result of recent introgression, 
> some is a relict of ancient hybridization, persisting stably in the 
> recipient population.  I think that this ancient signal should not be 
> used to label birds as hybrids, because it presumably was 
> well-integrated into the genome of the recipient species.
>
>
>
> For a more recent, well-studied example of this, consider 
> Golden-winged and Blue-winged Warblers in eastern North America.
> Briefly, Blue-wings are expanding their breeding range north and 
> upslope into that of Golden-wings, which are becoming rare.  When the 
> Blue-wings arrive, the two hybridize, but after relatively few 
> generations, Golden-wings disappear and the birds all look pretty much 
> like Blue-wings. However, molecular analyses do show evidence of mixed 
ancestry in these birds that look very much like "pure" 

> Blue-wings.  I would prefer to call these birds Blue-winged Warblers, 
> acknowledging the possibility of vestiges of a mixed gene pool, 
> because otherwise Blue-winged Warblers would be unidentifiable.
>
>
>
> Back to the gulls: My practice is to call birds that are intermediate 
> in multiple traits hybrids, but I consider birds that "deviate" from 
> species norms in only one trait to be within the within-species 
> variation.  Thus, I would call a bird with normal GW eye, eyering, and 
> bill colors but darker wingtips like the Irish bird a Glaucous-winged 
> Gull.  Further, since we apparently cannot attribute the wingtips of 
> the Japanese birds to a known zone of overlap and hybridization, the 
> likely explanation is that it is a relic of past history, stabilized in the 
Glaucous-winged Gull population. 

> Further, I suspect an east Asian origin for a stray to Ireland is 
> probably as likely as an origin on the Washington Coast.
>
>
>
> Hope this helps
>
>
>
> Wayne Hoffman
>
>
>
>
>
>   _____
>
> From: "Mike O'Keeffe" 
> To: "BIRDWG01" 
> Sent: Friday, January 8, 2016 3:55:16 PM
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
>
>
> Amar,
>
> Thanks for the frank response.  Obviously the grey scale element to 
> this interests me most - it was afterall the core subject of my blog post.
> Surely, its intriguing and of interest to this forum that the primary 
> texts appear to exclude the darker Asian GWGs by narrowing the 
> accepted primary grey scale range to 6-8 and, if what you say is 
> correct, so would many of the N. Am rarities committees?  Does this 
> not represent a potential blind spot.  While the hybrid mess may seem 
> like an insurmountable challenge all puzzles I like to believe can be 
cracked. 

>
> Regards
>
> Mike
>
>
>
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Amar Attach [mailto:amarayyash AT gmail.com]
> Sent: 08 January 2016 22:04
> To: Mike O'Keeffe
> Cc: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
> To put this identification conundrum in perspective, the Irish gull 
> would very likely be rejected as a pure Glaucous-winged by most 
> records committees in North America, if not all. This is where we're 
> at with this species:
> person A suspects a hybrid, while person B sees an acceptable GL-winged.
>
> I imagine this thread will continue in this circle regardless of Kodak 
> gray scale values found in the current gull guides.
>
> Best,
> Amar
>
> Amar Ayyash
> www.anythinglarus.com
>
> > On Jan 8, 2016, at 3:24 PM, Mike O'Keeffe  wrote:
> >
> > Hi,
> >
> >
> >
> > Interestingly the comments that I have received today seem to all 
> > have a slant towards a hybrid origin and all referring to the 
> > Pacific NW hybrid zone.  Having been looking at images from Japan 
> > today however I think its safe to say the jury remains out as far as I am 
concerned. 

> > The 6-8 kodak scale primary pattern cutoff for GWG from the 
> > reference guides (both Howell & Dunn and Olsen & Larsson) clearly 
> > cannot possibly include the population of birds wintering in NE Asia.
> >
> >
> >
> > Here are a couple of examples from Asia which I suspect are in the 
> > Kodak scale 8-9 range.
> >
> > http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Z3QHhMZC1GY/UuA3MSmQTII/AAAAAAAADI0/YVVTzM
> > Op
> > u5k/s1
> > 600/japan+birding+Glaucous-winged+Gull+adult+Hanasaki+harbour+Nemuro
> > +H
> > okkaid
> > o+january+2014+Amundsen+Biotope.jpg
> >
> > http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_TjsY98kGM4s/TN_HhqNWCUI/AAAAAAAAKjA/nlhBxt
> > 1B
> > aCs/s1
> > 600/_MG_1352.JPG
> >
> >
> >
> > And here are a couple that could be even darker, in the Kodak scale
> > 9-12 range perhaps, where I think the Irish bird sits.
> >
> > https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/5269088461/
> >
> > https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/6850236860/
> >
> > http://www.birdquest-tours.com/galleryImages/ai_1271238423232.jpg
> >
> >
> >
> > If based on the bird's smallish bill this bird it is said most 
> > closely resembles an American Pacific Northwest GWG X HG (or Cook 
> > Inlet Gull) here is a good match...
> >
> > http://gull-research.org/smithsonianus/images/howell/th/096.JPG
> >
> > ...but for comparison on the Japanese side of the water we have this
> GWG...
> >
> > http://www.stuartelsom.co.uk/assets/gallery/copyrightphotos/JP09-GWG
> > 01
> > -01-09
> > .JPG
> >
> >
> >
> > The Irish bird, whatever it is may have been cut from the same cloth 
> > as this Danish bird which returned for consecutive winters between
> 2009-2012.
> >
> > http://gulldk.blogspot.ie/2013/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glauces
> > ce
> > ns.htm
> > l
> >
> > http://gulldk.blogspot.dk/2012/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glauces
> > ce
> > ns.htm
> > l
> >
> >
> >
> > Regards
> >
> >
> >
> > Mike O'Keeffe
> >
> > Ireland
> >
> > http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-
> > sc
> > ales-a
> > nd-gulls.html
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: Lethaby, Nick [mailto:nlethaby AT ti.com]
> > Sent: 07 January 2016 22:14
> > To: Mike O'Keeffe; BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> > Subject: RE: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> >
> >
> >
> > The birds with darker wing-tips are probably mostly wintering in the 
> > Aleutians/Bering Sea close to the breeding grounds or migrating down 
> > to the Kuriles and Hokkaido, which isn't super far. GWGU is rare 
> > south of Hokkaido (one sees just a few at Chosi, the famous gull 
> > site N of Tokyo). So I would expect GWGU with darker wing-tips to 
> > molt fairly early as there is no long migration to arrest molt for.
> > My impression is that GWGU also molts early on the US Pacific Coast. 
> > At least one doesn't commonly see juvenile plumage well into 
> > mid-late winter as in
> Thayer's and Herring.
> >
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> >
> > From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification [ 
> >  mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] 
> > On Behalf Of Mike O'Keeffe
> >
> > Sent: Thursday, January 07, 2016 12:57 PM
> >
> > To:   BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> >
> > Subject: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> >
> >
> >
> > Hi,
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Thanks everyone for your responses.  There is no doubt that 
> > experienced observers develop an eye and a memory muscle for judging 
> > subtle patterns and tones of commonly observed birds in the field.
> > But I doubt that this field skill is readily transferable to the 
> > assessment of tones from photos.  It seems to me there are simply 
> > too many variables at play.  Perfectly accurate image exposure is 
> > difficult
> enough to achieve at the best of times.
> >
> > Exposure, lighting, dynamic range, lens focal length and relative 
> > perspective among other parameters can all affect the capture and 
> > appearance of subtle tones.  And those are just the ambient lighting 
> > and exposure elements.  A bird's posture and angle relative to the 
> > camera plays an equally important role.  So I often wonder are we 
> > fooling ourselves when we try and gauge tonal levels so precisely 
> > from photographs.  A comparative analysis like a grey scale tool 
> > provides some basis for a more objective, comparative analysis than 
> > one based
> solely on our visual perception.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > I estimate, based on a comparative analysis using the grey scale 
> > tool, and backed up by what I saw of the Irish bird in the field 
> > that the Irish GWG has a mantle grey scale value close to 6 and a 
> > comparable primary pattern grey scale value of at least 10 and probably 11 
or 12. 

> >
> >
> >
> > http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-
> > sc
> > ales-a
> > nd-gulls.html
> >
> >
> >
> > 
> > https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/684841790776721408
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Obviously the outer primaries are not entirely new and should be at 
> > least a couple of month's old.  Surprisingly P7-P9 seem a tad darker 
> > than the still-growing P10 on the right wing.  P10 is missing 
> > entirely on the left wing.  P10 moult seems a couple of months late 
> > by standard references. Is this lateness ever encountered within it's 
normal N. 

> > American range?  Do Asian winterers moult P10 later than N. American 
> > birds?  Or could it's lateness simply be a reflection of the type of 
> > journey this bird may have undergone?  Is this an example of 
> > arrested moult?  The ragged tips of its tail and secondaries and the 
> > presence of what might be oil staining on its lesser and marginal 
> > coverts, plus a broken P8 feather (right wing) all suggest this bird 
> > has had a rough ride!  And it doesn't seem to be very dominant while 
> > coming to bread at the pier either!  See photos of a nasty attack by 
> > a young HG
> >
> > 
> > https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/683756672913899521
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > In the two main gull reference guides I found the following points 
> > of interest.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Howell & Dunn
> >
> >
> >
> > "Adult has pale grey upperparts (Kodak 5-6) with medium grey 
> > wingtips (6-8; averaging paler on Northern populations)...".
> >
> >
> >
> > Taken at face value, and assuming my analysis of grey scale is 
> > roughly correct, this puts the Irish bird well outside the normal 
> > published range at least for N. American GWG according to Howell and 
> > Dunn.  But it's not clear how definitive this point is and from what 
> > studies specifically it has been derived.  Was the study based solely on N.
> > American birds and from what part of the range?  Could there be an 
> > element of selective or experimental bias trying to second-guess the 
> > hybrid element in these data sets?  One thing is for sure - grey 
> > scale
> > 6-8 represents a very small margin beyond concolorous with the 
> > mantle
> shade - almost imperceptible in the field I should think.
> >
> > The Irish bird is certainly much darker than that.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Olsen & Larsson
> >
> >
> >
> > Plates on page 162 depict birds with primary tips very similar in 
> > tone to the mantle and these are considered good GWGs.  I would have 
> > little difficulty accepting these fall in the grey scale range 1-2 
> > levels above mantle shade.  Plate 179 on page 163 depicts a bird 
> > similar to or perhaps just marginally darker-tipped than the Irish 
> > bird and it is described as "too dark for Glaucous-winged" but again 
> > without a clear explanation as to how that assertion was arrived at.
> > In the body text..."birds with (primary pattern Kodak grey scale
> > level) 8-12 probably of hybrid origin".  It also mentions that for 
> > Glaucous-winged X Western hybrids the "darker wing-tip" is "Kodak grey 
scale 10-12". 

> > This again seems to be in line with the Irish bird based on my 
> > analysis.  But again what studies are these remarks based upon and 
> > how
> was
> the hybrid cut-off line determined.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > In summary
> >
> >
> >
> > The overall consensus among those from N. America who have commented 
> > it seems (though with a few people being cautious) is that despite 
> > the bird's fairly dark primaries the bird is considered within "the 
> > currently accepted range" for GWG in N. America.  With no other 
> > obvious hybrid features it seems to be a good GWG, perhaps an even 
> > better candidate from an Asian population perspective.  Still a 
> > hybrid or back-cross cannot be totally eliminated.  Furthermore my 
> > analysis if correct (primary grey scale 11-12) is at odd with both 
> > the main published reference guides.  This suggests that the 
> > perception of what is just about acceptable as a GWG among gull 
> > experts in N.Am in terms of the Kodak scale at the moment is not in 
> > line with the current standard reference guides, for whom a primary 
> > pattern grey-scale of
> >
> > 6-8 is considered the limit.  It would be really useful to know what 
> > specific studies the 6-8 limit is based upon and was there any 
> > genetic analysis underpinning it.  It would also be useful to know 
> > why birders consider the acceptable range of darkness to be greater 
> > than what is currently published.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Regards
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Mike O'Keeffe
> >
> >
> >
> > Ireland
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > This email has been scanned by BullGuard antivirus protection.
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> >
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Subject: Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull & now Irish Vega Gull
From: Alvaro Jaramillo <chucao AT COASTSIDE.NET>
Date: Tue, 12 Jan 2016 13:43:19 -0800
Nick et al. 
 Yep, totally agree. We have various eastern records for Vega in North America, 
while nearly nothing for Glaucous-winged out East. So from these sparse data 
you could make a good argument that GWGU came from Asia to Ireland, while the 
Vega may have come from either direction. 

 Now where do California Lesser Black-backs come from, now there is a question? 

Alvaro 

Alvaro Jaramillo
alvaro AT alvarosadventures.com
www.alvarosadventures.com

-----Original Message-----
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification 
[mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of Lethaby, Nick 

Sent: Tuesday, January 12, 2016 12:43 PM
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull & now Irish Vega Gull

Mike,

I don't think that likelihood of origin is going to be of much help in 
determining the purity of the GWGU. While the good news is that the GWGUs 
breeding in the Aleutians (which is relative near to the entrance to the Arctic 
Ocean compared to other populations) have darker wing-tips, it's pretty easy to 
think that a GWGU x HEGU hybrid that wintered in California could get mixed up 
with the arctic-breeding HEGUs and end up in the Arctic Ocean too. 


Nick

-----Original Message-----
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification 
[mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of Mike O'Keeffe 

Sent: Tuesday, January 12, 2016 12:12 PM
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull & now Irish Vega Gull

Hi,

Don't want to go fully reigniting this thread but thought people might be 
interested to know that Killian Mullarney found what appears to be Ireland (and 
the Western Palearctic's?) first Vega Gull in County Wexford over the weekend. 
This may provide some further evidence for the origin of the GWG. Link below. 



http://www.irishbirding.com/birds/web/Display/sighting/85576/Birding_Opportunity.html 


Regards

Mike O'Keeffe
Ireland

  

-----Original Message-----
From: Mike O'Keeffe [mailto:okeeffeml AT eircom.net]
Sent: 10 January 2016 09:47
To: 'BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU'
Subject: RE: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

Dick,

Human's certainly do like to create artificial boundaries. We draw lines across 
a landscape and define countries. We define species lines which species 
regularly thread upon. We define national lists without knowing the true 
provenance or very often the genetic makeup of our vagrants. It's all flawed 
logic but as Alvaro put it humans need to be willing to accept uncertainty, and 
thats not currently in our makeup. But things could change. Perhaps future 
generations of kids will learn about the world and biology the way it exists 
and not by the rigid rules we were thought to apply to it. Its always easier to 
debate issues and find agreement when the rules are simple. When the rules are 
more flexible its easier to disagree then to agree. Maybe future generations 
will be more enlightened and the debates will move on a bit and there will be a 
new paradigm for dealing with the thorny issues of vagrancy and gene flow. 


Regards

Mike


-----Original Message-----
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification 
[mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of Dick Newell 

Sent: 09 January 2016 11:00
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

Mike,
The European Herring Gull originated from some hybrid swarm in the past 
involving quite a few other 'species'. As a result, it is highly variable in 
appearance, but we are happy to call it one species. Doubtless the 
Glaucous-winged Gull is similar, it is just that some of the hybrid activity 
may be a bit more recent. How many generations back would you need to go to 
find a dark-winged ancestor of your gull, less than which you would not call it 
a Glaucous-winged Gull? 


Barak Obama is called the first black president, but he has a caucasian mother. 
I read somewhere that in the US anybody who is at least 1/32 (5 

generations) of African ancestor is classified as black. Although it is not 
politically incorrect to refer to the race of a person, all people are lumped. 


The situation with the large white-headed gulls is similar, but we do our 
darndest to split them. So do we not need a policy decision. If a bird is 95% 
OK (as with your gull), then have it! 


I realise that this would be the opposite policy than with black people, but 
since when was taxonomy logical? To a large extent it is driven by politics. 

Dick, Cambridge, UK

On 9 January 2016 at 07:42, Mike O'Keeffe  wrote:

> Hi and thanks for continuing the thread,
>
>
>
> My own personal approach to vagrancy would probably be more in line 
> with that of Alvaro and Wayne than with the more conservative, black 
> and white view of things.  There is merits in both stances.  I think 
> that traditionally the Irish Rarities Committee would have taken a 
> pragmatic approach when dealing with questions like Thayer’s Gull and 
> Elegant Tern for instance.  With the lack of strong evidence for 
> hybridization the tendency has been to give the benefit of the doubt.
> Whether rightly or wrongly and whether the current committee will take 
> the approach to the Irish GWG no matter.  At the end of the day we may 
> never know what the right thing to do is in some cases.
>
>
>
> The recent increase in Pacific gulls reaching NW Europe, presumably 
> due to receding Arctic ice obviously raises the question of where in 
> the Pacific these birds are coming from.  Perhaps the species makeup 
> may provide a pointer. We have been getting Slaty-backed and Glaucous-winged 
(types). 

> Interestingly no yet confirmed or suspected Western, Mew or 
> Californian Gulls.
>
>
>
> Regards
>
>
>
> Mike O’Keeffe
>
> Ireland
>
>
>
>
>
> From: whoffman AT peak.org [mailto:whoffman AT peak.org]
> Sent: 09 January 2016 03:10
> To: Mike O'Keeffe
> Cc: BIRDWG01
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
>
>
> Re:  Irish Claucous-winged Gull
>
>
>
> Hi –
>
>
>
> I have been following this thread but have not had time to comment 
> until now.  In an earlier post the question was raised of research on 
> the variation in wingtip color in non-hybrid GW Gulls.
>
>
>
> I studied hybridization between GW and Western Gulls in the mid-1970s.  
> I found extensive hybridization, of course, but a strong tendency in 
> the middle of the zone for birds to be mated to individuals fairly 
> similiar to themselves on a hybrid index.  Thus, most darker 
> intermediates were paired with darker intermediates, paler with paler and so 
on. 

>
>
>
> More importantly, Douglas Bell did a more comprehensive study of the 
> zone of contact and hybridization in the 1990s, published in the late 
> 1990s, early 2000s, using both morphological and molecular variables.
>
>
>
> He also found extensive hybridization, of course.  He concluded (and I
> agree) that the zone of contact and hybridization is quite old, and 
> the frequency of hybridization has probably increased and decreased 
> through time, at least in part tracking abundance.  He considered the 
> current situation to be an upswing related to population increases for 
> both species that have resulted from increases in anthropogenic food sources.
>
>
>
> I take this to mean that while some of the "other" morphological 
> signal found in each population is the result of recent introgression, 
> some is a relict of ancient hybridization, persisting stably in the 
> recipient population.  I think that this ancient signal should not be 
> used to label birds as hybrids, because it presumably was 
> well-integrated into the genome of the recipient species.
>
>
>
> For a more recent, well-studied example of this, consider 
> Golden-winged and Blue-winged Warblers in eastern North America.
> Briefly, Blue-wings are expanding their breeding range north and 
> upslope into that of Golden-wings, which are becoming rare.  When the 
> Blue-wings arrive, the two hybridize, but after relatively few 
> generations, Golden-wings disappear and the birds all look pretty much 
> like Blue-wings. However, molecular analyses do show evidence of mixed 
ancestry in these birds that look very much like "pure" 

> Blue-wings.  I would prefer to call these birds Blue-winged Warblers, 
> acknowledging the possibility of vestiges of a mixed gene pool, 
> because otherwise Blue-winged Warblers would be unidentifiable.
>
>
>
> Back to the gulls: My practice is to call birds that are intermediate 
> in multiple traits hybrids, but I consider birds that "deviate" from 
> species norms in only one trait to be within the within-species 
> variation.  Thus, I would call a bird with normal GW eye, eyering, and 
> bill colors but darker wingtips like the Irish bird a Glaucous-winged 
> Gull.  Further, since we apparently cannot attribute the wingtips of 
> the Japanese birds to a known zone of overlap and hybridization, the 
> likely explanation is that it is a relic of past history, stabilized in the 
Glaucous-winged Gull population. 

> Further, I suspect an east Asian origin for a stray to Ireland is 
> probably as likely as an origin on the Washington Coast.
>
>
>
> Hope this helps
>
>
>
> Wayne Hoffman
>
>
>
>
>
>   _____
>
> From: "Mike O'Keeffe" 
> To: "BIRDWG01" 
> Sent: Friday, January 8, 2016 3:55:16 PM
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
>
>
> Amar,
>
> Thanks for the frank response.  Obviously the grey scale element to 
> this interests me most - it was afterall the core subject of my blog post.
> Surely, its intriguing and of interest to this forum that the primary 
> texts appear to exclude the darker Asian GWGs by narrowing the 
> accepted primary grey scale range to 6-8 and, if what you say is 
> correct, so would many of the N. Am rarities committees?  Does this 
> not represent a potential blind spot.  While the hybrid mess may seem 
> like an insurmountable challenge all puzzles I like to believe can be 
cracked. 

>
> Regards
>
> Mike
>
>
>
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Amar Attach [mailto:amarayyash AT gmail.com]
> Sent: 08 January 2016 22:04
> To: Mike O'Keeffe
> Cc: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
> To put this identification conundrum in perspective, the Irish gull 
> would very likely be rejected as a pure Glaucous-winged by most 
> records committees in North America, if not all. This is where we're 
> at with this species:
> person A suspects a hybrid, while person B sees an acceptable GL-winged.
>
> I imagine this thread will continue in this circle regardless of Kodak 
> gray scale values found in the current gull guides.
>
> Best,
> Amar
>
> Amar Ayyash
> www.anythinglarus.com
>
> > On Jan 8, 2016, at 3:24 PM, Mike O'Keeffe  wrote:
> >
> > Hi,
> >
> >
> >
> > Interestingly the comments that I have received today seem to all 
> > have a slant towards a hybrid origin and all referring to the 
> > Pacific NW hybrid zone.  Having been looking at images from Japan 
> > today however I think its safe to say the jury remains out as far as I am 
concerned. 

> > The 6-8 kodak scale primary pattern cutoff for GWG from the 
> > reference guides (both Howell & Dunn and Olsen & Larsson) clearly 
> > cannot possibly include the population of birds wintering in NE Asia.
> >
> >
> >
> > Here are a couple of examples from Asia which I suspect are in the 
> > Kodak scale 8-9 range.
> >
> > http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Z3QHhMZC1GY/UuA3MSmQTII/AAAAAAAADI0/YVVTzM
> > Op
> > u5k/s1
> > 600/japan+birding+Glaucous-winged+Gull+adult+Hanasaki+harbour+Nemuro
> > +H
> > okkaid
> > o+january+2014+Amundsen+Biotope.jpg
> >
> > http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_TjsY98kGM4s/TN_HhqNWCUI/AAAAAAAAKjA/nlhBxt
> > 1B
> > aCs/s1
> > 600/_MG_1352.JPG
> >
> >
> >
> > And here are a couple that could be even darker, in the Kodak scale
> > 9-12 range perhaps, where I think the Irish bird sits.
> >
> > https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/5269088461/
> >
> > https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/6850236860/
> >
> > http://www.birdquest-tours.com/galleryImages/ai_1271238423232.jpg
> >
> >
> >
> > If based on the bird's smallish bill this bird it is said most 
> > closely resembles an American Pacific Northwest GWG X HG (or Cook 
> > Inlet Gull) here is a good match...
> >
> > http://gull-research.org/smithsonianus/images/howell/th/096.JPG
> >
> > ...but for comparison on the Japanese side of the water we have this
> GWG...
> >
> > http://www.stuartelsom.co.uk/assets/gallery/copyrightphotos/JP09-GWG
> > 01
> > -01-09
> > .JPG
> >
> >
> >
> > The Irish bird, whatever it is may have been cut from the same cloth 
> > as this Danish bird which returned for consecutive winters between
> 2009-2012.
> >
> > http://gulldk.blogspot.ie/2013/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glauces
> > ce
> > ns.htm
> > l
> >
> > http://gulldk.blogspot.dk/2012/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glauces
> > ce
> > ns.htm
> > l
> >
> >
> >
> > Regards
> >
> >
> >
> > Mike O'Keeffe
> >
> > Ireland
> >
> > http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-
> > sc
> > ales-a
> > nd-gulls.html
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: Lethaby, Nick [mailto:nlethaby AT ti.com]
> > Sent: 07 January 2016 22:14
> > To: Mike O'Keeffe; BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> > Subject: RE: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> >
> >
> >
> > The birds with darker wing-tips are probably mostly wintering in the 
> > Aleutians/Bering Sea close to the breeding grounds or migrating down 
> > to the Kuriles and Hokkaido, which isn't super far. GWGU is rare 
> > south of Hokkaido (one sees just a few at Chosi, the famous gull 
> > site N of Tokyo). So I would expect GWGU with darker wing-tips to 
> > molt fairly early as there is no long migration to arrest molt for.
> > My impression is that GWGU also molts early on the US Pacific Coast. 
> > At least one doesn't commonly see juvenile plumage well into 
> > mid-late winter as in
> Thayer's and Herring.
> >
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> >
> > From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification [ 
> >  mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] 
> > On Behalf Of Mike O'Keeffe
> >
> > Sent: Thursday, January 07, 2016 12:57 PM
> >
> > To:   BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> >
> > Subject: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> >
> >
> >
> > Hi,
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Thanks everyone for your responses.  There is no doubt that 
> > experienced observers develop an eye and a memory muscle for judging 
> > subtle patterns and tones of commonly observed birds in the field.
> > But I doubt that this field skill is readily transferable to the 
> > assessment of tones from photos.  It seems to me there are simply 
> > too many variables at play.  Perfectly accurate image exposure is 
> > difficult
> enough to achieve at the best of times.
> >
> > Exposure, lighting, dynamic range, lens focal length and relative 
> > perspective among other parameters can all affect the capture and 
> > appearance of subtle tones.  And those are just the ambient lighting 
> > and exposure elements.  A bird's posture and angle relative to the 
> > camera plays an equally important role.  So I often wonder are we 
> > fooling ourselves when we try and gauge tonal levels so precisely 
> > from photographs.  A comparative analysis like a grey scale tool 
> > provides some basis for a more objective, comparative analysis than 
> > one based
> solely on our visual perception.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > I estimate, based on a comparative analysis using the grey scale 
> > tool, and backed up by what I saw of the Irish bird in the field 
> > that the Irish GWG has a mantle grey scale value close to 6 and a 
> > comparable primary pattern grey scale value of at least 10 and probably 11 
or 12. 

> >
> >
> >
> > http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-
> > sc
> > ales-a
> > nd-gulls.html
> >
> >
> >
> > 
> > https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/684841790776721408
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Obviously the outer primaries are not entirely new and should be at 
> > least a couple of month's old.  Surprisingly P7-P9 seem a tad darker 
> > than the still-growing P10 on the right wing.  P10 is missing 
> > entirely on the left wing.  P10 moult seems a couple of months late 
> > by standard references. Is this lateness ever encountered within it's 
normal N. 

> > American range?  Do Asian winterers moult P10 later than N. American 
> > birds?  Or could it's lateness simply be a reflection of the type of 
> > journey this bird may have undergone?  Is this an example of 
> > arrested moult?  The ragged tips of its tail and secondaries and the 
> > presence of what might be oil staining on its lesser and marginal 
> > coverts, plus a broken P8 feather (right wing) all suggest this bird 
> > has had a rough ride!  And it doesn't seem to be very dominant while 
> > coming to bread at the pier either!  See photos of a nasty attack by 
> > a young HG
> >
> > 
> > https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/683756672913899521
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > In the two main gull reference guides I found the following points 
> > of interest.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Howell & Dunn
> >
> >
> >
> > "Adult has pale grey upperparts (Kodak 5-6) with medium grey 
> > wingtips (6-8; averaging paler on Northern populations)...".
> >
> >
> >
> > Taken at face value, and assuming my analysis of grey scale is 
> > roughly correct, this puts the Irish bird well outside the normal 
> > published range at least for N. American GWG according to Howell and 
> > Dunn.  But it's not clear how definitive this point is and from what 
> > studies specifically it has been derived.  Was the study based solely on N.
> > American birds and from what part of the range?  Could there be an 
> > element of selective or experimental bias trying to second-guess the 
> > hybrid element in these data sets?  One thing is for sure - grey 
> > scale
> > 6-8 represents a very small margin beyond concolorous with the 
> > mantle
> shade - almost imperceptible in the field I should think.
> >
> > The Irish bird is certainly much darker than that.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Olsen & Larsson
> >
> >
> >
> > Plates on page 162 depict birds with primary tips very similar in 
> > tone to the mantle and these are considered good GWGs.  I would have 
> > little difficulty accepting these fall in the grey scale range 1-2 
> > levels above mantle shade.  Plate 179 on page 163 depicts a bird 
> > similar to or perhaps just marginally darker-tipped than the Irish 
> > bird and it is described as "too dark for Glaucous-winged" but again 
> > without a clear explanation as to how that assertion was arrived at.
> > In the body text..."birds with (primary pattern Kodak grey scale
> > level) 8-12 probably of hybrid origin".  It also mentions that for 
> > Glaucous-winged X Western hybrids the "darker wing-tip" is "Kodak grey 
scale 10-12". 

> > This again seems to be in line with the Irish bird based on my 
> > analysis.  But again what studies are these remarks based upon and 
> > how
> was
> the hybrid cut-off line determined.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > In summary
> >
> >
> >
> > The overall consensus among those from N. America who have commented 
> > it seems (though with a few people being cautious) is that despite 
> > the bird's fairly dark primaries the bird is considered within "the 
> > currently accepted range" for GWG in N. America.  With no other 
> > obvious hybrid features it seems to be a good GWG, perhaps an even 
> > better candidate from an Asian population perspective.  Still a 
> > hybrid or back-cross cannot be totally eliminated.  Furthermore my 
> > analysis if correct (primary grey scale 11-12) is at odd with both 
> > the main published reference guides.  This suggests that the 
> > perception of what is just about acceptable as a GWG among gull 
> > experts in N.Am in terms of the Kodak scale at the moment is not in 
> > line with the current standard reference guides, for whom a primary 
> > pattern grey-scale of
> >
> > 6-8 is considered the limit.  It would be really useful to know what 
> > specific studies the 6-8 limit is based upon and was there any 
> > genetic analysis underpinning it.  It would also be useful to know 
> > why birders consider the acceptable range of darkness to be greater 
> > than what is currently published.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Regards
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Mike O'Keeffe
> >
> >
> >
> > Ireland
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
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Subject: Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull & now Irish Vega Gull
From: "Lethaby, Nick" <nlethaby AT TI.COM>
Date: Tue, 12 Jan 2016 20:42:42 +0000
Mike,

I don't think that likelihood of origin is going to be of much help in 
determining the purity of the GWGU. While the good news is that the GWGUs 
breeding in the Aleutians (which is relative near to the entrance to the Arctic 
Ocean compared to other populations) have darker wing-tips, it's pretty easy to 
think that a GWGU x HEGU hybrid that wintered in California could get mixed up 
with the arctic-breeding HEGUs and end up in the Arctic Ocean too. 


Nick

-----Original Message-----
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification 
[mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of Mike O'Keeffe 

Sent: Tuesday, January 12, 2016 12:12 PM
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull & now Irish Vega Gull

Hi,

Don't want to go fully reigniting this thread but thought people might be 
interested to know that Killian Mullarney found what appears to be Ireland (and 
the Western Palearctic's?) first Vega Gull in County Wexford over the weekend. 
This may provide some further evidence for the origin of the GWG. Link below. 



http://www.irishbirding.com/birds/web/Display/sighting/85576/Birding_Opportunity.html 


Regards

Mike O'Keeffe
Ireland

  

-----Original Message-----
From: Mike O'Keeffe [mailto:okeeffeml AT eircom.net]
Sent: 10 January 2016 09:47
To: 'BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU'
Subject: RE: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

Dick,

Human's certainly do like to create artificial boundaries. We draw lines across 
a landscape and define countries. We define species lines which species 
regularly thread upon. We define national lists without knowing the true 
provenance or very often the genetic makeup of our vagrants. It's all flawed 
logic but as Alvaro put it humans need to be willing to accept uncertainty, and 
thats not currently in our makeup. But things could change. Perhaps future 
generations of kids will learn about the world and biology the way it exists 
and not by the rigid rules we were thought to apply to it. Its always easier to 
debate issues and find agreement when the rules are simple. When the rules are 
more flexible its easier to disagree then to agree. Maybe future generations 
will be more enlightened and the debates will move on a bit and there will be a 
new paradigm for dealing with the thorny issues of vagrancy and gene flow. 


Regards

Mike


-----Original Message-----
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification 
[mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of Dick Newell 

Sent: 09 January 2016 11:00
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

Mike,
The European Herring Gull originated from some hybrid swarm in the past 
involving quite a few other 'species'. As a result, it is highly variable in 
appearance, but we are happy to call it one species. Doubtless the 
Glaucous-winged Gull is similar, it is just that some of the hybrid activity 
may be a bit more recent. How many generations back would you need to go to 
find a dark-winged ancestor of your gull, less than which you would not call it 
a Glaucous-winged Gull? 


Barak Obama is called the first black president, but he has a caucasian mother. 
I read somewhere that in the US anybody who is at least 1/32 (5 

generations) of African ancestor is classified as black. Although it is not 
politically incorrect to refer to the race of a person, all people are lumped. 


The situation with the large white-headed gulls is similar, but we do our 
darndest to split them. So do we not need a policy decision. If a bird is 95% 
OK (as with your gull), then have it! 


I realise that this would be the opposite policy than with black people, but 
since when was taxonomy logical? To a large extent it is driven by politics. 

Dick, Cambridge, UK

On 9 January 2016 at 07:42, Mike O'Keeffe  wrote:

> Hi and thanks for continuing the thread,
>
>
>
> My own personal approach to vagrancy would probably be more in line 
> with that of Alvaro and Wayne than with the more conservative, black 
> and white view of things.  There is merits in both stances.  I think 
> that traditionally the Irish Rarities Committee would have taken a 
> pragmatic approach when dealing with questions like Thayer’s Gull and 
> Elegant Tern for instance.  With the lack of strong evidence for 
> hybridization the tendency has been to give the benefit of the doubt.
> Whether rightly or wrongly and whether the current committee will take 
> the approach to the Irish GWG no matter.  At the end of the day we may 
> never know what the right thing to do is in some cases.
>
>
>
> The recent increase in Pacific gulls reaching NW Europe, presumably 
> due to receding Arctic ice obviously raises the question of where in 
> the Pacific these birds are coming from.  Perhaps the species makeup 
> may provide a pointer. We have been getting Slaty-backed and Glaucous-winged 
(types). 

> Interestingly no yet confirmed or suspected Western, Mew or 
> Californian Gulls.
>
>
>
> Regards
>
>
>
> Mike O’Keeffe
>
> Ireland
>
>
>
>
>
> From: whoffman AT peak.org [mailto:whoffman AT peak.org]
> Sent: 09 January 2016 03:10
> To: Mike O'Keeffe
> Cc: BIRDWG01
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
>
>
> Re:  Irish Claucous-winged Gull
>
>
>
> Hi –
>
>
>
> I have been following this thread but have not had time to comment 
> until now.  In an earlier post the question was raised of research on 
> the variation in wingtip color in non-hybrid GW Gulls.
>
>
>
> I studied hybridization between GW and Western Gulls in the mid-1970s.  
> I found extensive hybridization, of course, but a strong tendency in 
> the middle of the zone for birds to be mated to individuals fairly 
> similiar to themselves on a hybrid index.  Thus, most darker 
> intermediates were paired with darker intermediates, paler with paler and so 
on. 

>
>
>
> More importantly, Douglas Bell did a more comprehensive study of the 
> zone of contact and hybridization in the 1990s, published in the late 
> 1990s, early 2000s, using both morphological and molecular variables.
>
>
>
> He also found extensive hybridization, of course.  He concluded (and I
> agree) that the zone of contact and hybridization is quite old, and 
> the frequency of hybridization has probably increased and decreased 
> through time, at least in part tracking abundance.  He considered the 
> current situation to be an upswing related to population increases for 
> both species that have resulted from increases in anthropogenic food sources.
>
>
>
> I take this to mean that while some of the "other" morphological 
> signal found in each population is the result of recent introgression, 
> some is a relict of ancient hybridization, persisting stably in the 
> recipient population.  I think that this ancient signal should not be 
> used to label birds as hybrids, because it presumably was 
> well-integrated into the genome of the recipient species.
>
>
>
> For a more recent, well-studied example of this, consider 
> Golden-winged and Blue-winged Warblers in eastern North America.
> Briefly, Blue-wings are expanding their breeding range north and 
> upslope into that of Golden-wings, which are becoming rare.  When the 
> Blue-wings arrive, the two hybridize, but after relatively few 
> generations, Golden-wings disappear and the birds all look pretty much 
> like Blue-wings. However, molecular analyses do show evidence of mixed 
ancestry in these birds that look very much like "pure" 

> Blue-wings.  I would prefer to call these birds Blue-winged Warblers, 
> acknowledging the possibility of vestiges of a mixed gene pool, 
> because otherwise Blue-winged Warblers would be unidentifiable.
>
>
>
> Back to the gulls: My practice is to call birds that are intermediate 
> in multiple traits hybrids, but I consider birds that "deviate" from 
> species norms in only one trait to be within the within-species 
> variation.  Thus, I would call a bird with normal GW eye, eyering, and 
> bill colors but darker wingtips like the Irish bird a Glaucous-winged 
> Gull.  Further, since we apparently cannot attribute the wingtips of 
> the Japanese birds to a known zone of overlap and hybridization, the 
> likely explanation is that it is a relic of past history, stabilized in the 
Glaucous-winged Gull population. 

> Further, I suspect an east Asian origin for a stray to Ireland is 
> probably as likely as an origin on the Washington Coast.
>
>
>
> Hope this helps
>
>
>
> Wayne Hoffman
>
>
>
>
>
>   _____
>
> From: "Mike O'Keeffe" 
> To: "BIRDWG01" 
> Sent: Friday, January 8, 2016 3:55:16 PM
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
>
>
> Amar,
>
> Thanks for the frank response.  Obviously the grey scale element to 
> this interests me most - it was afterall the core subject of my blog post.
> Surely, its intriguing and of interest to this forum that the primary 
> texts appear to exclude the darker Asian GWGs by narrowing the 
> accepted primary grey scale range to 6-8 and, if what you say is 
> correct, so would many of the N. Am rarities committees?  Does this 
> not represent a potential blind spot.  While the hybrid mess may seem 
> like an insurmountable challenge all puzzles I like to believe can be 
cracked. 

>
> Regards
>
> Mike
>
>
>
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Amar Attach [mailto:amarayyash AT gmail.com]
> Sent: 08 January 2016 22:04
> To: Mike O'Keeffe
> Cc: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
> To put this identification conundrum in perspective, the Irish gull 
> would very likely be rejected as a pure Glaucous-winged by most 
> records committees in North America, if not all. This is where we're 
> at with this species:
> person A suspects a hybrid, while person B sees an acceptable GL-winged.
>
> I imagine this thread will continue in this circle regardless of Kodak 
> gray scale values found in the current gull guides.
>
> Best,
> Amar
>
> Amar Ayyash
> www.anythinglarus.com
>
> > On Jan 8, 2016, at 3:24 PM, Mike O'Keeffe  wrote:
> >
> > Hi,
> >
> >
> >
> > Interestingly the comments that I have received today seem to all 
> > have a slant towards a hybrid origin and all referring to the 
> > Pacific NW hybrid zone.  Having been looking at images from Japan 
> > today however I think its safe to say the jury remains out as far as I am 
concerned. 

> > The 6-8 kodak scale primary pattern cutoff for GWG from the 
> > reference guides (both Howell & Dunn and Olsen & Larsson) clearly 
> > cannot possibly include the population of birds wintering in NE Asia.
> >
> >
> >
> > Here are a couple of examples from Asia which I suspect are in the 
> > Kodak scale 8-9 range.
> >
> > http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Z3QHhMZC1GY/UuA3MSmQTII/AAAAAAAADI0/YVVTzM
> > Op
> > u5k/s1
> > 600/japan+birding+Glaucous-winged+Gull+adult+Hanasaki+harbour+Nemuro
> > +H
> > okkaid
> > o+january+2014+Amundsen+Biotope.jpg
> >
> > http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_TjsY98kGM4s/TN_HhqNWCUI/AAAAAAAAKjA/nlhBxt
> > 1B
> > aCs/s1
> > 600/_MG_1352.JPG
> >
> >
> >
> > And here are a couple that could be even darker, in the Kodak scale
> > 9-12 range perhaps, where I think the Irish bird sits.
> >
> > https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/5269088461/
> >
> > https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/6850236860/
> >
> > http://www.birdquest-tours.com/galleryImages/ai_1271238423232.jpg
> >
> >
> >
> > If based on the bird's smallish bill this bird it is said most 
> > closely resembles an American Pacific Northwest GWG X HG (or Cook 
> > Inlet Gull) here is a good match...
> >
> > http://gull-research.org/smithsonianus/images/howell/th/096.JPG
> >
> > ...but for comparison on the Japanese side of the water we have this
> GWG...
> >
> > http://www.stuartelsom.co.uk/assets/gallery/copyrightphotos/JP09-GWG
> > 01
> > -01-09
> > .JPG
> >
> >
> >
> > The Irish bird, whatever it is may have been cut from the same cloth 
> > as this Danish bird which returned for consecutive winters between
> 2009-2012.
> >
> > http://gulldk.blogspot.ie/2013/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glauces
> > ce
> > ns.htm
> > l
> >
> > http://gulldk.blogspot.dk/2012/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glauces
> > ce
> > ns.htm
> > l
> >
> >
> >
> > Regards
> >
> >
> >
> > Mike O'Keeffe
> >
> > Ireland
> >
> > http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-
> > sc
> > ales-a
> > nd-gulls.html
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: Lethaby, Nick [mailto:nlethaby AT ti.com]
> > Sent: 07 January 2016 22:14
> > To: Mike O'Keeffe; BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> > Subject: RE: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> >
> >
> >
> > The birds with darker wing-tips are probably mostly wintering in the 
> > Aleutians/Bering Sea close to the breeding grounds or migrating down 
> > to the Kuriles and Hokkaido, which isn't super far. GWGU is rare 
> > south of Hokkaido (one sees just a few at Chosi, the famous gull 
> > site N of Tokyo). So I would expect GWGU with darker wing-tips to 
> > molt fairly early as there is no long migration to arrest molt for. 
> > My impression is that GWGU also molts early on the US Pacific Coast. 
> > At least one doesn't commonly see juvenile plumage well into 
> > mid-late winter as in
> Thayer's and Herring.
> >
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> >
> > From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification [ 
> >  mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] 
> > On Behalf Of Mike O'Keeffe
> >
> > Sent: Thursday, January 07, 2016 12:57 PM
> >
> > To:   BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> >
> > Subject: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> >
> >
> >
> > Hi,
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Thanks everyone for your responses.  There is no doubt that 
> > experienced observers develop an eye and a memory muscle for judging 
> > subtle patterns and tones of commonly observed birds in the field.
> > But I doubt that this field skill is readily transferable to the 
> > assessment of tones from photos.  It seems to me there are simply 
> > too many variables at play.  Perfectly accurate image exposure is 
> > difficult
> enough to achieve at the best of times.
> >
> > Exposure, lighting, dynamic range, lens focal length and relative 
> > perspective among other parameters can all affect the capture and 
> > appearance of subtle tones.  And those are just the ambient lighting 
> > and exposure elements.  A bird's posture and angle relative to the 
> > camera plays an equally important role.  So I often wonder are we 
> > fooling ourselves when we try and gauge tonal levels so precisely 
> > from photographs.  A comparative analysis like a grey scale tool 
> > provides some basis for a more objective, comparative analysis than 
> > one based
> solely on our visual perception.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > I estimate, based on a comparative analysis using the grey scale 
> > tool, and backed up by what I saw of the Irish bird in the field 
> > that the Irish GWG has a mantle grey scale value close to 6 and a 
> > comparable primary pattern grey scale value of at least 10 and probably 11 
or 12. 

> >
> >
> >
> > http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-
> > sc
> > ales-a
> > nd-gulls.html
> >
> >
> >
> > 
> > https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/684841790776721408
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Obviously the outer primaries are not entirely new and should be at 
> > least a couple of month's old.  Surprisingly P7-P9 seem a tad darker 
> > than the still-growing P10 on the right wing.  P10 is missing 
> > entirely on the left wing.  P10 moult seems a couple of months late 
> > by standard references. Is this lateness ever encountered within it's 
normal N. 

> > American range?  Do Asian winterers moult P10 later than N. American 
> > birds?  Or could it's lateness simply be a reflection of the type of 
> > journey this bird may have undergone?  Is this an example of 
> > arrested moult?  The ragged tips of its tail and secondaries and the 
> > presence of what might be oil staining on its lesser and marginal 
> > coverts, plus a broken P8 feather (right wing) all suggest this bird 
> > has had a rough ride!  And it doesn't seem to be very dominant while 
> > coming to bread at the pier either!  See photos of a nasty attack by 
> > a young HG
> >
> > 
> > https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/683756672913899521
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > In the two main gull reference guides I found the following points 
> > of interest.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Howell & Dunn
> >
> >
> >
> > "Adult has pale grey upperparts (Kodak 5-6) with medium grey 
> > wingtips (6-8; averaging paler on Northern populations)...".
> >
> >
> >
> > Taken at face value, and assuming my analysis of grey scale is 
> > roughly correct, this puts the Irish bird well outside the normal 
> > published range at least for N. American GWG according to Howell and 
> > Dunn.  But it's not clear how definitive this point is and from what 
> > studies specifically it has been derived.  Was the study based solely on N.
> > American birds and from what part of the range?  Could there be an 
> > element of selective or experimental bias trying to second-guess the 
> > hybrid element in these data sets?  One thing is for sure - grey 
> > scale
> > 6-8 represents a very small margin beyond concolorous with the 
> > mantle
> shade - almost imperceptible in the field I should think.
> >
> > The Irish bird is certainly much darker than that.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Olsen & Larsson
> >
> >
> >
> > Plates on page 162 depict birds with primary tips very similar in 
> > tone to the mantle and these are considered good GWGs.  I would have 
> > little difficulty accepting these fall in the grey scale range 1-2 
> > levels above mantle shade.  Plate 179 on page 163 depicts a bird 
> > similar to or perhaps just marginally darker-tipped than the Irish 
> > bird and it is described as "too dark for Glaucous-winged" but again 
> > without a clear explanation as to how that assertion was arrived at.  
> > In the body text..."birds with (primary pattern Kodak grey scale 
> > level) 8-12 probably of hybrid origin".  It also mentions that for 
> > Glaucous-winged X Western hybrids the "darker wing-tip" is "Kodak grey 
scale 10-12". 

> > This again seems to be in line with the Irish bird based on my 
> > analysis.  But again what studies are these remarks based upon and 
> > how
> was
> the hybrid cut-off line determined.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > In summary
> >
> >
> >
> > The overall consensus among those from N. America who have commented 
> > it seems (though with a few people being cautious) is that despite 
> > the bird's fairly dark primaries the bird is considered within "the 
> > currently accepted range" for GWG in N. America.  With no other 
> > obvious hybrid features it seems to be a good GWG, perhaps an even 
> > better candidate from an Asian population perspective.  Still a 
> > hybrid or back-cross cannot be totally eliminated.  Furthermore my 
> > analysis if correct (primary grey scale 11-12) is at odd with both 
> > the main published reference guides.  This suggests that the 
> > perception of what is just about acceptable as a GWG among gull 
> > experts in N.Am in terms of the Kodak scale at the moment is not in 
> > line with the current standard reference guides, for whom a primary 
> > pattern grey-scale of
> >
> > 6-8 is considered the limit.  It would be really useful to know what 
> > specific studies the 6-8 limit is based upon and was there any 
> > genetic analysis underpinning it.  It would also be useful to know 
> > why birders consider the acceptable range of darkness to be greater 
> > than what is currently published.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Regards
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Mike O'Keeffe
> >
> >
> >
> > Ireland
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
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> >
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Subject: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull & now Irish Vega Gull
From: "Mike O'Keeffe" <okeeffeml AT EIRCOM.NET>
Date: Tue, 12 Jan 2016 20:12:27 +0000
Hi,

Don't want to go fully reigniting this thread but thought people might be 
interested to know that Killian Mullarney found what appears to be Ireland (and 
the Western Palearctic's?) first Vega Gull in County Wexford over the weekend. 
This may provide some further evidence for the origin of the GWG. Link below. 



http://www.irishbirding.com/birds/web/Display/sighting/85576/Birding_Opportunity.html 


Regards

Mike O'Keeffe
Ireland

  

-----Original Message-----
From: Mike O'Keeffe [mailto:okeeffeml AT eircom.net] 
Sent: 10 January 2016 09:47
To: 'BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU'
Subject: RE: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

Dick,

Human's certainly do like to create artificial boundaries. We draw lines across 
a landscape and define countries. We define species lines which species 
regularly thread upon. We define national lists without knowing the true 
provenance or very often the genetic makeup of our vagrants. It's all flawed 
logic but as Alvaro put it humans need to be willing to accept uncertainty, and 
thats not currently in our makeup. But things could change. Perhaps future 
generations of kids will learn about the world and biology the way it exists 
and not by the rigid rules we were thought to apply to it. Its always easier to 
debate issues and find agreement when the rules are simple. When the rules are 
more flexible its easier to disagree then to agree. Maybe future generations 
will be more enlightened and the debates will move on a bit and there will be a 
new paradigm for dealing with the thorny issues of vagrancy and gene flow. 


Regards

Mike


-----Original Message-----
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification 
[mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of Dick Newell 

Sent: 09 January 2016 11:00
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

Mike,
The European Herring Gull originated from some hybrid swarm in the past 
involving quite a few other 'species'. As a result, it is highly variable in 
appearance, but we are happy to call it one species. Doubtless the 
Glaucous-winged Gull is similar, it is just that some of the hybrid activity 
may be a bit more recent. How many generations back would you need to go to 
find a dark-winged ancestor of your gull, less than which you would not call it 
a Glaucous-winged Gull? 


Barak Obama is called the first black president, but he has a caucasian mother. 
I read somewhere that in the US anybody who is at least 1/32 (5 

generations) of African ancestor is classified as black. Although it is not 
politically incorrect to refer to the race of a person, all people are lumped. 


The situation with the large white-headed gulls is similar, but we do our 
darndest to split them. So do we not need a policy decision. If a bird is 95% 
OK (as with your gull), then have it! 


I realise that this would be the opposite policy than with black people, but 
since when was taxonomy logical? To a large extent it is driven by politics. 

Dick, Cambridge, UK

On 9 January 2016 at 07:42, Mike O'Keeffe  wrote:

> Hi and thanks for continuing the thread,
>
>
>
> My own personal approach to vagrancy would probably be more in line 
> with that of Alvaro and Wayne than with the more conservative, black 
> and white view of things.  There is merits in both stances.  I think 
> that traditionally the Irish Rarities Committee would have taken a 
> pragmatic approach when dealing with questions like Thayer’s Gull and 
> Elegant Tern for instance.  With the lack of strong evidence for 
> hybridization the tendency has been to give the benefit of the doubt.
> Whether rightly or wrongly and whether the current committee will take 
> the approach to the Irish GWG no matter.  At the end of the day we may 
> never know what the right thing to do is in some cases.
>
>
>
> The recent increase in Pacific gulls reaching NW Europe, presumably 
> due to receding Arctic ice obviously raises the question of where in 
> the Pacific these birds are coming from.  Perhaps the species makeup 
> may provide a pointer. We have been getting Slaty-backed and Glaucous-winged 
(types). 

> Interestingly no yet confirmed or suspected Western, Mew or 
> Californian Gulls.
>
>
>
> Regards
>
>
>
> Mike O’Keeffe
>
> Ireland
>
>
>
>
>
> From: whoffman AT peak.org [mailto:whoffman AT peak.org]
> Sent: 09 January 2016 03:10
> To: Mike O'Keeffe
> Cc: BIRDWG01
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
>
>
> Re:  Irish Claucous-winged Gull
>
>
>
> Hi –
>
>
>
> I have been following this thread but have not had time to comment 
> until now.  In an earlier post the question was raised of research on 
> the variation in wingtip color in non-hybrid GW Gulls.
>
>
>
> I studied hybridization between GW and Western Gulls in the mid-1970s.  
> I found extensive hybridization, of course, but a strong tendency in 
> the middle of the zone for birds to be mated to individuals fairly 
> similiar to themselves on a hybrid index.  Thus, most darker 
> intermediates were paired with darker intermediates, paler with paler and so 
on. 

>
>
>
> More importantly, Douglas Bell did a more comprehensive study of the 
> zone of contact and hybridization in the 1990s, published in the late 
> 1990s, early 2000s, using both morphological and molecular variables.
>
>
>
> He also found extensive hybridization, of course.  He concluded (and I
> agree) that the zone of contact and hybridization is quite old, and 
> the frequency of hybridization has probably increased and decreased 
> through time, at least in part tracking abundance.  He considered the 
> current situation to be an upswing related to population increases for 
> both species that have resulted from increases in anthropogenic food sources.
>
>
>
> I take this to mean that while some of the "other" morphological 
> signal found in each population is the result of recent introgression, 
> some is a relict of ancient hybridization, persisting stably in the 
> recipient population.  I think that this ancient signal should not be 
> used to label birds as hybrids, because it presumably was 
> well-integrated into the genome of the recipient species.
>
>
>
> For a more recent, well-studied example of this, consider 
> Golden-winged and Blue-winged Warblers in eastern North America.  
> Briefly, Blue-wings are expanding their breeding range north and 
> upslope into that of Golden-wings, which are becoming rare.  When the 
> Blue-wings arrive, the two hybridize, but after relatively few 
> generations, Golden-wings disappear and the birds all look pretty much 
> like Blue-wings. However, molecular analyses do show evidence of mixed 
ancestry in these birds that look very much like "pure" 

> Blue-wings.  I would prefer to call these birds Blue-winged Warblers, 
> acknowledging the possibility of vestiges of a mixed gene pool, 
> because otherwise Blue-winged Warblers would be unidentifiable.
>
>
>
> Back to the gulls: My practice is to call birds that are intermediate 
> in multiple traits hybrids, but I consider birds that "deviate" from 
> species norms in only one trait to be within the within-species 
> variation.  Thus, I would call a bird with normal GW eye, eyering, and 
> bill colors but darker wingtips like the Irish bird a Glaucous-winged 
> Gull.  Further, since we apparently cannot attribute the wingtips of 
> the Japanese birds to a known zone of overlap and hybridization, the 
> likely explanation is that it is a relic of past history, stabilized in the 
Glaucous-winged Gull population. 

> Further, I suspect an east Asian origin for a stray to Ireland is 
> probably as likely as an origin on the Washington Coast.
>
>
>
> Hope this helps
>
>
>
> Wayne Hoffman
>
>
>
>
>
>   _____
>
> From: "Mike O'Keeffe" 
> To: "BIRDWG01" 
> Sent: Friday, January 8, 2016 3:55:16 PM
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
>
>
> Amar,
>
> Thanks for the frank response.  Obviously the grey scale element to 
> this interests me most - it was afterall the core subject of my blog post.
> Surely, its intriguing and of interest to this forum that the primary 
> texts appear to exclude the darker Asian GWGs by narrowing the 
> accepted primary grey scale range to 6-8 and, if what you say is 
> correct, so would many of the N. Am rarities committees?  Does this 
> not represent a potential blind spot.  While the hybrid mess may seem 
> like an insurmountable challenge all puzzles I like to believe can be 
cracked. 

>
> Regards
>
> Mike
>
>
>
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Amar Attach [mailto:amarayyash AT gmail.com]
> Sent: 08 January 2016 22:04
> To: Mike O'Keeffe
> Cc: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
> To put this identification conundrum in perspective, the Irish gull 
> would very likely be rejected as a pure Glaucous-winged by most 
> records committees in North America, if not all. This is where we're 
> at with this species:
> person A suspects a hybrid, while person B sees an acceptable GL-winged.
>
> I imagine this thread will continue in this circle regardless of Kodak 
> gray scale values found in the current gull guides.
>
> Best,
> Amar
>
> Amar Ayyash
> www.anythinglarus.com
>
> > On Jan 8, 2016, at 3:24 PM, Mike O'Keeffe  wrote:
> >
> > Hi,
> >
> >
> >
> > Interestingly the comments that I have received today seem to all 
> > have a slant towards a hybrid origin and all referring to the 
> > Pacific NW hybrid zone.  Having been looking at images from Japan 
> > today however I think its safe to say the jury remains out as far as I am 
concerned. 

> > The 6-8 kodak scale primary pattern cutoff for GWG from the 
> > reference guides (both Howell & Dunn and Olsen & Larsson) clearly 
> > cannot possibly include the population of birds wintering in NE Asia.
> >
> >
> >
> > Here are a couple of examples from Asia which I suspect are in the 
> > Kodak scale 8-9 range.
> >
> > http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Z3QHhMZC1GY/UuA3MSmQTII/AAAAAAAADI0/YVVTzM
> > Op
> > u5k/s1
> > 600/japan+birding+Glaucous-winged+Gull+adult+Hanasaki+harbour+Nemuro
> > +H
> > okkaid
> > o+january+2014+Amundsen+Biotope.jpg
> >
> > http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_TjsY98kGM4s/TN_HhqNWCUI/AAAAAAAAKjA/nlhBxt
> > 1B
> > aCs/s1
> > 600/_MG_1352.JPG
> >
> >
> >
> > And here are a couple that could be even darker, in the Kodak scale
> > 9-12 range perhaps, where I think the Irish bird sits.
> >
> > https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/5269088461/
> >
> > https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/6850236860/
> >
> > http://www.birdquest-tours.com/galleryImages/ai_1271238423232.jpg
> >
> >
> >
> > If based on the bird's smallish bill this bird it is said most 
> > closely resembles an American Pacific Northwest GWG X HG (or Cook 
> > Inlet Gull) here is a good match...
> >
> > http://gull-research.org/smithsonianus/images/howell/th/096.JPG
> >
> > ...but for comparison on the Japanese side of the water we have this
> GWG...
> >
> > http://www.stuartelsom.co.uk/assets/gallery/copyrightphotos/JP09-GWG
> > 01
> > -01-09
> > .JPG
> >
> >
> >
> > The Irish bird, whatever it is may have been cut from the same cloth 
> > as this Danish bird which returned for consecutive winters between
> 2009-2012.
> >
> > http://gulldk.blogspot.ie/2013/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glauces
> > ce
> > ns.htm
> > l
> >
> > http://gulldk.blogspot.dk/2012/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glauces
> > ce
> > ns.htm
> > l
> >
> >
> >
> > Regards
> >
> >
> >
> > Mike O'Keeffe
> >
> > Ireland
> >
> > http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-
> > sc
> > ales-a
> > nd-gulls.html
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: Lethaby, Nick [mailto:nlethaby AT ti.com]
> > Sent: 07 January 2016 22:14
> > To: Mike O'Keeffe; BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> > Subject: RE: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> >
> >
> >
> > The birds with darker wing-tips are probably mostly wintering in the 
> > Aleutians/Bering Sea close to the breeding grounds or migrating down 
> > to the Kuriles and Hokkaido, which isn't super far. GWGU is rare 
> > south of Hokkaido (one sees just a few at Chosi, the famous gull 
> > site N of Tokyo). So I would expect GWGU with darker wing-tips to 
> > molt fairly early as there is no long migration to arrest molt for. 
> > My impression is that GWGU also molts early on the US Pacific Coast. 
> > At least one doesn't commonly see juvenile plumage well into 
> > mid-late winter as in
> Thayer's and Herring.
> >
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> >
> > From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification [ 
> >  mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] 
> > On Behalf Of Mike O'Keeffe
> >
> > Sent: Thursday, January 07, 2016 12:57 PM
> >
> > To:   BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> >
> > Subject: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> >
> >
> >
> > Hi,
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Thanks everyone for your responses.  There is no doubt that 
> > experienced observers develop an eye and a memory muscle for judging 
> > subtle patterns and tones of commonly observed birds in the field.
> > But I doubt that this field skill is readily transferable to the 
> > assessment of tones from photos.  It seems to me there are simply 
> > too many variables at play.  Perfectly accurate image exposure is 
> > difficult
> enough to achieve at the best of times.
> >
> > Exposure, lighting, dynamic range, lens focal length and relative 
> > perspective among other parameters can all affect the capture and 
> > appearance of subtle tones.  And those are just the ambient lighting 
> > and exposure elements.  A bird's posture and angle relative to the 
> > camera plays an equally important role.  So I often wonder are we 
> > fooling ourselves when we try and gauge tonal levels so precisely 
> > from photographs.  A comparative analysis like a grey scale tool 
> > provides some basis for a more objective, comparative analysis than 
> > one based
> solely on our visual perception.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > I estimate, based on a comparative analysis using the grey scale 
> > tool, and backed up by what I saw of the Irish bird in the field 
> > that the Irish GWG has a mantle grey scale value close to 6 and a 
> > comparable primary pattern grey scale value of at least 10 and probably 11 
or 12. 

> >
> >
> >
> > http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-
> > sc
> > ales-a
> > nd-gulls.html
> >
> >
> >
> > 
> > https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/684841790776721408
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Obviously the outer primaries are not entirely new and should be at 
> > least a couple of month's old.  Surprisingly P7-P9 seem a tad darker 
> > than the still-growing P10 on the right wing.  P10 is missing 
> > entirely on the left wing.  P10 moult seems a couple of months late 
> > by standard references. Is this lateness ever encountered within it's 
normal N. 

> > American range?  Do Asian winterers moult P10 later than N. American 
> > birds?  Or could it's lateness simply be a reflection of the type of 
> > journey this bird may have undergone?  Is this an example of 
> > arrested moult?  The ragged tips of its tail and secondaries and the 
> > presence of what might be oil staining on its lesser and marginal 
> > coverts, plus a broken P8 feather (right wing) all suggest this bird 
> > has had a rough ride!  And it doesn't seem to be very dominant while 
> > coming to bread at the pier either!  See photos of a nasty attack by 
> > a young HG
> >
> > 
> > https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/683756672913899521
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > In the two main gull reference guides I found the following points 
> > of interest.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Howell & Dunn
> >
> >
> >
> > "Adult has pale grey upperparts (Kodak 5-6) with medium grey 
> > wingtips (6-8; averaging paler on Northern populations)...".
> >
> >
> >
> > Taken at face value, and assuming my analysis of grey scale is 
> > roughly correct, this puts the Irish bird well outside the normal 
> > published range at least for N. American GWG according to Howell and 
> > Dunn.  But it's not clear how definitive this point is and from what 
> > studies specifically it has been derived.  Was the study based solely on N.
> > American birds and from what part of the range?  Could there be an 
> > element of selective or experimental bias trying to second-guess the 
> > hybrid element in these data sets?  One thing is for sure - grey 
> > scale
> > 6-8 represents a very small margin beyond concolorous with the 
> > mantle
> shade - almost imperceptible in the field I should think.
> >
> > The Irish bird is certainly much darker than that.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Olsen & Larsson
> >
> >
> >
> > Plates on page 162 depict birds with primary tips very similar in 
> > tone to the mantle and these are considered good GWGs.  I would have 
> > little difficulty accepting these fall in the grey scale range 1-2 
> > levels above mantle shade.  Plate 179 on page 163 depicts a bird 
> > similar to or perhaps just marginally darker-tipped than the Irish 
> > bird and it is described as "too dark for Glaucous-winged" but again 
> > without a clear explanation as to how that assertion was arrived at.  
> > In the body text..."birds with (primary pattern Kodak grey scale 
> > level) 8-12 probably of hybrid origin".  It also mentions that for 
> > Glaucous-winged X Western hybrids the "darker wing-tip" is "Kodak grey 
scale 10-12". 

> > This again seems to be in line with the Irish bird based on my 
> > analysis.  But again what studies are these remarks based upon and 
> > how
> was
> the hybrid cut-off line determined.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > In summary
> >
> >
> >
> > The overall consensus among those from N. America who have commented 
> > it seems (though with a few people being cautious) is that despite 
> > the bird's fairly dark primaries the bird is considered within "the 
> > currently accepted range" for GWG in N. America.  With no other 
> > obvious hybrid features it seems to be a good GWG, perhaps an even 
> > better candidate from an Asian population perspective.  Still a 
> > hybrid or back-cross cannot be totally eliminated.  Furthermore my 
> > analysis if correct (primary grey scale 11-12) is at odd with both 
> > the main published reference guides.  This suggests that the 
> > perception of what is just about acceptable as a GWG among gull 
> > experts in N.Am in terms of the Kodak scale at the moment is not in 
> > line with the current standard reference guides, for whom a primary 
> > pattern grey-scale of
> >
> > 6-8 is considered the limit.  It would be really useful to know what 
> > specific studies the 6-8 limit is based upon and was there any 
> > genetic analysis underpinning it.  It would also be useful to know 
> > why birders consider the acceptable range of darkness to be greater 
> > than what is currently published.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Regards
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Mike O'Keeffe
> >
> >
> >
> > Ireland
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
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> >
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Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
From: "Mike O'Keeffe" <okeeffeml AT EIRCOM.NET>
Date: Sun, 10 Jan 2016 09:47:17 +0000
Dick,

Human's certainly do like to create artificial boundaries. We draw lines across 
a landscape and define countries. We define species lines which species 
regularly thread upon. We define national lists without knowing the true 
provenance or very often the genetic makeup of our vagrants. It's all flawed 
logic but as Alvaro put it humans need to be willing to accept uncertainty, and 
thats not currently in our makeup. But things could change. Perhaps future 
generations of kids will learn about the world and biology the way it exists 
and not by the rigid rules we were thought to apply to it. Its always easier to 
debate issues and find agreement when the rules are simple. When the rules are 
more flexible its easier to disagree then to agree. Maybe future generations 
will be more enlightened and the debates will move on a bit and there will be a 
new paradigm for dealing with the thorny issues of vagrancy and gene flow. 


Regards

Mike


-----Original Message-----
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification 
[mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of Dick Newell 

Sent: 09 January 2016 11:00
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

Mike,
The European Herring Gull originated from some hybrid swarm in the past 
involving quite a few other 'species'. As a result, it is highly variable in 
appearance, but we are happy to call it one species. Doubtless the 
Glaucous-winged Gull is similar, it is just that some of the hybrid activity 
may be a bit more recent. How many generations back would you need to go to 
find a dark-winged ancestor of your gull, less than which you would not call it 
a Glaucous-winged Gull? 


Barak Obama is called the first black president, but he has a caucasian mother. 
I read somewhere that in the US anybody who is at least 1/32 (5 

generations) of African ancestor is classified as black. Although it is not 
politically incorrect to refer to the race of a person, all people are lumped. 


The situation with the large white-headed gulls is similar, but we do our 
darndest to split them. So do we not need a policy decision. If a bird is 95% 
OK (as with your gull), then have it! 


I realise that this would be the opposite policy than with black people, but 
since when was taxonomy logical? To a large extent it is driven by politics. 

Dick, Cambridge, UK

On 9 January 2016 at 07:42, Mike O'Keeffe  wrote:

> Hi and thanks for continuing the thread,
>
>
>
> My own personal approach to vagrancy would probably be more in line 
> with that of Alvaro and Wayne than with the more conservative, black 
> and white view of things.  There is merits in both stances.  I think 
> that traditionally the Irish Rarities Committee would have taken a 
> pragmatic approach when dealing with questions like Thayer’s Gull and 
> Elegant Tern for instance.  With the lack of strong evidence for 
> hybridization the tendency has been to give the benefit of the doubt.  
> Whether rightly or wrongly and whether the current committee will take 
> the approach to the Irish GWG no matter.  At the end of the day we may 
> never know what the right thing to do is in some cases.
>
>
>
> The recent increase in Pacific gulls reaching NW Europe, presumably 
> due to receding Arctic ice obviously raises the question of where in 
> the Pacific these birds are coming from.  Perhaps the species makeup 
> may provide a pointer. We have been getting Slaty-backed and Glaucous-winged 
(types). 

> Interestingly no yet confirmed or suspected Western, Mew or 
> Californian Gulls.
>
>
>
> Regards
>
>
>
> Mike O’Keeffe
>
> Ireland
>
>
>
>
>
> From: whoffman AT peak.org [mailto:whoffman AT peak.org]
> Sent: 09 January 2016 03:10
> To: Mike O'Keeffe
> Cc: BIRDWG01
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
>
>
> Re:  Irish Claucous-winged Gull
>
>
>
> Hi –
>
>
>
> I have been following this thread but have not had time to comment 
> until now.  In an earlier post the question was raised of research on 
> the variation in wingtip color in non-hybrid GW Gulls.
>
>
>
> I studied hybridization between GW and Western Gulls in the mid-1970s.  
> I found extensive hybridization, of course, but a strong tendency in 
> the middle of the zone for birds to be mated to individuals fairly 
> similiar to themselves on a hybrid index.  Thus, most darker 
> intermediates were paired with darker intermediates, paler with paler and so 
on. 

>
>
>
> More importantly, Douglas Bell did a more comprehensive study of the 
> zone of contact and hybridization in the 1990s, published in the late 
> 1990s, early 2000s, using both morphological and molecular variables.
>
>
>
> He also found extensive hybridization, of course.  He concluded (and I
> agree) that the zone of contact and hybridization is quite old, and 
> the frequency of hybridization has probably increased and decreased 
> through time, at least in part tracking abundance.  He considered the 
> current situation to be an upswing related to population increases for 
> both species that have resulted from increases in anthropogenic food sources.
>
>
>
> I take this to mean that while some of the "other" morphological 
> signal found in each population is the result of recent introgression, 
> some is a relict of ancient hybridization, persisting stably in the 
> recipient population.  I think that this ancient signal should not be 
> used to label birds as hybrids, because it presumably was 
> well-integrated into the genome of the recipient species.
>
>
>
> For a more recent, well-studied example of this, consider 
> Golden-winged and Blue-winged Warblers in eastern North America.  
> Briefly, Blue-wings are expanding their breeding range north and 
> upslope into that of Golden-wings, which are becoming rare.  When the 
> Blue-wings arrive, the two hybridize, but after relatively few 
> generations, Golden-wings disappear and the birds all look pretty much 
> like Blue-wings. However, molecular analyses do show evidence of mixed 
ancestry in these birds that look very much like "pure" 

> Blue-wings.  I would prefer to call these birds Blue-winged Warblers, 
> acknowledging the possibility of vestiges of a mixed gene pool, 
> because otherwise Blue-winged Warblers would be unidentifiable.
>
>
>
> Back to the gulls: My practice is to call birds that are intermediate 
> in multiple traits hybrids, but I consider birds that "deviate" from 
> species norms in only one trait to be within the within-species 
> variation.  Thus, I would call a bird with normal GW eye, eyering, and 
> bill colors but darker wingtips like the Irish bird a Glaucous-winged 
> Gull.  Further, since we apparently cannot attribute the wingtips of 
> the Japanese birds to a known zone of overlap and hybridization, the 
> likely explanation is that it is a relic of past history, stabilized in the 
Glaucous-winged Gull population. 

> Further, I suspect an east Asian origin for a stray to Ireland is 
> probably as likely as an origin on the Washington Coast.
>
>
>
> Hope this helps
>
>
>
> Wayne Hoffman
>
>
>
>
>
>   _____
>
> From: "Mike O'Keeffe" 
> To: "BIRDWG01" 
> Sent: Friday, January 8, 2016 3:55:16 PM
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
>
>
> Amar,
>
> Thanks for the frank response.  Obviously the grey scale element to 
> this interests me most - it was afterall the core subject of my blog post.
> Surely, its intriguing and of interest to this forum that the primary 
> texts appear to exclude the darker Asian GWGs by narrowing the 
> accepted primary grey scale range to 6-8 and, if what you say is 
> correct, so would many of the N. Am rarities committees?  Does this 
> not represent a potential blind spot.  While the hybrid mess may seem 
> like an insurmountable challenge all puzzles I like to believe can be 
cracked. 

>
> Regards
>
> Mike
>
>
>
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Amar Attach [mailto:amarayyash AT gmail.com]
> Sent: 08 January 2016 22:04
> To: Mike O'Keeffe
> Cc: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
> To put this identification conundrum in perspective, the Irish gull 
> would very likely be rejected as a pure Glaucous-winged by most 
> records committees in North America, if not all. This is where we're 
> at with this species:
> person A suspects a hybrid, while person B sees an acceptable GL-winged.
>
> I imagine this thread will continue in this circle regardless of Kodak 
> gray scale values found in the current gull guides.
>
> Best,
> Amar
>
> Amar Ayyash
> www.anythinglarus.com
>
> > On Jan 8, 2016, at 3:24 PM, Mike O'Keeffe  wrote:
> >
> > Hi,
> >
> >
> >
> > Interestingly the comments that I have received today seem to all 
> > have a slant towards a hybrid origin and all referring to the 
> > Pacific NW hybrid zone.  Having been looking at images from Japan 
> > today however I think its safe to say the jury remains out as far as I am 
concerned. 

> > The 6-8 kodak scale primary pattern cutoff for GWG from the 
> > reference guides (both Howell & Dunn and Olsen & Larsson) clearly 
> > cannot possibly include the population of birds wintering in NE Asia.
> >
> >
> >
> > Here are a couple of examples from Asia which I suspect are in the 
> > Kodak scale 8-9 range.
> >
> > http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Z3QHhMZC1GY/UuA3MSmQTII/AAAAAAAADI0/YVVTzM
> > Op
> > u5k/s1
> > 600/japan+birding+Glaucous-winged+Gull+adult+Hanasaki+harbour+Nemuro
> > +H
> > okkaid
> > o+january+2014+Amundsen+Biotope.jpg
> >
> > http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_TjsY98kGM4s/TN_HhqNWCUI/AAAAAAAAKjA/nlhBxt
> > 1B
> > aCs/s1
> > 600/_MG_1352.JPG
> >
> >
> >
> > And here are a couple that could be even darker, in the Kodak scale
> > 9-12 range perhaps, where I think the Irish bird sits.
> >
> > https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/5269088461/
> >
> > https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/6850236860/
> >
> > http://www.birdquest-tours.com/galleryImages/ai_1271238423232.jpg
> >
> >
> >
> > If based on the bird's smallish bill this bird it is said most 
> > closely resembles an American Pacific Northwest GWG X HG (or Cook 
> > Inlet Gull) here is a good match...
> >
> > http://gull-research.org/smithsonianus/images/howell/th/096.JPG
> >
> > ...but for comparison on the Japanese side of the water we have this
> GWG...
> >
> > http://www.stuartelsom.co.uk/assets/gallery/copyrightphotos/JP09-GWG
> > 01
> > -01-09
> > .JPG
> >
> >
> >
> > The Irish bird, whatever it is may have been cut from the same cloth 
> > as this Danish bird which returned for consecutive winters between
> 2009-2012.
> >
> > http://gulldk.blogspot.ie/2013/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glauces
> > ce
> > ns.htm
> > l
> >
> > http://gulldk.blogspot.dk/2012/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glauces
> > ce
> > ns.htm
> > l
> >
> >
> >
> > Regards
> >
> >
> >
> > Mike O'Keeffe
> >
> > Ireland
> >
> > http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-
> > sc
> > ales-a
> > nd-gulls.html
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: Lethaby, Nick [mailto:nlethaby AT ti.com]
> > Sent: 07 January 2016 22:14
> > To: Mike O'Keeffe; BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> > Subject: RE: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> >
> >
> >
> > The birds with darker wing-tips are probably mostly wintering in the 
> > Aleutians/Bering Sea close to the breeding grounds or migrating down 
> > to the Kuriles and Hokkaido, which isn't super far. GWGU is rare 
> > south of Hokkaido (one sees just a few at Chosi, the famous gull 
> > site N of Tokyo). So I would expect GWGU with darker wing-tips to 
> > molt fairly early as there is no long migration to arrest molt for. 
> > My impression is that GWGU also molts early on the US Pacific Coast. 
> > At least one doesn't commonly see juvenile plumage well into 
> > mid-late winter as in
> Thayer's and Herring.
> >
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> >
> > From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification [ 
> >  mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] 
> > On Behalf Of Mike O'Keeffe
> >
> > Sent: Thursday, January 07, 2016 12:57 PM
> >
> > To:   BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> >
> > Subject: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> >
> >
> >
> > Hi,
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Thanks everyone for your responses.  There is no doubt that 
> > experienced observers develop an eye and a memory muscle for judging 
> > subtle patterns and tones of commonly observed birds in the field.
> > But I doubt that this field skill is readily transferable to the 
> > assessment of tones from photos.  It seems to me there are simply 
> > too many variables at play.  Perfectly accurate image exposure is 
> > difficult
> enough to achieve at the best of times.
> >
> > Exposure, lighting, dynamic range, lens focal length and relative 
> > perspective among other parameters can all affect the capture and 
> > appearance of subtle tones.  And those are just the ambient lighting 
> > and exposure elements.  A bird's posture and angle relative to the 
> > camera plays an equally important role.  So I often wonder are we 
> > fooling ourselves when we try and gauge tonal levels so precisely 
> > from photographs.  A comparative analysis like a grey scale tool 
> > provides some basis for a more objective, comparative analysis than 
> > one based
> solely on our visual perception.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > I estimate, based on a comparative analysis using the grey scale 
> > tool, and backed up by what I saw of the Irish bird in the field 
> > that the Irish GWG has a mantle grey scale value close to 6 and a 
> > comparable primary pattern grey scale value of at least 10 and probably 11 
or 12. 

> >
> >
> >
> > http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-
> > sc
> > ales-a
> > nd-gulls.html
> >
> >
> >
> > 
> > https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/684841790776721408
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Obviously the outer primaries are not entirely new and should be at 
> > least a couple of month's old.  Surprisingly P7-P9 seem a tad darker 
> > than the still-growing P10 on the right wing.  P10 is missing 
> > entirely on the left wing.  P10 moult seems a couple of months late 
> > by standard references. Is this lateness ever encountered within it's 
normal N. 

> > American range?  Do Asian winterers moult P10 later than N. American 
> > birds?  Or could it's lateness simply be a reflection of the type of 
> > journey this bird may have undergone?  Is this an example of 
> > arrested moult?  The ragged tips of its tail and secondaries and the 
> > presence of what might be oil staining on its lesser and marginal 
> > coverts, plus a broken P8 feather (right wing) all suggest this bird 
> > has had a rough ride!  And it doesn't seem to be very dominant while 
> > coming to bread at the pier either!  See photos of a nasty attack by 
> > a young HG
> >
> > 
> > https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/683756672913899521
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > In the two main gull reference guides I found the following points 
> > of interest.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Howell & Dunn
> >
> >
> >
> > "Adult has pale grey upperparts (Kodak 5-6) with medium grey 
> > wingtips (6-8; averaging paler on Northern populations)...".
> >
> >
> >
> > Taken at face value, and assuming my analysis of grey scale is 
> > roughly correct, this puts the Irish bird well outside the normal 
> > published range at least for N. American GWG according to Howell and 
> > Dunn.  But it's not clear how definitive this point is and from what 
> > studies specifically it has been derived.  Was the study based solely on N.
> > American birds and from what part of the range?  Could there be an 
> > element of selective or experimental bias trying to second-guess the 
> > hybrid element in these data sets?  One thing is for sure - grey 
> > scale
> > 6-8 represents a very small margin beyond concolorous with the 
> > mantle
> shade - almost imperceptible in the field I should think.
> >
> > The Irish bird is certainly much darker than that.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Olsen & Larsson
> >
> >
> >
> > Plates on page 162 depict birds with primary tips very similar in 
> > tone to the mantle and these are considered good GWGs.  I would have 
> > little difficulty accepting these fall in the grey scale range 1-2 
> > levels above mantle shade.  Plate 179 on page 163 depicts a bird 
> > similar to or perhaps just marginally darker-tipped than the Irish 
> > bird and it is described as "too dark for Glaucous-winged" but again 
> > without a clear explanation as to how that assertion was arrived at.  
> > In the body text..."birds with (primary pattern Kodak grey scale 
> > level) 8-12 probably of hybrid origin".  It also mentions that for 
> > Glaucous-winged X Western hybrids the "darker wing-tip" is "Kodak grey 
scale 10-12". 

> > This again seems to be in line with the Irish bird based on my 
> > analysis.  But again what studies are these remarks based upon and 
> > how
> was
> the hybrid cut-off line determined.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > In summary
> >
> >
> >
> > The overall consensus among those from N. America who have commented 
> > it seems (though with a few people being cautious) is that despite 
> > the bird's fairly dark primaries the bird is considered within "the 
> > currently accepted range" for GWG in N. America.  With no other 
> > obvious hybrid features it seems to be a good GWG, perhaps an even 
> > better candidate from an Asian population perspective.  Still a 
> > hybrid or back-cross cannot be totally eliminated.  Furthermore my 
> > analysis if correct (primary grey scale 11-12) is at odd with both 
> > the main published reference guides.  This suggests that the 
> > perception of what is just about acceptable as a GWG among gull 
> > experts in N.Am in terms of the Kodak scale at the moment is not in 
> > line with the current standard reference guides, for whom a primary 
> > pattern grey-scale of
> >
> > 6-8 is considered the limit.  It would be really useful to know what 
> > specific studies the 6-8 limit is based upon and was there any 
> > genetic analysis underpinning it.  It would also be useful to know 
> > why birders consider the acceptable range of darkness to be greater 
> > than what is currently published.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Regards
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Mike O'Keeffe
> >
> >
> >
> > Ireland
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
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Subject: Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
From: "Mike O'Keeffe" <okeeffeml AT EIRCOM.NET>
Date: Sun, 10 Jan 2016 09:31:55 +0000
Hi Chris,

Birders in Ireland are not beyond collecting feathers and poo for DNA analysis 
and have had success in confirming Northern Harrier, Eastern Yellow Wagtail, 
Desert Lesser Whitethroat, abeitinus race Chiffchaff etc, settling various 
questions. Its certainly a brilliant tool! Hopefully someone will get lucky 
with this bird. 


Regards

Mike 


-----Original Message-----
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification 
[mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of Chris Corben 

Sent: 09 January 2016 12:18
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

No-one ever seems to talk about getting genetic samples from vagrant gulls such 
as this. Lots of efforts to take great photos, but why isn't there an automatic 
move to make the effort to collect shed feathers or faeces samples? These are 
gulls - it shouldn't be that difficult if the effort was made. 


It's not like a genetic sample is going to solve anything in the short term, 
but it is easy to preserve such material which can become a permanent record 
for future analysis. If the identity matters, why not make the effort? 


Chris.

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Subject: Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
From: Dick Newell <dick.newell AT GMAIL.COM>
Date: Sat, 9 Jan 2016 21:48:26 +0000
Hi Alvaro,
I didn't use my words carefully enough. I was trying to say that the
current European Herring Gull is a mixture of several ancestors (so much
for phylogenetic 'trees'). I am not sure of the semantic difference between
an overlap zone, in which hybridisation occurs, and a hybrid swarm. The
Herring Gull probably overlapped multiple times with other 'species' with
which it hybridised.

It seems to me that the current Glaucous-winged Gull is maybe the same.
Just how far back does a dark-winged ancestor need to be in order for it
not to be disqualified.

In the case of the Irish Gull, if it had a dark-winged ancestor, I would
guess it was several (more than one) generations back as it looks so good
in all respects. Even the dark primaries are OK for some people.

So rather than hand ringing and going in circles, why not make a simple
policy decision?

As regards jaeger/skua ancestry, I have not read any convincing explanation
of how the current situation arose - has there been anything recent to
explain it?
Dick

On 9 January 2016 at 21:21, Alvaro Jaramillo  wrote:

> Dick,
>
>    I have read that one, but did not interpret it as you did. I think what
> they are saying is that the original lineage of argentatus had a historical
> introgression (hybridization) event with members of the Caspian-Lesser BB
> group. So genes are retained in the current argentatus from that event. But
> your note suggests that argentatus arose from a hybrid lineage, as is
> thought Pomarine Jaeger/Skua did, or Audubon’s Warbler, various Darwin’s
> Finches etc. I don’t think that this paper suggests a hybrid swarm that
> then generated a new lineage. I know, it is picky, but these seem to be
> very different scenarios to me. Of course I may have misunderstood this
> paper entirely!
>
> Alvaro
>
>
>
> Alvaro Jaramillo
>
> alvaro AT alvarosadventures.com
>
> www.alvarosadventures.com
>
>
>
> *From:* Dick Newell [mailto:dick.newell AT gmail.com]
> *Sent:* Saturday, January 9, 2016 12:59 PM
> *To:* Alvaro Jaramillo 
> *Subject:* Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
>
>
> Try this
> 
 

> Alvaro
>
> Dick
>
>
>
> On 9 January 2016 at 20:55, Alvaro Jaramillo  wrote:
>
> Dick,
>    What is the reference for the European Herring Gull originating from a
> hybrid swarm? That is new to me.
> Regards
> Alvaro
>
> Alvaro Jaramillo
> alvaro AT alvarosadventures.com
> www.alvarosadventures.com
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification [mailto:
> BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of Dick Newell
> Sent: Saturday, January 9, 2016 3:00 AM
> To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
> Mike,
> The European Herring Gull originated from some hybrid swarm in the past
> involving quite a few other 'species'. As a result, it is highly variable
> in appearance, but we are happy to call it one species. Doubtless the
> Glaucous-winged Gull is similar, it is just that some of the hybrid
> activity may be a bit more recent. How many generations back would you need
> to go to find a dark-winged ancestor of your gull, less than which you
> would not call it a Glaucous-winged Gull?
>
> Barak Obama is called the first black president, but he has a caucasian
> mother. I read somewhere that in the US anybody who is at least 1/32 (5
> generations) of African ancestor is classified as black. Although it is
> not politically incorrect to refer to the race of a person, all people are
> lumped.
>
> The situation with the large white-headed gulls is similar, but we do our
> darndest to split them. So do we not need a policy decision. If a bird is
> 95% OK (as with your gull), then have it!
>
> I realise that this would be the opposite policy than with black people,
> but since when was taxonomy logical? To a large extent it is driven by
> politics.
> Dick, Cambridge, UK
>
> On 9 January 2016 at 07:42, Mike O'Keeffe  wrote:
>
> > Hi and thanks for continuing the thread,
> >
> >
> >
> > My own personal approach to vagrancy would probably be more in line
> > with that of Alvaro and Wayne than with the more conservative, black
> > and white view of things.  There is merits in both stances.  I think
> > that traditionally the Irish Rarities Committee would have taken a
> > pragmatic approach when dealing with questions like Thayer’s Gull and
> > Elegant Tern for instance.  With the lack of strong evidence for
> > hybridization the tendency has been to give the benefit of the doubt.
> > Whether rightly or wrongly and whether the current committee will take
> > the approach to the Irish GWG no matter.  At the end of the day we may
> > never know what the right thing to do is in some cases.
> >
> >
> >
> > The recent increase in Pacific gulls reaching NW Europe, presumably
> > due to receding Arctic ice obviously raises the question of where in
> > the Pacific these birds are coming from.  Perhaps the species makeup
> > may provide a pointer.  We have been getting Slaty-backed and
> Glaucous-winged (types).
> > Interestingly no yet confirmed or suspected Western, Mew or
> > Californian Gulls.
> >
> >
> >
> > Regards
> >
> >
> >
> > Mike O’Keeffe
> >
> > Ireland
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > From: whoffman AT peak.org [mailto:whoffman AT peak.org]
> > Sent: 09 January 2016 03:10
> > To: Mike O'Keeffe
> > Cc: BIRDWG01
> > Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> >
> >
> >
> > Re:  Irish Claucous-winged Gull
> >
> >
> >
> > Hi –
> >
> >
> >
> > I have been following this thread but have not had time to comment
> > until now.  In an earlier post the question was raised of research on
> > the variation in wingtip color in non-hybrid GW Gulls.
> >
> >
> >
> > I studied hybridization between GW and Western Gulls in the mid-1970s.
> > I found extensive hybridization, of course, but a strong tendency in
> > the middle of the zone for birds to be mated to individuals fairly
> > similiar to themselves on a hybrid index.  Thus, most darker
> > intermediates were paired with darker intermediates, paler with paler
> and so on.
> >
> >
> >
> > More importantly, Douglas Bell did a more comprehensive study of the
> > zone of contact and hybridization in the 1990s, published in the late
> > 1990s, early 2000s, using both morphological and molecular variables.
> >
> >
> >
> > He also found extensive hybridization, of course.  He concluded (and I
> > agree) that the zone of contact and hybridization is quite old, and
> > the frequency of hybridization has probably increased and decreased
> > through time, at least in part tracking abundance.  He considered the
> > current situation to be an upswing related to population increases for
> > both species that have resulted from increases in anthropogenic food
> sources.
> >
> >
> >
> > I take this to mean that while some of the "other" morphological
> > signal found in each population is the result of recent introgression,
> > some is a relict of ancient hybridization, persisting stably in the
> > recipient population.  I think that this ancient signal should not be
> > used to label birds as hybrids, because it presumably was
> > well-integrated into the genome of the recipient species.
> >
> >
> >
> > For a more recent, well-studied example of this, consider
> > Golden-winged and Blue-winged Warblers in eastern North America.
> > Briefly, Blue-wings are expanding their breeding range north and
> > upslope into that of Golden-wings, which are becoming rare.  When the
> > Blue-wings arrive, the two hybridize, but after relatively few
> > generations, Golden-wings disappear and the birds all look pretty much
> > like Blue-wings.  However, molecular analyses do show evidence of mixed
> ancestry in these birds that look very much like "pure"
> > Blue-wings.  I would prefer to call these birds Blue-winged Warblers,
> > acknowledging the possibility of vestiges of a mixed gene pool,
> > because otherwise Blue-winged Warblers would be unidentifiable.
> >
> >
> >
> > Back to the gulls: My practice is to call birds that are intermediate
> > in multiple traits hybrids, but I consider birds that "deviate" from
> > species norms in only one trait to be within the within-species
> > variation.  Thus, I would call a bird with normal GW eye, eyering, and
> > bill colors but darker wingtips like the Irish bird a Glaucous-winged
> > Gull.  Further, since we apparently cannot attribute the wingtips of
> > the Japanese birds to a known zone of overlap and hybridization, the
> > likely explanation is that it is a relic of past history, stabilized in
> the Glaucous-winged Gull population.
> > Further, I suspect an east Asian origin for a stray to Ireland is
> > probably as likely as an origin on the Washington Coast.
> >
> >
> >
> > Hope this helps
> >
> >
> >
> > Wayne Hoffman
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >   _____
> >
> > From: "Mike O'Keeffe" 
> > To: "BIRDWG01" 
> > Sent: Friday, January 8, 2016 3:55:16 PM
> > Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> >
> >
> >
> > Amar,
> >
> > Thanks for the frank response.  Obviously the grey scale element to
> > this interests me most - it was afterall the core subject of my blog
> post.
> > Surely, its intriguing and of interest to this forum that the primary
> > texts appear to exclude the darker Asian GWGs by narrowing the
> > accepted primary grey scale range to 6-8 and, if what you say is
> > correct, so would many of the N. Am rarities committees?  Does this
> > not represent a potential blind spot.  While the hybrid mess may seem
> > like an insurmountable challenge all puzzles I like to believe can be
> cracked.
> >
> > Regards
> >
> > Mike
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: Amar Attach [mailto:amarayyash AT gmail.com]
> > Sent: 08 January 2016 22:04
> > To: Mike O'Keeffe
> > Cc: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> > Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> >
> > To put this identification conundrum in perspective, the Irish gull
> > would very likely be rejected as a pure Glaucous-winged by most
> > records committees in North America, if not all. This is where we're
> > at with this species:
> > person A suspects a hybrid, while person B sees an acceptable GL-winged.
> >
> > I imagine this thread will continue in this circle regardless of Kodak
> > gray scale values found in the current gull guides.
> >
> > Best,
> > Amar
> >
> > Amar Ayyash
> > www.anythinglarus.com
> >
> > > On Jan 8, 2016, at 3:24 PM, Mike O'Keeffe 
> wrote:
> > >
> > > Hi,
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > Interestingly the comments that I have received today seem to all
> > > have a slant towards a hybrid origin and all referring to the
> > > Pacific NW hybrid zone.  Having been looking at images from Japan
> > > today however I think its safe to say the jury remains out as far as I
> am concerned.
> > > The 6-8 kodak scale primary pattern cutoff for GWG from the
> > > reference guides (both Howell & Dunn and Olsen & Larsson) clearly
> > > cannot possibly include the population of birds wintering in NE Asia.
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > Here are a couple of examples from Asia which I suspect are in the
> > > Kodak scale 8-9 range.
> > >
> > > http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Z3QHhMZC1GY/UuA3MSmQTII/AAAAAAAADI0/YVVTzM
> > > Op
> > > u5k/s1
> > > 600/japan+birding+Glaucous-winged+Gull+adult+Hanasaki+harbour+Nemuro
> > > +H
> > > okkaid
> > > o+january+2014+Amundsen+Biotope.jpg
> > >
> > > http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_TjsY98kGM4s/TN_HhqNWCUI/AAAAAAAAKjA/nlhBxt
> > > 1B
> > > aCs/s1
> > > 600/_MG_1352.JPG
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > And here are a couple that could be even darker, in the Kodak scale
> > > 9-12 range perhaps, where I think the Irish bird sits.
> > >
> > > https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/5269088461/
> > >
> > > https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/6850236860/
> > >
> > > http://www.birdquest-tours.com/galleryImages/ai_1271238423232.jpg
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > If based on the bird's smallish bill this bird it is said most
> > > closely resembles an American Pacific Northwest GWG X HG (or Cook
> > > Inlet Gull) here is a good match...
> > >
> > > http://gull-research.org/smithsonianus/images/howell/th/096.JPG
> > >
> > > ...but for comparison on the Japanese side of the water we have this
> > GWG...
> > >
> > > http://www.stuartelsom.co.uk/assets/gallery/copyrightphotos/JP09-GWG
> > > 01
> > > -01-09
> > > .JPG
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > The Irish bird, whatever it is may have been cut from the same cloth
> > > as this Danish bird which returned for consecutive winters between
> > 2009-2012.
> > >
> > > http://gulldk.blogspot.ie/2013/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glauces
> > > ce
> > > ns.htm
> > > l
> > >
> > > http://gulldk.blogspot.dk/2012/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glauces
> > > ce
> > > ns.htm
> > > l
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > Regards
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > Mike O'Keeffe
> > >
> > > Ireland
> > >
> > > http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-
> > > sc
> > > ales-a
> > > nd-gulls.html
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > -----Original Message-----
> > > From: Lethaby, Nick [mailto:nlethaby AT ti.com]
> > > Sent: 07 January 2016 22:14
> > > To: Mike O'Keeffe; BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> > > Subject: RE: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > The birds with darker wing-tips are probably mostly wintering in the
> > > Aleutians/Bering Sea close to the breeding grounds or migrating down
> > > to the Kuriles and Hokkaido, which isn't super far. GWGU is rare
> > > south of Hokkaido (one sees just a few at Chosi, the famous gull
> > > site N of Tokyo). So I would expect GWGU with darker wing-tips to
> > > molt fairly early as there is no long migration to arrest molt for.
> > > My impression is that GWGU also molts early on the US Pacific Coast.
> > > At least one doesn't commonly see juvenile plumage well into
> > > mid-late winter as in
> > Thayer's and Herring.
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > -----Original Message-----
> > >
> > > From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification [
> > >  mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU]
> > > On Behalf Of Mike O'Keeffe
> > >
> > > Sent: Thursday, January 07, 2016 12:57 PM
> > >
> > > To:   BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> > >
> > > Subject: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > Hi,
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > Thanks everyone for your responses.  There is no doubt that
> > > experienced observers develop an eye and a memory muscle for judging
> > > subtle patterns and tones of commonly observed birds in the field.
> > > But I doubt that this field skill is readily transferable to the
> > > assessment of tones from photos.  It seems to me there are simply
> > > too many variables at play.  Perfectly accurate image exposure is
> > > difficult
> > enough to achieve at the best of times.
> > >
> > > Exposure, lighting, dynamic range, lens focal length and relative
> > > perspective among other parameters can all affect the capture and
> > > appearance of subtle tones.  And those are just the ambient lighting
> > > and exposure elements.  A bird's posture and angle relative to the
> > > camera plays an equally important role.  So I often wonder are we
> > > fooling ourselves when we try and gauge tonal levels so precisely
> > > from photographs.  A comparative analysis like a grey scale tool
> > > provides some basis for a more objective, comparative analysis than
> > > one based
> > solely on our visual perception.
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > I estimate, based on a comparative analysis using the grey scale
> > > tool, and backed up by what I saw of the Irish bird in the field
> > > that the Irish GWG has a mantle grey scale value close to 6 and a
> > > comparable primary pattern grey scale value of at least 10 and
> probably 11 or 12.
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-
> > > sc
> > > ales-a
> > > nd-gulls.html
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > 
> > > https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/684841790776721408
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > Obviously the outer primaries are not entirely new and should be at
> > > least a couple of month's old.  Surprisingly P7-P9 seem a tad darker
> > > than the still-growing P10 on the right wing.  P10 is missing
> > > entirely on the left wing.  P10 moult seems a couple of months late
> > > by standard references.  Is this lateness ever encountered within it's
> normal N.
> > > American range?  Do Asian winterers moult P10 later than N. American
> > > birds?  Or could it's lateness simply be a reflection of the type of
> > > journey this bird may have undergone?  Is this an example of
> > > arrested moult?  The ragged tips of its tail and secondaries and the
> > > presence of what might be oil staining on its lesser and marginal
> > > coverts, plus a broken P8 feather (right wing) all suggest this bird
> > > has had a rough ride!  And it doesn't seem to be very dominant while
> > > coming to bread at the pier either!  See photos of a nasty attack by
> > > a young HG
> > >
> > > 
> > > https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/683756672913899521
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > In the two main gull reference guides I found the following points
> > > of interest.
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > Howell & Dunn
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > "Adult has pale grey upperparts (Kodak 5-6) with medium grey
> > > wingtips (6-8; averaging paler on Northern populations)...".
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > Taken at face value, and assuming my analysis of grey scale is
> > > roughly correct, this puts the Irish bird well outside the normal
> > > published range at least for N. American GWG according to Howell and
> > > Dunn.  But it's not clear how definitive this point is and from what
> > > studies specifically it has been derived.  Was the study based solely
> on N.
> > > American birds and from what part of the range?  Could there be an
> > > element of selective or experimental bias trying to second-guess the
> > > hybrid element in these data sets?  One thing is for sure - grey
> > > scale
> > > 6-8 represents a very small margin beyond concolorous with the
> > > mantle
> > shade - almost imperceptible in the field I should think.
> > >
> > > The Irish bird is certainly much darker than that.
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > Olsen & Larsson
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > Plates on page 162 depict birds with primary tips very similar in
> > > tone to the mantle and these are considered good GWGs.  I would have
> > > little difficulty accepting these fall in the grey scale range 1-2
> > > levels above mantle shade.  Plate 179 on page 163 depicts a bird
> > > similar to or perhaps just marginally darker-tipped than the Irish
> > > bird and it is described as "too dark for Glaucous-winged" but again
> > > without a clear explanation as to how that assertion was arrived at.
> > > In the body text..."birds with (primary pattern Kodak grey scale
> > > level) 8-12 probably of hybrid origin".  It also mentions that for
> > > Glaucous-winged X Western hybrids the "darker wing-tip" is "Kodak grey
> scale 10-12".
> > > This again seems to be in line with the Irish bird based on my
> > > analysis.  But again what studies are these remarks based upon and
> > > how
> > was
> > the hybrid cut-off line determined.
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > In summary
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > The overall consensus among those from N. America who have commented
> > > it seems (though with a few people being cautious) is that despite
> > > the bird's fairly dark primaries the bird is considered within "the
> > > currently accepted range" for GWG in N. America.  With no other
> > > obvious hybrid features it seems to be a good GWG, perhaps an even
> > > better candidate from an Asian population perspective.  Still a
> > > hybrid or back-cross cannot be totally eliminated.  Furthermore my
> > > analysis if correct (primary grey scale 11-12) is at odd with both
> > > the main published reference guides.  This suggests that the
> > > perception of what is just about acceptable as a GWG among gull
> > > experts in N.Am in terms of the Kodak scale at the moment is not in
> > > line with the current standard reference guides, for whom a primary
> > > pattern grey-scale of
> > >
> > > 6-8 is considered the limit.  It would be really useful to know what
> > > specific studies the 6-8 limit is based upon and was there any
> > > genetic analysis underpinning it.  It would also be useful to know
> > > why birders consider the acceptable range of darkness to be greater
> > > than what is currently published.
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > Regards
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > Mike O'Keeffe
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > Ireland
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
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Subject: Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
From: Alvaro Jaramillo <chucao AT COASTSIDE.NET>
Date: Sat, 9 Jan 2016 13:21:34 -0800
Dick, 

 I have read that one, but did not interpret it as you did. I think what they 
are saying is that the original lineage of argentatus had a historical 
introgression (hybridization) event with members of the Caspian-Lesser BB 
group. So genes are retained in the current argentatus from that event. But 
your note suggests that argentatus arose from a hybrid lineage, as is thought 
Pomarine Jaeger/Skua did, or Audubon’s Warbler, various Darwin’s Finches 
etc. I don’t think that this paper suggests a hybrid swarm that then 
generated a new lineage. I know, it is picky, but these seem to be very 
different scenarios to me. Of course I may have misunderstood this paper 
entirely! 


Alvaro 

 

Alvaro Jaramillo

  alvaro AT alvarosadventures.com

www.alvarosadventures.com

 

From: Dick Newell [mailto:dick.newell AT gmail.com] 
Sent: Saturday, January 9, 2016 12:59 PM
To: Alvaro Jaramillo 
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

 

Try this 
 
Alvaro 


Dick

 

On 9 January 2016 at 20:55, Alvaro Jaramillo  > wrote: 


Dick,
 What is the reference for the European Herring Gull originating from a hybrid 
swarm? That is new to me. 

Regards
Alvaro

Alvaro Jaramillo
alvaro AT alvarosadventures.com  
www.alvarosadventures.com  



-----Original Message-----
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification 
[mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU  ] On 
Behalf Of Dick Newell 

Sent: Saturday, January 9, 2016 3:00 AM
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU  
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

Mike,
The European Herring Gull originated from some hybrid swarm in the past 
involving quite a few other 'species'. As a result, it is highly variable in 
appearance, but we are happy to call it one species. Doubtless the 
Glaucous-winged Gull is similar, it is just that some of the hybrid activity 
may be a bit more recent. How many generations back would you need to go to 
find a dark-winged ancestor of your gull, less than which you would not call it 
a Glaucous-winged Gull? 


Barak Obama is called the first black president, but he has a caucasian mother. 
I read somewhere that in the US anybody who is at least 1/32 (5 

generations) of African ancestor is classified as black. Although it is not 
politically incorrect to refer to the race of a person, all people are lumped. 


The situation with the large white-headed gulls is similar, but we do our 
darndest to split them. So do we not need a policy decision. If a bird is 95% 
OK (as with your gull), then have it! 


I realise that this would be the opposite policy than with black people, but 
since when was taxonomy logical? To a large extent it is driven by politics. 

Dick, Cambridge, UK

On 9 January 2016 at 07:42, Mike O'Keeffe  > wrote: 


> Hi and thanks for continuing the thread,
>
>
>
> My own personal approach to vagrancy would probably be more in line
> with that of Alvaro and Wayne than with the more conservative, black
> and white view of things.  There is merits in both stances.  I think
> that traditionally the Irish Rarities Committee would have taken a
> pragmatic approach when dealing with questions like Thayer’s Gull and
> Elegant Tern for instance.  With the lack of strong evidence for
> hybridization the tendency has been to give the benefit of the doubt.
> Whether rightly or wrongly and whether the current committee will take
> the approach to the Irish GWG no matter.  At the end of the day we may
> never know what the right thing to do is in some cases.
>
>
>
> The recent increase in Pacific gulls reaching NW Europe, presumably
> due to receding Arctic ice obviously raises the question of where in
> the Pacific these birds are coming from.  Perhaps the species makeup
> may provide a pointer. We have been getting Slaty-backed and Glaucous-winged 
(types). 

> Interestingly no yet confirmed or suspected Western, Mew or
> Californian Gulls.
>
>
>
> Regards
>
>
>
> Mike O’Keeffe
>
> Ireland
>
>
>
>
>
> From: whoffman AT peak.org  [mailto:whoffman AT peak.org 
 ] 

> Sent: 09 January 2016 03:10
> To: Mike O'Keeffe
> Cc: BIRDWG01
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
>
>
> Re:  Irish Claucous-winged Gull
>
>
>
> Hi –
>
>
>
> I have been following this thread but have not had time to comment
> until now.  In an earlier post the question was raised of research on
> the variation in wingtip color in non-hybrid GW Gulls.
>
>
>
> I studied hybridization between GW and Western Gulls in the mid-1970s.
> I found extensive hybridization, of course, but a strong tendency in
> the middle of the zone for birds to be mated to individuals fairly
> similiar to themselves on a hybrid index.  Thus, most darker
> intermediates were paired with darker intermediates, paler with paler and so 
on. 

>
>
>
> More importantly, Douglas Bell did a more comprehensive study of the
> zone of contact and hybridization in the 1990s, published in the late
> 1990s, early 2000s, using both morphological and molecular variables.
>
>
>
> He also found extensive hybridization, of course.  He concluded (and I
> agree) that the zone of contact and hybridization is quite old, and
> the frequency of hybridization has probably increased and decreased
> through time, at least in part tracking abundance.  He considered the
> current situation to be an upswing related to population increases for
> both species that have resulted from increases in anthropogenic food sources.
>
>
>
> I take this to mean that while some of the "other" morphological
> signal found in each population is the result of recent introgression,
> some is a relict of ancient hybridization, persisting stably in the
> recipient population.  I think that this ancient signal should not be
> used to label birds as hybrids, because it presumably was
> well-integrated into the genome of the recipient species.
>
>
>
> For a more recent, well-studied example of this, consider
> Golden-winged and Blue-winged Warblers in eastern North America.
> Briefly, Blue-wings are expanding their breeding range north and
> upslope into that of Golden-wings, which are becoming rare.  When the
> Blue-wings arrive, the two hybridize, but after relatively few
> generations, Golden-wings disappear and the birds all look pretty much
> like Blue-wings. However, molecular analyses do show evidence of mixed 
ancestry in these birds that look very much like "pure" 

> Blue-wings.  I would prefer to call these birds Blue-winged Warblers,
> acknowledging the possibility of vestiges of a mixed gene pool,
> because otherwise Blue-winged Warblers would be unidentifiable.
>
>
>
> Back to the gulls: My practice is to call birds that are intermediate
> in multiple traits hybrids, but I consider birds that "deviate" from
> species norms in only one trait to be within the within-species
> variation.  Thus, I would call a bird with normal GW eye, eyering, and
> bill colors but darker wingtips like the Irish bird a Glaucous-winged
> Gull.  Further, since we apparently cannot attribute the wingtips of
> the Japanese birds to a known zone of overlap and hybridization, the
> likely explanation is that it is a relic of past history, stabilized in the 
Glaucous-winged Gull population. 

> Further, I suspect an east Asian origin for a stray to Ireland is
> probably as likely as an origin on the Washington Coast.
>
>
>
> Hope this helps
>
>
>
> Wayne Hoffman
>
>
>
>
>
>   _____
>
> From: "Mike O'Keeffe"  >
> To: "BIRDWG01"  
> 

> Sent: Friday, January 8, 2016 3:55:16 PM
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
>
>
> Amar,
>
> Thanks for the frank response.  Obviously the grey scale element to
> this interests me most - it was afterall the core subject of my blog post.
> Surely, its intriguing and of interest to this forum that the primary
> texts appear to exclude the darker Asian GWGs by narrowing the
> accepted primary grey scale range to 6-8 and, if what you say is
> correct, so would many of the N. Am rarities committees?  Does this
> not represent a potential blind spot.  While the hybrid mess may seem
> like an insurmountable challenge all puzzles I like to believe can be 
cracked. 

>
> Regards
>
> Mike
>
>
>
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Amar Attach [mailto:amarayyash AT gmail.com  
] 

> Sent: 08 January 2016 22:04
> To: Mike O'Keeffe
> Cc: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU  
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
> To put this identification conundrum in perspective, the Irish gull
> would very likely be rejected as a pure Glaucous-winged by most
> records committees in North America, if not all. This is where we're
> at with this species:
> person A suspects a hybrid, while person B sees an acceptable GL-winged.
>
> I imagine this thread will continue in this circle regardless of Kodak
> gray scale values found in the current gull guides.
>
> Best,
> Amar
>
> Amar Ayyash
> www.anythinglarus.com  
>
> > On Jan 8, 2016, at 3:24 PM, Mike O'Keeffe  > wrote: 

> >
> > Hi,
> >
> >
> >
> > Interestingly the comments that I have received today seem to all
> > have a slant towards a hybrid origin and all referring to the
> > Pacific NW hybrid zone.  Having been looking at images from Japan
> > today however I think its safe to say the jury remains out as far as I am 
concerned. 

> > The 6-8 kodak scale primary pattern cutoff for GWG from the
> > reference guides (both Howell & Dunn and Olsen & Larsson) clearly
> > cannot possibly include the population of birds wintering in NE Asia.
> >
> >
> >
> > Here are a couple of examples from Asia which I suspect are in the
> > Kodak scale 8-9 range.
> >
> > http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Z3QHhMZC1GY/UuA3MSmQTII/AAAAAAAADI0/YVVTzM
> > Op
> > u5k/s1
> > 600/japan+birding+Glaucous-winged+Gull+adult+Hanasaki+harbour+Nemuro
> > +H
> > okkaid
> > o+january+2014+Amundsen+Biotope.jpg
> >
> > http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_TjsY98kGM4s/TN_HhqNWCUI/AAAAAAAAKjA/nlhBxt
> > 1B
> > aCs/s1
> > 600/_MG_1352.JPG
> >
> >
> >
> > And here are a couple that could be even darker, in the Kodak scale
> > 9-12 range perhaps, where I think the Irish bird sits.
> >
> > https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/5269088461/
> >
> > https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/6850236860/
> >
> > http://www.birdquest-tours.com/galleryImages/ai_1271238423232.jpg
> >
> >
> >
> > If based on the bird's smallish bill this bird it is said most
> > closely resembles an American Pacific Northwest GWG X HG (or Cook
> > Inlet Gull) here is a good match...
> >
> > http://gull-research.org/smithsonianus/images/howell/th/096.JPG
> >
> > ...but for comparison on the Japanese side of the water we have this
> GWG...
> >
> > http://www.stuartelsom.co.uk/assets/gallery/copyrightphotos/JP09-GWG
> > 01
> > -01-09
> > .JPG
> >
> >
> >
> > The Irish bird, whatever it is may have been cut from the same cloth
> > as this Danish bird which returned for consecutive winters between
> 2009-2012.
> >
> > http://gulldk.blogspot.ie/2013/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glauces
> > ce
> > ns.htm
> > l
> >
> > http://gulldk.blogspot.dk/2012/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glauces
> > ce
> > ns.htm
> > l
> >
> >
> >
> > Regards
> >
> >
> >
> > Mike O'Keeffe
> >
> > Ireland
> >
> > http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-
> > sc
> > ales-a
> > nd-gulls.html
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: Lethaby, Nick [mailto:nlethaby AT ti.com  ]
> > Sent: 07 January 2016 22:14
> > To: Mike O'Keeffe; BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU 
 

> > Subject: RE: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> >
> >
> >
> > The birds with darker wing-tips are probably mostly wintering in the
> > Aleutians/Bering Sea close to the breeding grounds or migrating down
> > to the Kuriles and Hokkaido, which isn't super far. GWGU is rare
> > south of Hokkaido (one sees just a few at Chosi, the famous gull
> > site N of Tokyo). So I would expect GWGU with darker wing-tips to
> > molt fairly early as there is no long migration to arrest molt for.
> > My impression is that GWGU also molts early on the US Pacific Coast.
> > At least one doesn't commonly see juvenile plumage well into
> > mid-late winter as in
> Thayer's and Herring.
> >
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> >
> > From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification [
> >  > 
mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU  ] 

> > On Behalf Of Mike O'Keeffe
> >
> > Sent: Thursday, January 07, 2016 12:57 PM
> >
> > To:  > 
BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU  

> >
> > Subject: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> >
> >
> >
> > Hi,
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Thanks everyone for your responses.  There is no doubt that
> > experienced observers develop an eye and a memory muscle for judging
> > subtle patterns and tones of commonly observed birds in the field.
> > But I doubt that this field skill is readily transferable to the
> > assessment of tones from photos.  It seems to me there are simply
> > too many variables at play.  Perfectly accurate image exposure is
> > difficult
> enough to achieve at the best of times.
> >
> > Exposure, lighting, dynamic range, lens focal length and relative
> > perspective among other parameters can all affect the capture and
> > appearance of subtle tones.  And those are just the ambient lighting
> > and exposure elements.  A bird's posture and angle relative to the
> > camera plays an equally important role.  So I often wonder are we
> > fooling ourselves when we try and gauge tonal levels so precisely
> > from photographs.  A comparative analysis like a grey scale tool
> > provides some basis for a more objective, comparative analysis than
> > one based
> solely on our visual perception.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > I estimate, based on a comparative analysis using the grey scale
> > tool, and backed up by what I saw of the Irish bird in the field
> > that the Irish GWG has a mantle grey scale value close to 6 and a
> > comparable primary pattern grey scale value of at least 10 and probably 11 
or 12. 

> >
> >
> >
> > http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-
> > sc
> > ales-a
> > nd-gulls.html
> >
> >
> >
> > 
> > https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/684841790776721408
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Obviously the outer primaries are not entirely new and should be at
> > least a couple of month's old.  Surprisingly P7-P9 seem a tad darker
> > than the still-growing P10 on the right wing.  P10 is missing
> > entirely on the left wing.  P10 moult seems a couple of months late
> > by standard references. Is this lateness ever encountered within it's 
normal N. 

> > American range?  Do Asian winterers moult P10 later than N. American
> > birds?  Or could it's lateness simply be a reflection of the type of
> > journey this bird may have undergone?  Is this an example of
> > arrested moult?  The ragged tips of its tail and secondaries and the
> > presence of what might be oil staining on its lesser and marginal
> > coverts, plus a broken P8 feather (right wing) all suggest this bird
> > has had a rough ride!  And it doesn't seem to be very dominant while
> > coming to bread at the pier either!  See photos of a nasty attack by
> > a young HG
> >
> > 
> > https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/683756672913899521
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > In the two main gull reference guides I found the following points
> > of interest.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Howell & Dunn
> >
> >
> >
> > "Adult has pale grey upperparts (Kodak 5-6) with medium grey
> > wingtips (6-8; averaging paler on Northern populations)...".
> >
> >
> >
> > Taken at face value, and assuming my analysis of grey scale is
> > roughly correct, this puts the Irish bird well outside the normal
> > published range at least for N. American GWG according to Howell and
> > Dunn.  But it's not clear how definitive this point is and from what
> > studies specifically it has been derived.  Was the study based solely on N.
> > American birds and from what part of the range?  Could there be an
> > element of selective or experimental bias trying to second-guess the
> > hybrid element in these data sets?  One thing is for sure - grey
> > scale
> > 6-8 represents a very small margin beyond concolorous with the
> > mantle
> shade - almost imperceptible in the field I should think.
> >
> > The Irish bird is certainly much darker than that.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Olsen & Larsson
> >
> >
> >
> > Plates on page 162 depict birds with primary tips very similar in
> > tone to the mantle and these are considered good GWGs.  I would have
> > little difficulty accepting these fall in the grey scale range 1-2
> > levels above mantle shade.  Plate 179 on page 163 depicts a bird
> > similar to or perhaps just marginally darker-tipped than the Irish
> > bird and it is described as "too dark for Glaucous-winged" but again
> > without a clear explanation as to how that assertion was arrived at.
> > In the body text..."birds with (primary pattern Kodak grey scale
> > level) 8-12 probably of hybrid origin".  It also mentions that for
> > Glaucous-winged X Western hybrids the "darker wing-tip" is "Kodak grey 
scale 10-12". 

> > This again seems to be in line with the Irish bird based on my
> > analysis.  But again what studies are these remarks based upon and
> > how
> was
> the hybrid cut-off line determined.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > In summary
> >
> >
> >
> > The overall consensus among those from N. America who have commented
> > it seems (though with a few people being cautious) is that despite
> > the bird's fairly dark primaries the bird is considered within "the
> > currently accepted range" for GWG in N. America.  With no other
> > obvious hybrid features it seems to be a good GWG, perhaps an even
> > better candidate from an Asian population perspective.  Still a
> > hybrid or back-cross cannot be totally eliminated.  Furthermore my
> > analysis if correct (primary grey scale 11-12) is at odd with both
> > the main published reference guides.  This suggests that the
> > perception of what is just about acceptable as a GWG among gull
> > experts in N.Am in terms of the Kodak scale at the moment is not in
> > line with the current standard reference guides, for whom a primary
> > pattern grey-scale of
> >
> > 6-8 is considered the limit.  It would be really useful to know what
> > specific studies the 6-8 limit is based upon and was there any
> > genetic analysis underpinning it.  It would also be useful to know
> > why birders consider the acceptable range of darkness to be greater
> > than what is currently published.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Regards
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Mike O'Keeffe
> >
> >
> >
> > Ireland
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > This email has been scanned by BullGuard antivirus protection.
> >
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> >
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Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
From: Alvaro Jaramillo <chucao AT COASTSIDE.NET>
Date: Sat, 9 Jan 2016 12:55:18 -0800
Dick, 
 What is the reference for the European Herring Gull originating from a hybrid 
swarm? That is new to me. 

Regards
Alvaro 

Alvaro Jaramillo
alvaro AT alvarosadventures.com
www.alvarosadventures.com


-----Original Message-----
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification 
[mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of Dick Newell 

Sent: Saturday, January 9, 2016 3:00 AM
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

Mike,
The European Herring Gull originated from some hybrid swarm in the past 
involving quite a few other 'species'. As a result, it is highly variable in 
appearance, but we are happy to call it one species. Doubtless the 
Glaucous-winged Gull is similar, it is just that some of the hybrid activity 
may be a bit more recent. How many generations back would you need to go to 
find a dark-winged ancestor of your gull, less than which you would not call it 
a Glaucous-winged Gull? 


Barak Obama is called the first black president, but he has a caucasian mother. 
I read somewhere that in the US anybody who is at least 1/32 (5 

generations) of African ancestor is classified as black. Although it is not 
politically incorrect to refer to the race of a person, all people are lumped. 


The situation with the large white-headed gulls is similar, but we do our 
darndest to split them. So do we not need a policy decision. If a bird is 95% 
OK (as with your gull), then have it! 


I realise that this would be the opposite policy than with black people, but 
since when was taxonomy logical? To a large extent it is driven by politics. 

Dick, Cambridge, UK

On 9 January 2016 at 07:42, Mike O'Keeffe  wrote:

> Hi and thanks for continuing the thread,
>
>
>
> My own personal approach to vagrancy would probably be more in line 
> with that of Alvaro and Wayne than with the more conservative, black 
> and white view of things.  There is merits in both stances.  I think 
> that traditionally the Irish Rarities Committee would have taken a 
> pragmatic approach when dealing with questions like Thayer’s Gull and 
> Elegant Tern for instance.  With the lack of strong evidence for 
> hybridization the tendency has been to give the benefit of the doubt.  
> Whether rightly or wrongly and whether the current committee will take 
> the approach to the Irish GWG no matter.  At the end of the day we may 
> never know what the right thing to do is in some cases.
>
>
>
> The recent increase in Pacific gulls reaching NW Europe, presumably 
> due to receding Arctic ice obviously raises the question of where in 
> the Pacific these birds are coming from.  Perhaps the species makeup 
> may provide a pointer. We have been getting Slaty-backed and Glaucous-winged 
(types). 

> Interestingly no yet confirmed or suspected Western, Mew or 
> Californian Gulls.
>
>
>
> Regards
>
>
>
> Mike O’Keeffe
>
> Ireland
>
>
>
>
>
> From: whoffman AT peak.org [mailto:whoffman AT peak.org]
> Sent: 09 January 2016 03:10
> To: Mike O'Keeffe
> Cc: BIRDWG01
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
>
>
> Re:  Irish Claucous-winged Gull
>
>
>
> Hi –
>
>
>
> I have been following this thread but have not had time to comment 
> until now.  In an earlier post the question was raised of research on 
> the variation in wingtip color in non-hybrid GW Gulls.
>
>
>
> I studied hybridization between GW and Western Gulls in the mid-1970s.  
> I found extensive hybridization, of course, but a strong tendency in 
> the middle of the zone for birds to be mated to individuals fairly 
> similiar to themselves on a hybrid index.  Thus, most darker 
> intermediates were paired with darker intermediates, paler with paler and so 
on. 

>
>
>
> More importantly, Douglas Bell did a more comprehensive study of the 
> zone of contact and hybridization in the 1990s, published in the late 
> 1990s, early 2000s, using both morphological and molecular variables.
>
>
>
> He also found extensive hybridization, of course.  He concluded (and I
> agree) that the zone of contact and hybridization is quite old, and 
> the frequency of hybridization has probably increased and decreased 
> through time, at least in part tracking abundance.  He considered the 
> current situation to be an upswing related to population increases for 
> both species that have resulted from increases in anthropogenic food sources.
>
>
>
> I take this to mean that while some of the "other" morphological 
> signal found in each population is the result of recent introgression, 
> some is a relict of ancient hybridization, persisting stably in the 
> recipient population.  I think that this ancient signal should not be 
> used to label birds as hybrids, because it presumably was 
> well-integrated into the genome of the recipient species.
>
>
>
> For a more recent, well-studied example of this, consider 
> Golden-winged and Blue-winged Warblers in eastern North America.  
> Briefly, Blue-wings are expanding their breeding range north and 
> upslope into that of Golden-wings, which are becoming rare.  When the 
> Blue-wings arrive, the two hybridize, but after relatively few 
> generations, Golden-wings disappear and the birds all look pretty much 
> like Blue-wings. However, molecular analyses do show evidence of mixed 
ancestry in these birds that look very much like "pure" 

> Blue-wings.  I would prefer to call these birds Blue-winged Warblers, 
> acknowledging the possibility of vestiges of a mixed gene pool, 
> because otherwise Blue-winged Warblers would be unidentifiable.
>
>
>
> Back to the gulls: My practice is to call birds that are intermediate 
> in multiple traits hybrids, but I consider birds that "deviate" from 
> species norms in only one trait to be within the within-species 
> variation.  Thus, I would call a bird with normal GW eye, eyering, and 
> bill colors but darker wingtips like the Irish bird a Glaucous-winged 
> Gull.  Further, since we apparently cannot attribute the wingtips of 
> the Japanese birds to a known zone of overlap and hybridization, the 
> likely explanation is that it is a relic of past history, stabilized in the 
Glaucous-winged Gull population. 

> Further, I suspect an east Asian origin for a stray to Ireland is 
> probably as likely as an origin on the Washington Coast.
>
>
>
> Hope this helps
>
>
>
> Wayne Hoffman
>
>
>
>
>
>   _____
>
> From: "Mike O'Keeffe" 
> To: "BIRDWG01" 
> Sent: Friday, January 8, 2016 3:55:16 PM
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
>
>
> Amar,
>
> Thanks for the frank response.  Obviously the grey scale element to 
> this interests me most - it was afterall the core subject of my blog post.
> Surely, its intriguing and of interest to this forum that the primary 
> texts appear to exclude the darker Asian GWGs by narrowing the 
> accepted primary grey scale range to 6-8 and, if what you say is 
> correct, so would many of the N. Am rarities committees?  Does this 
> not represent a potential blind spot.  While the hybrid mess may seem 
> like an insurmountable challenge all puzzles I like to believe can be 
cracked. 

>
> Regards
>
> Mike
>
>
>
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Amar Attach [mailto:amarayyash AT gmail.com]
> Sent: 08 January 2016 22:04
> To: Mike O'Keeffe
> Cc: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
> To put this identification conundrum in perspective, the Irish gull 
> would very likely be rejected as a pure Glaucous-winged by most 
> records committees in North America, if not all. This is where we're 
> at with this species:
> person A suspects a hybrid, while person B sees an acceptable GL-winged.
>
> I imagine this thread will continue in this circle regardless of Kodak 
> gray scale values found in the current gull guides.
>
> Best,
> Amar
>
> Amar Ayyash
> www.anythinglarus.com
>
> > On Jan 8, 2016, at 3:24 PM, Mike O'Keeffe  wrote:
> >
> > Hi,
> >
> >
> >
> > Interestingly the comments that I have received today seem to all 
> > have a slant towards a hybrid origin and all referring to the 
> > Pacific NW hybrid zone.  Having been looking at images from Japan 
> > today however I think its safe to say the jury remains out as far as I am 
concerned. 

> > The 6-8 kodak scale primary pattern cutoff for GWG from the 
> > reference guides (both Howell & Dunn and Olsen & Larsson) clearly 
> > cannot possibly include the population of birds wintering in NE Asia.
> >
> >
> >
> > Here are a couple of examples from Asia which I suspect are in the 
> > Kodak scale 8-9 range.
> >
> > http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Z3QHhMZC1GY/UuA3MSmQTII/AAAAAAAADI0/YVVTzM
> > Op
> > u5k/s1
> > 600/japan+birding+Glaucous-winged+Gull+adult+Hanasaki+harbour+Nemuro
> > +H
> > okkaid
> > o+january+2014+Amundsen+Biotope.jpg
> >
> > http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_TjsY98kGM4s/TN_HhqNWCUI/AAAAAAAAKjA/nlhBxt
> > 1B
> > aCs/s1
> > 600/_MG_1352.JPG
> >
> >
> >
> > And here are a couple that could be even darker, in the Kodak scale
> > 9-12 range perhaps, where I think the Irish bird sits.
> >
> > https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/5269088461/
> >
> > https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/6850236860/
> >
> > http://www.birdquest-tours.com/galleryImages/ai_1271238423232.jpg
> >
> >
> >
> > If based on the bird's smallish bill this bird it is said most 
> > closely resembles an American Pacific Northwest GWG X HG (or Cook 
> > Inlet Gull) here is a good match...
> >
> > http://gull-research.org/smithsonianus/images/howell/th/096.JPG
> >
> > ...but for comparison on the Japanese side of the water we have this
> GWG...
> >
> > http://www.stuartelsom.co.uk/assets/gallery/copyrightphotos/JP09-GWG
> > 01
> > -01-09
> > .JPG
> >
> >
> >
> > The Irish bird, whatever it is may have been cut from the same cloth 
> > as this Danish bird which returned for consecutive winters between
> 2009-2012.
> >
> > http://gulldk.blogspot.ie/2013/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glauces
> > ce
> > ns.htm
> > l
> >
> > http://gulldk.blogspot.dk/2012/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glauces
> > ce
> > ns.htm
> > l
> >
> >
> >
> > Regards
> >
> >
> >
> > Mike O'Keeffe
> >
> > Ireland
> >
> > http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-
> > sc
> > ales-a
> > nd-gulls.html
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: Lethaby, Nick [mailto:nlethaby AT ti.com]
> > Sent: 07 January 2016 22:14
> > To: Mike O'Keeffe; BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> > Subject: RE: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> >
> >
> >
> > The birds with darker wing-tips are probably mostly wintering in the 
> > Aleutians/Bering Sea close to the breeding grounds or migrating down 
> > to the Kuriles and Hokkaido, which isn't super far. GWGU is rare 
> > south of Hokkaido (one sees just a few at Chosi, the famous gull 
> > site N of Tokyo). So I would expect GWGU with darker wing-tips to 
> > molt fairly early as there is no long migration to arrest molt for. 
> > My impression is that GWGU also molts early on the US Pacific Coast. 
> > At least one doesn't commonly see juvenile plumage well into 
> > mid-late winter as in
> Thayer's and Herring.
> >
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> >
> > From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification [ 
> >  mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] 
> > On Behalf Of Mike O'Keeffe
> >
> > Sent: Thursday, January 07, 2016 12:57 PM
> >
> > To:   BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> >
> > Subject: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> >
> >
> >
> > Hi,
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Thanks everyone for your responses.  There is no doubt that 
> > experienced observers develop an eye and a memory muscle for judging 
> > subtle patterns and tones of commonly observed birds in the field.
> > But I doubt that this field skill is readily transferable to the 
> > assessment of tones from photos.  It seems to me there are simply 
> > too many variables at play.  Perfectly accurate image exposure is 
> > difficult
> enough to achieve at the best of times.
> >
> > Exposure, lighting, dynamic range, lens focal length and relative 
> > perspective among other parameters can all affect the capture and 
> > appearance of subtle tones.  And those are just the ambient lighting 
> > and exposure elements.  A bird's posture and angle relative to the 
> > camera plays an equally important role.  So I often wonder are we 
> > fooling ourselves when we try and gauge tonal levels so precisely 
> > from photographs.  A comparative analysis like a grey scale tool 
> > provides some basis for a more objective, comparative analysis than 
> > one based
> solely on our visual perception.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > I estimate, based on a comparative analysis using the grey scale 
> > tool, and backed up by what I saw of the Irish bird in the field 
> > that the Irish GWG has a mantle grey scale value close to 6 and a 
> > comparable primary pattern grey scale value of at least 10 and probably 11 
or 12. 

> >
> >
> >
> > http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-
> > sc
> > ales-a
> > nd-gulls.html
> >
> >
> >
> > 
> > https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/684841790776721408
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Obviously the outer primaries are not entirely new and should be at 
> > least a couple of month's old.  Surprisingly P7-P9 seem a tad darker 
> > than the still-growing P10 on the right wing.  P10 is missing 
> > entirely on the left wing.  P10 moult seems a couple of months late 
> > by standard references. Is this lateness ever encountered within it's 
normal N. 

> > American range?  Do Asian winterers moult P10 later than N. American 
> > birds?  Or could it's lateness simply be a reflection of the type of 
> > journey this bird may have undergone?  Is this an example of 
> > arrested moult?  The ragged tips of its tail and secondaries and the 
> > presence of what might be oil staining on its lesser and marginal 
> > coverts, plus a broken P8 feather (right wing) all suggest this bird 
> > has had a rough ride!  And it doesn't seem to be very dominant while 
> > coming to bread at the pier either!  See photos of a nasty attack by 
> > a young HG
> >
> > 
> > https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/683756672913899521
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > In the two main gull reference guides I found the following points 
> > of interest.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Howell & Dunn
> >
> >
> >
> > "Adult has pale grey upperparts (Kodak 5-6) with medium grey 
> > wingtips (6-8; averaging paler on Northern populations)...".
> >
> >
> >
> > Taken at face value, and assuming my analysis of grey scale is 
> > roughly correct, this puts the Irish bird well outside the normal 
> > published range at least for N. American GWG according to Howell and 
> > Dunn.  But it's not clear how definitive this point is and from what 
> > studies specifically it has been derived.  Was the study based solely on N.
> > American birds and from what part of the range?  Could there be an 
> > element of selective or experimental bias trying to second-guess the 
> > hybrid element in these data sets?  One thing is for sure - grey 
> > scale
> > 6-8 represents a very small margin beyond concolorous with the 
> > mantle
> shade - almost imperceptible in the field I should think.
> >
> > The Irish bird is certainly much darker than that.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Olsen & Larsson
> >
> >
> >
> > Plates on page 162 depict birds with primary tips very similar in 
> > tone to the mantle and these are considered good GWGs.  I would have 
> > little difficulty accepting these fall in the grey scale range 1-2 
> > levels above mantle shade.  Plate 179 on page 163 depicts a bird 
> > similar to or perhaps just marginally darker-tipped than the Irish 
> > bird and it is described as "too dark for Glaucous-winged" but again 
> > without a clear explanation as to how that assertion was arrived at.  
> > In the body text..."birds with (primary pattern Kodak grey scale 
> > level) 8-12 probably of hybrid origin".  It also mentions that for 
> > Glaucous-winged X Western hybrids the "darker wing-tip" is "Kodak grey 
scale 10-12". 

> > This again seems to be in line with the Irish bird based on my 
> > analysis.  But again what studies are these remarks based upon and 
> > how
> was
> the hybrid cut-off line determined.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > In summary
> >
> >
> >
> > The overall consensus among those from N. America who have commented 
> > it seems (though with a few people being cautious) is that despite 
> > the bird's fairly dark primaries the bird is considered within "the 
> > currently accepted range" for GWG in N. America.  With no other 
> > obvious hybrid features it seems to be a good GWG, perhaps an even 
> > better candidate from an Asian population perspective.  Still a 
> > hybrid or back-cross cannot be totally eliminated.  Furthermore my 
> > analysis if correct (primary grey scale 11-12) is at odd with both 
> > the main published reference guides.  This suggests that the 
> > perception of what is just about acceptable as a GWG among gull 
> > experts in N.Am in terms of the Kodak scale at the moment is not in 
> > line with the current standard reference guides, for whom a primary 
> > pattern grey-scale of
> >
> > 6-8 is considered the limit.  It would be really useful to know what 
> > specific studies the 6-8 limit is based upon and was there any 
> > genetic analysis underpinning it.  It would also be useful to know 
> > why birders consider the acceptable range of darkness to be greater 
> > than what is currently published.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Regards
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Mike O'Keeffe
> >
> >
> >
> > Ireland
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
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Subject: Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
From: Chris Corben <cjcorben AT HOARYBAT.COM>
Date: Sat, 9 Jan 2016 06:18:22 -0600
No-one ever seems to talk about getting genetic samples from vagrant 
gulls such as this. Lots of efforts to take great photos, but why isn't 
there an automatic move to make the effort to collect shed feathers or 
faeces samples? These are gulls - it shouldn't be that difficult if the 
effort was made.

It's not like a genetic sample is going to solve anything in the short 
term, but it is easy to preserve such material which can become a 
permanent record for future analysis. If the identity matters, why not 
make the effort?

Chris.

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
From: Dick Newell <dick.newell AT GMAIL.COM>
Date: Sat, 9 Jan 2016 10:59:31 +0000
Mike,
The European Herring Gull originated from some hybrid swarm in the past
involving quite a few other 'species'. As a result, it is highly variable
in appearance, but we are happy to call it one species. Doubtless the
Glaucous-winged Gull is similar, it is just that some of the hybrid
activity may be a bit more recent. How many generations back would you need
to go to find a dark-winged ancestor of your gull, less than which you
would not call it a Glaucous-winged Gull?

Barak Obama is called the first black president, but he has a caucasian
mother. I read somewhere that in the US anybody who is at least 1/32 (5
generations) of African ancestor is classified as black. Although it is not
politically incorrect to refer to the race of a person, all people are
lumped.

The situation with the large white-headed gulls is similar, but we do our
darndest to split them. So do we not need a policy decision. If a bird is
95% OK (as with your gull), then have it!

I realise that this would be the opposite policy than with black people,
but since when was taxonomy logical? To a large extent it is driven by
politics.
Dick, Cambridge, UK

On 9 January 2016 at 07:42, Mike O'Keeffe  wrote:

> Hi and thanks for continuing the thread,
>
>
>
> My own personal approach to vagrancy would probably be more in line with
> that of Alvaro and Wayne than with the more conservative, black and white
> view of things.  There is merits in both stances.  I think that
> traditionally the Irish Rarities Committee would have taken a pragmatic
> approach when dealing with questions like Thayer’s Gull and Elegant Tern
> for instance.  With the lack of strong evidence for hybridization the
> tendency has been to give the benefit of the doubt.  Whether rightly or
> wrongly and whether the current committee will take the approach to the
> Irish GWG no matter.  At the end of the day we may never know what the
> right thing to do is in some cases.
>
>
>
> The recent increase in Pacific gulls reaching NW Europe, presumably due to
> receding Arctic ice obviously raises the question of where in the Pacific
> these birds are coming from.  Perhaps the species makeup may provide a
> pointer.  We have been getting Slaty-backed and Glaucous-winged (types).
> Interestingly no yet confirmed or suspected Western, Mew or Californian
> Gulls.
>
>
>
> Regards
>
>
>
> Mike O’Keeffe
>
> Ireland
>
>
>
>
>
> From: whoffman AT peak.org [mailto:whoffman AT peak.org]
> Sent: 09 January 2016 03:10
> To: Mike O'Keeffe
> Cc: BIRDWG01
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
>
>
> Re:  Irish Claucous-winged Gull
>
>
>
> Hi –
>
>
>
> I have been following this thread but have not had time to comment until
> now.  In an earlier post the question was raised of research on the
> variation in wingtip color in non-hybrid GW Gulls.
>
>
>
> I studied hybridization between GW and Western Gulls in the mid-1970s.  I
> found extensive hybridization, of course, but a strong tendency in the
> middle of the zone for birds to be mated to individuals fairly similiar to
> themselves on a hybrid index.  Thus, most darker intermediates were paired
> with darker intermediates, paler with paler and so on.
>
>
>
> More importantly, Douglas Bell did a more comprehensive study of the zone
> of contact and hybridization in the 1990s, published in the late 1990s,
> early 2000s, using both morphological and molecular variables.
>
>
>
> He also found extensive hybridization, of course.  He concluded (and I
> agree) that the zone of contact and hybridization is quite old, and the
> frequency of hybridization has probably increased and decreased through
> time, at least in part tracking abundance.  He considered the current
> situation to be an upswing related to population increases for both species
> that have resulted from increases in anthropogenic food sources.
>
>
>
> I take this to mean that while some of the "other" morphological signal
> found in each population is the result of recent introgression, some is a
> relict of ancient hybridization, persisting stably in the recipient
> population.  I think that this ancient signal should not be used to label
> birds as hybrids, because it presumably was well-integrated into the genome
> of the recipient species.
>
>
>
> For a more recent, well-studied example of this, consider Golden-winged
> and Blue-winged Warblers in eastern North America.  Briefly, Blue-wings are
> expanding their breeding range north and upslope into that of Golden-wings,
> which are becoming rare.  When the Blue-wings arrive, the two hybridize,
> but after relatively few generations, Golden-wings disappear and the birds
> all look pretty much like Blue-wings.  However, molecular analyses do show
> evidence of mixed ancestry in these birds that look very much like "pure"
> Blue-wings.  I would prefer to call these birds Blue-winged Warblers,
> acknowledging the possibility of vestiges of a mixed gene pool, because
> otherwise Blue-winged Warblers would be unidentifiable.
>
>
>
> Back to the gulls: My practice is to call birds that are intermediate in
> multiple traits hybrids, but I consider birds that "deviate" from species
> norms in only one trait to be within the within-species variation.  Thus, I
> would call a bird with normal GW eye, eyering, and bill colors but darker
> wingtips like the Irish bird a Glaucous-winged Gull.  Further, since we
> apparently cannot attribute the wingtips of the Japanese birds to a known
> zone of overlap and hybridization, the likely explanation is that it is a
> relic of past history, stabilized in the Glaucous-winged Gull population.
> Further, I suspect an east Asian origin for a stray to Ireland is probably
> as likely as an origin on the Washington Coast.
>
>
>
> Hope this helps
>
>
>
> Wayne Hoffman
>
>
>
>
>
>   _____
>
> From: "Mike O'Keeffe" 
> To: "BIRDWG01" 
> Sent: Friday, January 8, 2016 3:55:16 PM
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
>
>
> Amar,
>
> Thanks for the frank response.  Obviously the grey scale element to this
> interests me most - it was afterall the core subject of my blog post.
> Surely, its intriguing and of interest to this forum that the primary texts
> appear to exclude the darker Asian GWGs by narrowing the accepted primary
> grey scale range to 6-8 and, if what you say is correct, so would many of
> the N. Am rarities committees?  Does this not represent a potential blind
> spot.  While the hybrid mess may seem like an insurmountable challenge all
> puzzles I like to believe can be cracked.
>
> Regards
>
> Mike
>
>
>
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Amar Attach [mailto:amarayyash AT gmail.com]
> Sent: 08 January 2016 22:04
> To: Mike O'Keeffe
> Cc: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
> To put this identification conundrum in perspective, the Irish gull would
> very likely be rejected as a pure Glaucous-winged by most records
> committees
> in North America, if not all. This is where we're at with this species:
> person A suspects a hybrid, while person B sees an acceptable GL-winged.
>
> I imagine this thread will continue in this circle regardless of Kodak gray
> scale values found in the current gull guides.
>
> Best,
> Amar
>
> Amar Ayyash
> www.anythinglarus.com
>
> > On Jan 8, 2016, at 3:24 PM, Mike O'Keeffe  wrote:
> >
> > Hi,
> >
> >
> >
> > Interestingly the comments that I have received today seem to all have
> > a slant towards a hybrid origin and all referring to the Pacific NW
> > hybrid zone.  Having been looking at images from Japan today however I
> > think its safe to say the jury remains out as far as I am concerned.
> > The 6-8 kodak scale primary pattern cutoff for GWG from the reference
> > guides (both Howell & Dunn and Olsen & Larsson) clearly cannot
> > possibly include the population of birds wintering in NE Asia.
> >
> >
> >
> > Here are a couple of examples from Asia which I suspect are in the
> > Kodak scale 8-9 range.
> >
> > http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Z3QHhMZC1GY/UuA3MSmQTII/AAAAAAAADI0/YVVTzMOp
> > u5k/s1
> > 600/japan+birding+Glaucous-winged+Gull+adult+Hanasaki+harbour+Nemuro+H
> > okkaid
> > o+january+2014+Amundsen+Biotope.jpg
> >
> > http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_TjsY98kGM4s/TN_HhqNWCUI/AAAAAAAAKjA/nlhBxt1B
> > aCs/s1
> > 600/_MG_1352.JPG
> >
> >
> >
> > And here are a couple that could be even darker, in the Kodak scale
> > 9-12 range perhaps, where I think the Irish bird sits.
> >
> > https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/5269088461/
> >
> > https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/6850236860/
> >
> > http://www.birdquest-tours.com/galleryImages/ai_1271238423232.jpg
> >
> >
> >
> > If based on the bird's smallish bill this bird it is said most closely
> > resembles an American Pacific Northwest GWG X HG (or Cook Inlet Gull)
> > here is a good match...
> >
> > http://gull-research.org/smithsonianus/images/howell/th/096.JPG
> >
> > ...but for comparison on the Japanese side of the water we have this
> GWG...
> >
> > http://www.stuartelsom.co.uk/assets/gallery/copyrightphotos/JP09-GWG01
> > -01-09
> > .JPG
> >
> >
> >
> > The Irish bird, whatever it is may have been cut from the same cloth
> > as this Danish bird which returned for consecutive winters between
> 2009-2012.
> >
> > http://gulldk.blogspot.ie/2013/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glaucesce
> > ns.htm
> > l
> >
> > http://gulldk.blogspot.dk/2012/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glaucesce
> > ns.htm
> > l
> >
> >
> >
> > Regards
> >
> >
> >
> > Mike O'Keeffe
> >
> > Ireland
> >
> > http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-sc
> > ales-a
> > nd-gulls.html
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: Lethaby, Nick [mailto:nlethaby AT ti.com]
> > Sent: 07 January 2016 22:14
> > To: Mike O'Keeffe; BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> > Subject: RE: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> >
> >
> >
> > The birds with darker wing-tips are probably mostly wintering in the
> > Aleutians/Bering Sea close to the breeding grounds or migrating down
> > to the Kuriles and Hokkaido, which isn't super far. GWGU is rare south
> > of Hokkaido (one sees just a few at Chosi, the famous gull site N of
> > Tokyo). So I would expect GWGU with darker wing-tips to molt fairly
> > early as there is no long migration to arrest molt for. My impression
> > is that GWGU also molts early on the US Pacific Coast. At least one
> > doesn't commonly see juvenile plumage well into mid-late winter as in
> Thayer's and Herring.
> >
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> >
> > From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification [
> >  mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU]
> > On Behalf Of Mike O'Keeffe
> >
> > Sent: Thursday, January 07, 2016 12:57 PM
> >
> > To:   BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> >
> > Subject: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> >
> >
> >
> > Hi,
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Thanks everyone for your responses.  There is no doubt that
> > experienced observers develop an eye and a memory muscle for judging
> > subtle patterns and tones of commonly observed birds in the field.
> > But I doubt that this field skill is readily transferable to the
> > assessment of tones from photos.  It seems to me there are simply too
> > many variables at play.  Perfectly accurate image exposure is difficult
> enough to achieve at the best of times.
> >
> > Exposure, lighting, dynamic range, lens focal length and relative
> > perspective among other parameters can all affect the capture and
> > appearance of subtle tones.  And those are just the ambient lighting
> > and exposure elements.  A bird's posture and angle relative to the
> > camera plays an equally important role.  So I often wonder are we
> > fooling ourselves when we try and gauge tonal levels so precisely from
> > photographs.  A comparative analysis like a grey scale tool provides
> > some basis for a more objective, comparative analysis than one based
> solely on our visual perception.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > I estimate, based on a comparative analysis using the grey scale tool,
> > and backed up by what I saw of the Irish bird in the field that the
> > Irish GWG has a mantle grey scale value close to 6 and a comparable
> > primary pattern grey scale value of at least 10 and probably 11 or 12.
> >
> >
> >
> > http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-sc
> > ales-a
> > nd-gulls.html
> >
> >
> >
> > 
> > https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/684841790776721408
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Obviously the outer primaries are not entirely new and should be at
> > least a couple of month's old.  Surprisingly P7-P9 seem a tad darker
> > than the still-growing P10 on the right wing.  P10 is missing entirely
> > on the left wing.  P10 moult seems a couple of months late by standard
> > references.  Is this lateness ever encountered within it's normal N.
> > American range?  Do Asian winterers moult P10 later than N. American
> > birds?  Or could it's lateness simply be a reflection of the type of
> > journey this bird may have undergone?  Is this an example of arrested
> > moult?  The ragged tips of its tail and secondaries and the presence
> > of what might be oil staining on its lesser and marginal coverts, plus
> > a broken P8 feather (right wing) all suggest this bird has had a rough
> > ride!  And it doesn't seem to be very dominant while coming to bread
> > at the pier either!  See photos of a nasty attack by a young HG
> >
> > 
> > https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/683756672913899521
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > In the two main gull reference guides I found the following points of
> > interest.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Howell & Dunn
> >
> >
> >
> > "Adult has pale grey upperparts (Kodak 5-6) with medium grey wingtips
> > (6-8; averaging paler on Northern populations)...".
> >
> >
> >
> > Taken at face value, and assuming my analysis of grey scale is roughly
> > correct, this puts the Irish bird well outside the normal published
> > range at least for N. American GWG according to Howell and Dunn.  But
> > it's not clear how definitive this point is and from what studies
> > specifically it has been derived.  Was the study based solely on N.
> > American birds and from what part of the range?  Could there be an
> > element of selective or experimental bias trying to second-guess the
> > hybrid element in these data sets?  One thing is for sure - grey scale
> > 6-8 represents a very small margin beyond concolorous with the mantle
> shade - almost imperceptible in the field I should think.
> >
> > The Irish bird is certainly much darker than that.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Olsen & Larsson
> >
> >
> >
> > Plates on page 162 depict birds with primary tips very similar in tone
> > to the mantle and these are considered good GWGs.  I would have little
> > difficulty accepting these fall in the grey scale range 1-2 levels
> > above mantle shade.  Plate 179 on page 163 depicts a bird similar to
> > or perhaps just marginally darker-tipped than the Irish bird and it is
> > described as "too dark for Glaucous-winged" but again without a clear
> > explanation as to how that assertion was arrived at.  In the body
> > text..."birds with (primary pattern Kodak grey scale level) 8-12
> > probably of hybrid origin".  It also mentions that for Glaucous-winged
> > X Western hybrids the "darker wing-tip" is "Kodak grey scale 10-12".
> > This again seems to be in line with the Irish bird based on my
> > analysis.  But again what studies are these remarks based upon and how
> was
> the hybrid cut-off line determined.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > In summary
> >
> >
> >
> > The overall consensus among those from N. America who have commented
> > it seems (though with a few people being cautious) is that despite the
> > bird's fairly dark primaries the bird is considered within "the
> > currently accepted range" for GWG in N. America.  With no other
> > obvious hybrid features it seems to be a good GWG, perhaps an even
> > better candidate from an Asian population perspective.  Still a hybrid
> > or back-cross cannot be totally eliminated.  Furthermore my analysis
> > if correct (primary grey scale 11-12) is at odd with both the main
> > published reference guides.  This suggests that the perception of what
> > is just about acceptable as a GWG among gull experts in N.Am in terms
> > of the Kodak scale at the moment is not in line with the current
> > standard reference guides, for whom a primary pattern grey-scale of
> >
> > 6-8 is considered the limit.  It would be really useful to know what
> > specific studies the 6-8 limit is based upon and was there any genetic
> > analysis underpinning it.  It would also be useful to know why birders
> > consider the acceptable range of darkness to be greater than what is
> > currently published.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Regards
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Mike O'Keeffe
> >
> >
> >
> > Ireland
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > This email has been scanned by BullGuard antivirus protection.
> >
> > For more info visit   www.bullguard.com
> >
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> &buyaffilia
> > te=smt
> >
> > p&url=/>
> >
> >
> >
> > Archives:  
> > http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
> >
> >
> > This email has been scanned by BullGuard antivirus protection.
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>
>
> This email has been scanned by BullGuard antivirus protection.
> For more info visit www.bullguard.com
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> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
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> This email has been scanned by BullGuard antivirus protection.
> For more info visit www.bullguard.com <
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> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
>

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
From: "Mike O'Keeffe" <okeeffeml AT EIRCOM.NET>
Date: Sat, 9 Jan 2016 07:42:28 +0000
Hi and thanks for continuing the thread,

 

My own personal approach to vagrancy would probably be more in line with that 
of Alvaro and Wayne than with the more conservative, black and white view of 
things. There is merits in both stances. I think that traditionally the Irish 
Rarities Committee would have taken a pragmatic approach when dealing with 
questions like Thayer’s Gull and Elegant Tern for instance. With the lack of 
strong evidence for hybridization the tendency has been to give the benefit of 
the doubt. Whether rightly or wrongly and whether the current committee will 
take the approach to the Irish GWG no matter. At the end of the day we may 
never know what the right thing to do is in some cases. 


 

The recent increase in Pacific gulls reaching NW Europe, presumably due to 
receding Arctic ice obviously raises the question of where in the Pacific these 
birds are coming from. Perhaps the species makeup may provide a pointer. We 
have been getting Slaty-backed and Glaucous-winged (types). Interestingly no 
yet confirmed or suspected Western, Mew or Californian Gulls. 


 

Regards

 

Mike O’Keeffe

Ireland

 

 

From: whoffman AT peak.org [mailto:whoffman AT peak.org] 
Sent: 09 January 2016 03:10
To: Mike O'Keeffe
Cc: BIRDWG01
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

 

Re:  Irish Claucous-winged Gull

 

Hi –

 

I have been following this thread but have not had time to comment until now. 
In an earlier post the question was raised of research on the variation in 
wingtip color in non-hybrid GW Gulls. 


 

I studied hybridization between GW and Western Gulls in the mid-1970s. I found 
extensive hybridization, of course, but a strong tendency in the middle of the 
zone for birds to be mated to individuals fairly similiar to themselves on a 
hybrid index. Thus, most darker intermediates were paired with darker 
intermediates, paler with paler and so on. 


 

More importantly, Douglas Bell did a more comprehensive study of the zone of 
contact and hybridization in the 1990s, published in the late 1990s, early 
2000s, using both morphological and molecular variables. 


 

He also found extensive hybridization, of course. He concluded (and I agree) 
that the zone of contact and hybridization is quite old, and the frequency of 
hybridization has probably increased and decreased through time, at least in 
part tracking abundance. He considered the current situation to be an upswing 
related to population increases for both species that have resulted from 
increases in anthropogenic food sources. 


 

I take this to mean that while some of the "other" morphological signal found 
in each population is the result of recent introgression, some is a relict of 
ancient hybridization, persisting stably in the recipient population. I think 
that this ancient signal should not be used to label birds as hybrids, because 
it presumably was well-integrated into the genome of the recipient species. 


 

For a more recent, well-studied example of this, consider Golden-winged and 
Blue-winged Warblers in eastern North America. Briefly, Blue-wings are 
expanding their breeding range north and upslope into that of Golden-wings, 
which are becoming rare. When the Blue-wings arrive, the two hybridize, but 
after relatively few generations, Golden-wings disappear and the birds all look 
pretty much like Blue-wings. However, molecular analyses do show evidence of 
mixed ancestry in these birds that look very much like "pure" Blue-wings. I 
would prefer to call these birds Blue-winged Warblers, acknowledging the 
possibility of vestiges of a mixed gene pool, because otherwise Blue-winged 
Warblers would be unidentifiable. 


 

Back to the gulls: My practice is to call birds that are intermediate in 
multiple traits hybrids, but I consider birds that "deviate" from species norms 
in only one trait to be within the within-species variation. Thus, I would call 
a bird with normal GW eye, eyering, and bill colors but darker wingtips like 
the Irish bird a Glaucous-winged Gull. Further, since we apparently cannot 
attribute the wingtips of the Japanese birds to a known zone of overlap and 
hybridization, the likely explanation is that it is a relic of past history, 
stabilized in the Glaucous-winged Gull population. Further, I suspect an east 
Asian origin for a stray to Ireland is probably as likely as an origin on the 
Washington Coast. 


 

Hope this helps

 

Wayne Hoffman

 

 

  _____  

From: "Mike O'Keeffe" 
To: "BIRDWG01" 
Sent: Friday, January 8, 2016 3:55:16 PM
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

 

Amar,

Thanks for the frank response.  Obviously the grey scale element to this
interests me most - it was afterall the core subject of my blog post.
Surely, its intriguing and of interest to this forum that the primary texts
appear to exclude the darker Asian GWGs by narrowing the accepted primary
grey scale range to 6-8 and, if what you say is correct, so would many of
the N. Am rarities committees?  Does this not represent a potential blind
spot.  While the hybrid mess may seem like an insurmountable challenge all
puzzles I like to believe can be cracked.

Regards

Mike





-----Original Message-----
From: Amar Attach [mailto:amarayyash AT gmail.com] 
Sent: 08 January 2016 22:04
To: Mike O'Keeffe
Cc: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

To put this identification conundrum in perspective, the Irish gull would
very likely be rejected as a pure Glaucous-winged by most records committees
in North America, if not all. This is where we're at with this species:
person A suspects a hybrid, while person B sees an acceptable GL-winged. 

I imagine this thread will continue in this circle regardless of Kodak gray
scale values found in the current gull guides.

Best,
Amar

Amar Ayyash
www.anythinglarus.com

> On Jan 8, 2016, at 3:24 PM, Mike O'Keeffe  wrote:
> 
> Hi,
> 
> 
> 
> Interestingly the comments that I have received today seem to all have 
> a slant towards a hybrid origin and all referring to the Pacific NW 
> hybrid zone.  Having been looking at images from Japan today however I 
> think its safe to say the jury remains out as far as I am concerned.  
> The 6-8 kodak scale primary pattern cutoff for GWG from the reference 
> guides (both Howell & Dunn and Olsen & Larsson) clearly cannot 
> possibly include the population of birds wintering in NE Asia.
> 
> 
> 
> Here are a couple of examples from Asia which I suspect are in the 
> Kodak scale 8-9 range.
> 
> http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Z3QHhMZC1GY/UuA3MSmQTII/AAAAAAAADI0/YVVTzMOp
> u5k/s1 
> 600/japan+birding+Glaucous-winged+Gull+adult+Hanasaki+harbour+Nemuro+H
> okkaid
> o+january+2014+Amundsen+Biotope.jpg
> 
> http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_TjsY98kGM4s/TN_HhqNWCUI/AAAAAAAAKjA/nlhBxt1B
> aCs/s1
> 600/_MG_1352.JPG
> 
> 
> 
> And here are a couple that could be even darker, in the Kodak scale 
> 9-12 range perhaps, where I think the Irish bird sits.
> 
> https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/5269088461/
> 
> https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/6850236860/
> 
> http://www.birdquest-tours.com/galleryImages/ai_1271238423232.jpg
> 
> 
> 
> If based on the bird's smallish bill this bird it is said most closely 
> resembles an American Pacific Northwest GWG X HG (or Cook Inlet Gull) 
> here is a good match...
> 
> http://gull-research.org/smithsonianus/images/howell/th/096.JPG
> 
> ...but for comparison on the Japanese side of the water we have this
GWG...
> 
> http://www.stuartelsom.co.uk/assets/gallery/copyrightphotos/JP09-GWG01
> -01-09
> .JPG
> 
> 
> 
> The Irish bird, whatever it is may have been cut from the same cloth 
> as this Danish bird which returned for consecutive winters between
2009-2012.
> 
> http://gulldk.blogspot.ie/2013/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glaucesce
> ns.htm
> l
> 
> http://gulldk.blogspot.dk/2012/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glaucesce
> ns.htm
> l
> 
> 
> 
> Regards
> 
> 
> 
> Mike O'Keeffe
> 
> Ireland
> 
> http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-sc
> ales-a
> nd-gulls.html
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Lethaby, Nick [mailto:nlethaby AT ti.com]
> Sent: 07 January 2016 22:14
> To: Mike O'Keeffe; BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> Subject: RE: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> 
> 
> 
> The birds with darker wing-tips are probably mostly wintering in the 
> Aleutians/Bering Sea close to the breeding grounds or migrating down 
> to the Kuriles and Hokkaido, which isn't super far. GWGU is rare south 
> of Hokkaido (one sees just a few at Chosi, the famous gull site N of 
> Tokyo). So I would expect GWGU with darker wing-tips to molt fairly 
> early as there is no long migration to arrest molt for. My impression 
> is that GWGU also molts early on the US Pacific Coast. At least one 
> doesn't commonly see juvenile plumage well into mid-late winter as in
Thayer's and Herring.
> 
> 
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> 
> From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification [ 
>  mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] 
> On Behalf Of Mike O'Keeffe
> 
> Sent: Thursday, January 07, 2016 12:57 PM
> 
> To:   BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> 
> Subject: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> 
> 
> 
> Hi,
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Thanks everyone for your responses.  There is no doubt that 
> experienced observers develop an eye and a memory muscle for judging 
> subtle patterns and tones of commonly observed birds in the field.  
> But I doubt that this field skill is readily transferable to the 
> assessment of tones from photos.  It seems to me there are simply too 
> many variables at play.  Perfectly accurate image exposure is difficult
enough to achieve at the best of times.
> 
> Exposure, lighting, dynamic range, lens focal length and relative 
> perspective among other parameters can all affect the capture and 
> appearance of subtle tones.  And those are just the ambient lighting 
> and exposure elements.  A bird's posture and angle relative to the 
> camera plays an equally important role.  So I often wonder are we 
> fooling ourselves when we try and gauge tonal levels so precisely from 
> photographs.  A comparative analysis like a grey scale tool provides 
> some basis for a more objective, comparative analysis than one based
solely on our visual perception.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> I estimate, based on a comparative analysis using the grey scale tool, 
> and backed up by what I saw of the Irish bird in the field that the 
> Irish GWG has a mantle grey scale value close to 6 and a comparable 
> primary pattern grey scale value of at least 10 and probably 11 or 12.
> 
> 
> 
> http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-sc
> ales-a
> nd-gulls.html
> 
> 
> 
> 
> https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/684841790776721408
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Obviously the outer primaries are not entirely new and should be at 
> least a couple of month's old.  Surprisingly P7-P9 seem a tad darker 
> than the still-growing P10 on the right wing.  P10 is missing entirely 
> on the left wing.  P10 moult seems a couple of months late by standard 
> references.  Is this lateness ever encountered within it's normal N. 
> American range?  Do Asian winterers moult P10 later than N. American 
> birds?  Or could it's lateness simply be a reflection of the type of 
> journey this bird may have undergone?  Is this an example of arrested 
> moult?  The ragged tips of its tail and secondaries and the presence 
> of what might be oil staining on its lesser and marginal coverts, plus 
> a broken P8 feather (right wing) all suggest this bird has had a rough 
> ride!  And it doesn't seem to be very dominant while coming to bread 
> at the pier either!  See photos of a nasty attack by a young HG
> 
> 
> https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/683756672913899521
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> In the two main gull reference guides I found the following points of 
> interest.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Howell & Dunn
> 
> 
> 
> "Adult has pale grey upperparts (Kodak 5-6) with medium grey wingtips 
> (6-8; averaging paler on Northern populations)...".
> 
> 
> 
> Taken at face value, and assuming my analysis of grey scale is roughly 
> correct, this puts the Irish bird well outside the normal published 
> range at least for N. American GWG according to Howell and Dunn.  But 
> it's not clear how definitive this point is and from what studies 
> specifically it has been derived.  Was the study based solely on N. 
> American birds and from what part of the range?  Could there be an 
> element of selective or experimental bias trying to second-guess the 
> hybrid element in these data sets?  One thing is for sure - grey scale 
> 6-8 represents a very small margin beyond concolorous with the mantle
shade - almost imperceptible in the field I should think.
> 
> The Irish bird is certainly much darker than that.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Olsen & Larsson
> 
> 
> 
> Plates on page 162 depict birds with primary tips very similar in tone 
> to the mantle and these are considered good GWGs.  I would have little 
> difficulty accepting these fall in the grey scale range 1-2 levels 
> above mantle shade.  Plate 179 on page 163 depicts a bird similar to 
> or perhaps just marginally darker-tipped than the Irish bird and it is 
> described as "too dark for Glaucous-winged" but again without a clear 
> explanation as to how that assertion was arrived at.  In the body 
> text..."birds with (primary pattern Kodak grey scale level) 8-12 
> probably of hybrid origin".  It also mentions that for Glaucous-winged 
> X Western hybrids the "darker wing-tip" is "Kodak grey scale 10-12".  
> This again seems to be in line with the Irish bird based on my 
> analysis.  But again what studies are these remarks based upon and how was
the hybrid cut-off line determined.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> In summary
> 
> 
> 
> The overall consensus among those from N. America who have commented 
> it seems (though with a few people being cautious) is that despite the 
> bird's fairly dark primaries the bird is considered within "the 
> currently accepted range" for GWG in N. America.  With no other 
> obvious hybrid features it seems to be a good GWG, perhaps an even 
> better candidate from an Asian population perspective.  Still a hybrid 
> or back-cross cannot be totally eliminated.  Furthermore my analysis 
> if correct (primary grey scale 11-12) is at odd with both the main 
> published reference guides.  This suggests that the perception of what 
> is just about acceptable as a GWG among gull experts in N.Am in terms 
> of the Kodak scale at the moment is not in line with the current 
> standard reference guides, for whom a primary pattern grey-scale of
> 
> 6-8 is considered the limit.  It would be really useful to know what 
> specific studies the 6-8 limit is based upon and was there any genetic 
> analysis underpinning it.  It would also be useful to know why birders 
> consider the acceptable range of darkness to be greater than what is 
> currently published.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Regards
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Mike O'Keeffe
> 
> 
> 
> Ireland
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> This email has been scanned by BullGuard antivirus protection.
> 
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> http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
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Subject: Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
From: whoffman AT PEAK.ORG
Date: Fri, 8 Jan 2016 19:10:19 -0800
Re: Irish Claucous-winged Gull 



Hi – 




I have been following this thread but have not had time to comment until now. 
In an earlier post the question was raised of research on the variation in 
wingtip color in non-hybrid GW Gulls. 




I studied hybridization between GW and Western Gulls in the mid-1970s. I found 
extensive hybridization, of course, but a strong tendency in the middle of the 
zone for birds to be mated to individuals fairly similiar to themselves on a 
hybrid index. Thus, most darker intermediates were paired with darker 
intermediates, paler with paler and so on. 





More importantly, Douglas Bell did a more comprehensive study of the zone of 
contact and hybridization in the 1990s, published in the late 1990s, early 
2000s, using both morphological and molecular variables. 





He also found extensive hybridization, of course. He concluded (and I agree) 
that the zone of contact and hybridization is quite old, and the frequency of 
hybridization has probably increased and decreased through time, at least in 
part tracking abundance. He considered the current situation to be an upswing 
related to population increases for both species that have resulted from 
increases in anthropogenic food sources. 





I take this to mean that while some of the "other" morphological signal found 
in each population is the result of recent introgression, some is a relict of 
ancient hybridization, persisting stably in the recipient population. I think 
that this ancient signal should not be used to label birds as hybrids, because 
it presumably was well-integrated into the genome of the recipient species. 





For a more recent, well-studied example of this, consider Golden-winged and 
Blue-winged Warblers in eastern North America. Briefly, Blue-wings are 
expanding their breeding range north and upslope into that of Golden-wings, 
which are becoming rare. When the Blue-wings arrive, the two hybridize, but 
after relatively few generations, Golden-wings disappear and the birds all look 
pretty much like Blue-wings. However, molecular analyses do show evidence of 
mixed ancestry in these birds that look very much like "pure" Blue-wings. I 
would prefer to call these birds Blue-winged Warblers, acknowledging the 
possibility of vestiges of a mixed gene pool, because otherwise Blue-winged 
Warblers would be unidentifiable. 





Back to the gulls: My practice is to call birds that are intermediate in 
multiple traits hybrids, but I consider birds that "deviate" from species norms 
in only one trait to be within the within-species variation. Thus, I would call 
a bird with normal GW eye, eyering, and bill colors but darker wingtips like 
the Irish bird a Glaucous-winged Gull. Further, since we apparently cannot 
attribute the wingtips of the Japanese birds to a known zone of overlap and 
hybridization, the likely explanation is that it is a relic of past history, 
stabilized in the Glaucous-winged Gull population. Further, I suspect an east 
Asian origin for a stray to Ireland is probably as likely as an origin on the 
Washington Coast. 





Hope this helps 




Wayne Hoffman 




From: "Mike O'Keeffe"  
To: "BIRDWG01"  
Sent: Friday, January 8, 2016 3:55:16 PM 
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull 

Amar, 

Thanks for the frank response. Obviously the grey scale element to this 
interests me most - it was afterall the core subject of my blog post. 
Surely, its intriguing and of interest to this forum that the primary texts 
appear to exclude the darker Asian GWGs by narrowing the accepted primary 
grey scale range to 6-8 and, if what you say is correct, so would many of 
the N. Am rarities committees? Does this not represent a potential blind 
spot. While the hybrid mess may seem like an insurmountable challenge all 
puzzles I like to believe can be cracked. 

Regards 

Mike 





-----Original Message----- 
From: Amar Attach [mailto:amarayyash AT gmail.com] 
Sent: 08 January 2016 22:04 
To: Mike O'Keeffe 
Cc: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU 
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull 

To put this identification conundrum in perspective, the Irish gull would 
very likely be rejected as a pure Glaucous-winged by most records committees 
in North America, if not all. This is where we're at with this species: 
person A suspects a hybrid, while person B sees an acceptable GL-winged. 

I imagine this thread will continue in this circle regardless of Kodak gray 
scale values found in the current gull guides. 

Best, 
Amar 

Amar Ayyash 
www.anythinglarus.com 

> On Jan 8, 2016, at 3:24 PM, Mike O'Keeffe  wrote: 
> 
> Hi, 
> 
> 
> 
> Interestingly the comments that I have received today seem to all have 
> a slant towards a hybrid origin and all referring to the Pacific NW 
> hybrid zone. Having been looking at images from Japan today however I 
> think its safe to say the jury remains out as far as I am concerned. 
> The 6-8 kodak scale primary pattern cutoff for GWG from the reference 
> guides (both Howell & Dunn and Olsen & Larsson) clearly cannot 
> possibly include the population of birds wintering in NE Asia. 
> 
> 
> 
> Here are a couple of examples from Asia which I suspect are in the 
> Kodak scale 8-9 range. 
> 
> http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Z3QHhMZC1GY/UuA3MSmQTII/AAAAAAAADI0/YVVTzMOp 
> u5k/s1 
> 600/japan+birding+Glaucous-winged+Gull+adult+Hanasaki+harbour+Nemuro+H 
> okkaid 
> o+january+2014+Amundsen+Biotope.jpg 
> 
> http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_TjsY98kGM4s/TN_HhqNWCUI/AAAAAAAAKjA/nlhBxt1B 
> aCs/s1 
> 600/_MG_1352.JPG 
> 
> 
> 
> And here are a couple that could be even darker, in the Kodak scale 
> 9-12 range perhaps, where I think the Irish bird sits. 
> 
> https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/5269088461/ 
> 
> https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/6850236860/ 
> 
> http://www.birdquest-tours.com/galleryImages/ai_1271238423232.jpg 
> 
> 
> 
> If based on the bird's smallish bill this bird it is said most closely 
> resembles an American Pacific Northwest GWG X HG (or Cook Inlet Gull) 
> here is a good match... 
> 
> http://gull-research.org/smithsonianus/images/howell/th/096.JPG 
> 
> ...but for comparison on the Japanese side of the water we have this 
GWG... 
> 
> http://www.stuartelsom.co.uk/assets/gallery/copyrightphotos/JP09-GWG01 
> -01-09 
> .JPG 
> 
> 
> 
> The Irish bird, whatever it is may have been cut from the same cloth 
> as this Danish bird which returned for consecutive winters between 
2009-2012. 
> 
> http://gulldk.blogspot.ie/2013/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glaucesce 
> ns.htm 
> l 
> 
> http://gulldk.blogspot.dk/2012/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glaucesce 
> ns.htm 
> l 
> 
> 
> 
> Regards 
> 
> 
> 
> Mike O'Keeffe 
> 
> Ireland 
> 
> http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-sc 
> ales-a 
> nd-gulls.html 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> -----Original Message----- 
> From: Lethaby, Nick [mailto:nlethaby AT ti.com] 
> Sent: 07 January 2016 22:14 
> To: Mike O'Keeffe; BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU 
> Subject: RE: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull 
> 
> 
> 
> The birds with darker wing-tips are probably mostly wintering in the 
> Aleutians/Bering Sea close to the breeding grounds or migrating down 
> to the Kuriles and Hokkaido, which isn't super far. GWGU is rare south 
> of Hokkaido (one sees just a few at Chosi, the famous gull site N of 
> Tokyo). So I would expect GWGU with darker wing-tips to molt fairly 
> early as there is no long migration to arrest molt for. My impression 
> is that GWGU also molts early on the US Pacific Coast. At least one 
> doesn't commonly see juvenile plumage well into mid-late winter as in 
Thayer's and Herring. 
> 
> 
> 
> -----Original Message----- 
> 
> From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification [ 
>  mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] 
> On Behalf Of Mike O'Keeffe 
> 
> Sent: Thursday, January 07, 2016 12:57 PM 
> 
> To:  BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU 
> 
> Subject: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull 
> 
> 
> 
> Hi, 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Thanks everyone for your responses. There is no doubt that 
> experienced observers develop an eye and a memory muscle for judging 
> subtle patterns and tones of commonly observed birds in the field. 
> But I doubt that this field skill is readily transferable to the 
> assessment of tones from photos. It seems to me there are simply too 
> many variables at play. Perfectly accurate image exposure is difficult 
enough to achieve at the best of times. 
> 
> Exposure, lighting, dynamic range, lens focal length and relative 
> perspective among other parameters can all affect the capture and 
> appearance of subtle tones. And those are just the ambient lighting 
> and exposure elements. A bird's posture and angle relative to the 
> camera plays an equally important role. So I often wonder are we 
> fooling ourselves when we try and gauge tonal levels so precisely from 
> photographs. A comparative analysis like a grey scale tool provides 
> some basis for a more objective, comparative analysis than one based 
solely on our visual perception. 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> I estimate, based on a comparative analysis using the grey scale tool, 
> and backed up by what I saw of the Irish bird in the field that the 
> Irish GWG has a mantle grey scale value close to 6 and a comparable 
> primary pattern grey scale value of at least 10 and probably 11 or 12. 
> 
> 
> 
> http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-sc 
> ales-a 
> nd-gulls.html 
> 
> 
> 
>  
> https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/684841790776721408 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Obviously the outer primaries are not entirely new and should be at 
> least a couple of month's old. Surprisingly P7-P9 seem a tad darker 
> than the still-growing P10 on the right wing. P10 is missing entirely 
> on the left wing. P10 moult seems a couple of months late by standard 
> references. Is this lateness ever encountered within it's normal N. 
> American range? Do Asian winterers moult P10 later than N. American 
> birds? Or could it's lateness simply be a reflection of the type of 
> journey this bird may have undergone? Is this an example of arrested 
> moult? The ragged tips of its tail and secondaries and the presence 
> of what might be oil staining on its lesser and marginal coverts, plus 
> a broken P8 feather (right wing) all suggest this bird has had a rough 
> ride! And it doesn't seem to be very dominant while coming to bread 
> at the pier either! See photos of a nasty attack by a young HG 
> 
>  
> https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/683756672913899521 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> In the two main gull reference guides I found the following points of 
> interest. 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Howell & Dunn 
> 
> 
> 
> "Adult has pale grey upperparts (Kodak 5-6) with medium grey wingtips 
> (6-8; averaging paler on Northern populations)...". 
> 
> 
> 
> Taken at face value, and assuming my analysis of grey scale is roughly 
> correct, this puts the Irish bird well outside the normal published 
> range at least for N. American GWG according to Howell and Dunn. But 
> it's not clear how definitive this point is and from what studies 
> specifically it has been derived. Was the study based solely on N. 
> American birds and from what part of the range? Could there be an 
> element of selective or experimental bias trying to second-guess the 
> hybrid element in these data sets? One thing is for sure - grey scale 
> 6-8 represents a very small margin beyond concolorous with the mantle 
shade - almost imperceptible in the field I should think. 
> 
> The Irish bird is certainly much darker than that. 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Olsen & Larsson 
> 
> 
> 
> Plates on page 162 depict birds with primary tips very similar in tone 
> to the mantle and these are considered good GWGs. I would have little 
> difficulty accepting these fall in the grey scale range 1-2 levels 
> above mantle shade. Plate 179 on page 163 depicts a bird similar to 
> or perhaps just marginally darker-tipped than the Irish bird and it is 
> described as "too dark for Glaucous-winged" but again without a clear 
> explanation as to how that assertion was arrived at. In the body 
> text..."birds with (primary pattern Kodak grey scale level) 8-12 
> probably of hybrid origin". It also mentions that for Glaucous-winged 
> X Western hybrids the "darker wing-tip" is "Kodak grey scale 10-12". 
> This again seems to be in line with the Irish bird based on my 
> analysis. But again what studies are these remarks based upon and how was 
the hybrid cut-off line determined. 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> In summary 
> 
> 
> 
> The overall consensus among those from N. America who have commented 
> it seems (though with a few people being cautious) is that despite the 
> bird's fairly dark primaries the bird is considered within "the 
> currently accepted range" for GWG in N. America. With no other 
> obvious hybrid features it seems to be a good GWG, perhaps an even 
> better candidate from an Asian population perspective. Still a hybrid 
> or back-cross cannot be totally eliminated. Furthermore my analysis 
> if correct (primary grey scale 11-12) is at odd with both the main 
> published reference guides. This suggests that the perception of what 
> is just about acceptable as a GWG among gull experts in N.Am in terms 
> of the Kodak scale at the moment is not in line with the current 
> standard reference guides, for whom a primary pattern grey-scale of 
> 
> 6-8 is considered the limit. It would be really useful to know what 
> specific studies the 6-8 limit is based upon and was there any genetic 
> analysis underpinning it. It would also be useful to know why birders 
> consider the acceptable range of darkness to be greater than what is 
> currently published. 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Regards 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Mike O'Keeffe 
> 
> 
> 
> Ireland 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> This email has been scanned by BullGuard antivirus protection. 
> 
> For more info visit  www.bullguard.com 
> 
>  te=smt 
> 
> p&url=/> 
> 
> 
> 
> Archives:  
> http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html 
> 
> 
> This email has been scanned by BullGuard antivirus protection. 
> For more info visit www.bullguard.com 
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Subject: Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
From: Alvaro Jaramillo <chucao AT COASTSIDE.NET>
Date: Fri, 8 Jan 2016 17:09:58 -0800
These problems are easier if you are willing to accept uncertainty, a more 
probabilistic manner of birding. But we are black and white, 100% or not, in 
terms of identification. You will never be able to adequately judge variation 
in Glaucous-winged without having a certain level of uncertainty, this is due 
to the various and very common hybrids, as well as geographic variation. So 
unless we begin to accept birds as "most probably" or "highly certain" to be a 
Glaucous-winged, we really will only accept the birds which are smack dab in 
the middle of the distribution or the extreme on the paler end, rather than 
birds in the darker end of the distribution. I am comfortable with a certain 
level of uncertainty in an identification of a gull, but the committees are 
unlikely to be comfortable with this. 

Alvaro 

Alvaro Jaramillo
alvaro AT alvarosadventures.com
www.alvarosadventures.com


-----Original Message-----
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification 
[mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of Tony Leukering 

Sent: Friday, January 8, 2016 4:18 PM
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

Mike wrote:
 


Does this not represent a potential blind spot. While the hybrid mess may seem 
like an insurmountable challenge all puzzles I like to believe can be cracked. 


 Yes, it certainly is. However, it's a blind spot the way around which is 
simple, but very far from easy. It is also very similar to the situation with 
Iceland Gull in California, though without the massive taxonomic-uncertainty 
elephant in the room. 


Tony

 


Tony Leukering
Largo, FL
http://cowyebird.blogspot.com/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/tony_leukering/

http://aba.org/photoquiz/

 

 

-----Original Message-----
From: Mike O'Keeffe 
To: BIRDWG01 
Sent: Fri, Jan 8, 2016 6:56 pm
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

Amar,

Thanks for the frank response. Obviously the grey scale element to this 
interests me most - it was afterall the core subject of my blog post. 

Surely, its intriguing and of interest to this forum that the primary texts 
appear to exclude the darker Asian GWGs by narrowing the accepted primary grey 
scale range to 6-8 and, if what you say is correct, so would many of the N. Am 
rarities committees? Does this not represent a potential blind spot. While the 
hybrid mess may seem like an insurmountable challenge all puzzles I like to 
believe can be cracked. 


Regards

Mike





-----Original Message-----
From: Amar Attach [mailto:amarayyash AT gmail.com]
Sent: 08 January 2016 22:04
To: Mike O'Keeffe
Cc: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

To put this identification conundrum in perspective, the Irish gull would very 
likely be rejected as a pure Glaucous-winged by most records committees in 
North America, if not all. This is where we're at with this species: 

person A suspects a hybrid, while person B sees an acceptable GL-winged. 

I imagine this thread will continue in this circle regardless of Kodak gray 
scale values found in the current gull guides. 


Best,
Amar

Amar Ayyash
www.anythinglarus.com

> On Jan 8, 2016, at 3:24 PM, Mike O'Keeffe  wrote:
> 
> Hi,
> 
> 
> 
> Interestingly the comments that I have received today seem to all have 
> a slant towards a hybrid origin and all referring to the Pacific NW 
> hybrid zone.  Having been looking at images from Japan today however I 
> think its safe to say the jury remains out as far as I am concerned.
> The 6-8 kodak scale primary pattern cutoff for GWG from the reference 
> guides (both Howell & Dunn and Olsen & Larsson) clearly cannot 
> possibly include the population of birds wintering in NE Asia.
> 
> 
> 
> Here are a couple of examples from Asia which I suspect are in the 
> Kodak scale 8-9 range.
> 
> http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Z3QHhMZC1GY/UuA3MSmQTII/AAAAAAAADI0/YVVTzMOp
> u5k/s1
> 600/japan+birding+Glaucous-winged+Gull+adult+Hanasaki+harbour+Nemuro+H
> okkaid
> o+january+2014+Amundsen+Biotope.jpg
> 
> http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_TjsY98kGM4s/TN_HhqNWCUI/AAAAAAAAKjA/nlhBxt1B
> aCs/s1
> 600/_MG_1352.JPG
> 
> 
> 
> And here are a couple that could be even darker, in the Kodak scale
> 9-12 range perhaps, where I think the Irish bird sits.
> 
> https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/5269088461/
> 
> https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/6850236860/
> 
> http://www.birdquest-tours.com/galleryImages/ai_1271238423232.jpg
> 
> 
> 
> If based on the bird's smallish bill this bird it is said most closely 
> resembles an American Pacific Northwest GWG X HG (or Cook Inlet Gull) 
> here is a good match...
> 
> http://gull-research.org/smithsonianus/images/howell/th/096.JPG
> 
> ...but for comparison on the Japanese side of the water we have this
GWG...
> 
> http://www.stuartelsom.co.uk/assets/gallery/copyrightphotos/JP09-GWG01
> -01-09
> .JPG
> 
> 
> 
> The Irish bird, whatever it is may have been cut from the same cloth 
> as this Danish bird which returned for consecutive winters between
2009-2012.
> 
> http://gulldk.blogspot.ie/2013/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glaucesce
> ns.htm
> l
> 
> http://gulldk.blogspot.dk/2012/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glaucesce
> ns.htm
> l
> 
> 
> 
> Regards
> 
> 
> 
> Mike O'Keeffe
> 
> Ireland
> 
> http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-sc
> ales-a
> nd-gulls.html
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Lethaby, Nick [mailto:nlethaby AT ti.com]
> Sent: 07 January 2016 22:14
> To: Mike O'Keeffe; BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> Subject: RE: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> 
> 
> 
> The birds with darker wing-tips are probably mostly wintering in the 
> Aleutians/Bering Sea close to the breeding grounds or migrating down 
> to the Kuriles and Hokkaido, which isn't super far. GWGU is rare south 
> of Hokkaido (one sees just a few at Chosi, the famous gull site N of 
> Tokyo). So I would expect GWGU with darker wing-tips to molt fairly 
> early as there is no long migration to arrest molt for. My impression 
> is that GWGU also molts early on the US Pacific Coast. At least one 
> doesn't commonly see juvenile plumage well into mid-late winter as in
Thayer's and Herring.
> 
> 
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> 
> From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification [ 
>  mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] 
> On Behalf Of Mike O'Keeffe
> 
> Sent: Thursday, January 07, 2016 12:57 PM
> 
> To:   BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> 
> Subject: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> 
> 
> 
> Hi,
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Thanks everyone for your responses.  There is no doubt that 
> experienced observers develop an eye and a memory muscle for judging 
> subtle patterns and tones of commonly observed birds in the field.
> But I doubt that this field skill is readily transferable to the 
> assessment of tones from photos.  It seems to me there are simply too 
> many variables at play.  Perfectly accurate image exposure is 
> difficult
enough to achieve at the best of times.
> 
> Exposure, lighting, dynamic range, lens focal length and relative 
> perspective among other parameters can all affect the capture and 
> appearance of subtle tones.  And those are just the ambient lighting 
> and exposure elements.  A bird's posture and angle relative to the 
> camera plays an equally important role.  So I often wonder are we 
> fooling ourselves when we try and gauge tonal levels so precisely from 
> photographs.  A comparative analysis like a grey scale tool provides 
> some basis for a more objective, comparative analysis than one based
solely on our visual perception.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> I estimate, based on a comparative analysis using the grey scale tool, 
> and backed up by what I saw of the Irish bird in the field that the 
> Irish GWG has a mantle grey scale value close to 6 and a comparable 
> primary pattern grey scale value of at least 10 and probably 11 or 12.
> 
> 
> 
> http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-sc
> ales-a
> nd-gulls.html
> 
> 
> 
> 
> https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/684841790776721408
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Obviously the outer primaries are not entirely new and should be at 
> least a couple of month's old.  Surprisingly P7-P9 seem a tad darker 
> than the still-growing P10 on the right wing.  P10 is missing entirely 
> on the left wing.  P10 moult seems a couple of months late by standard 
> references.  Is this lateness ever encountered within it's normal N.
> American range?  Do Asian winterers moult P10 later than N. American 
> birds?  Or could it's lateness simply be a reflection of the type of 
> journey this bird may have undergone?  Is this an example of arrested 
> moult?  The ragged tips of its tail and secondaries and the presence 
> of what might be oil staining on its lesser and marginal coverts, plus 
> a broken P8 feather (right wing) all suggest this bird has had a rough 
> ride!  And it doesn't seem to be very dominant while coming to bread 
> at the pier either!  See photos of a nasty attack by a young HG
> 
> 
> https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/683756672913899521
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> In the two main gull reference guides I found the following points of 
> interest.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Howell & Dunn
> 
> 
> 
> "Adult has pale grey upperparts (Kodak 5-6) with medium grey wingtips 
> (6-8; averaging paler on Northern populations)...".
> 
> 
> 
> Taken at face value, and assuming my analysis of grey scale is roughly 
> correct, this puts the Irish bird well outside the normal published 
> range at least for N. American GWG according to Howell and Dunn.  But 
> it's not clear how definitive this point is and from what studies 
> specifically it has been derived.  Was the study based solely on N.
> American birds and from what part of the range?  Could there be an 
> element of selective or experimental bias trying to second-guess the 
> hybrid element in these data sets?  One thing is for sure - grey scale
> 6-8 represents a very small margin beyond concolorous with the mantle
shade - almost imperceptible in the field I should think.
> 
> The Irish bird is certainly much darker than that.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Olsen & Larsson
> 
> 
> 
> Plates on page 162 depict birds with primary tips very similar in tone 
> to the mantle and these are considered good GWGs.  I would have little 
> difficulty accepting these fall in the grey scale range 1-2 levels 
> above mantle shade.  Plate 179 on page 163 depicts a bird similar to 
> or perhaps just marginally darker-tipped than the Irish bird and it is 
> described as "too dark for Glaucous-winged" but again without a clear 
> explanation as to how that assertion was arrived at.  In the body 
> text..."birds with (primary pattern Kodak grey scale level) 8-12 
> probably of hybrid origin".  It also mentions that for Glaucous-winged 
> X Western hybrids the "darker wing-tip" is "Kodak grey scale 10-12".
> This again seems to be in line with the Irish bird based on my 
> analysis.  But again what studies are these remarks based upon and how 
> was
the hybrid cut-off line determined.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> In summary
> 
> 
> 
> The overall consensus among those from N. America who have commented 
> it seems (though with a few people being cautious) is that despite the 
> bird's fairly dark primaries the bird is considered within "the 
> currently accepted range" for GWG in N. America.  With no other 
> obvious hybrid features it seems to be a good GWG, perhaps an even 
> better candidate from an Asian population perspective.  Still a hybrid 
> or back-cross cannot be totally eliminated.  Furthermore my analysis 
> if correct (primary grey scale 11-12) is at odd with both the main 
> published reference guides.  This suggests that the perception of what 
> is just about acceptable as a GWG among gull experts in N.Am in terms 
> of the Kodak scale at the moment is not in line with the current 
> standard reference guides, for whom a primary pattern grey-scale of
> 
> 6-8 is considered the limit.  It would be really useful to know what 
> specific studies the 6-8 limit is based upon and was there any genetic 
> analysis underpinning it.  It would also be useful to know why birders 
> consider the acceptable range of darkness to be greater than what is 
> currently published.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Regards
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Mike O'Keeffe
> 
> 
> 
> Ireland
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> This email has been scanned by BullGuard antivirus protection.
> 
> For more info visit   www.bullguard.com
> 
>  te=smt
> 
> p&url=/>
> 
> 
> 
> Archives:  
> http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
> 
> 
> This email has been scanned by BullGuard antivirus protection.
> For more info visit www.bullguard.com
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> p&url=/>
> 
> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html


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Subject: Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
From: Tony Leukering <greatgrayowl AT AOL.COM>
Date: Fri, 8 Jan 2016 19:18:05 -0500
Mike wrote:
 


Does this not represent a potential blind
spot.  While the hybrid mess may seem like an insurmountable challenge all
puzzles I like to believe can be cracked.

 Yes, it certainly is. However, it's a blind spot the way around which is 
simple, but very far from easy. It is also very similar to the situation with 
Iceland Gull in California, though without the massive taxonomic-uncertainty 
elephant in the room. 


Tony

 


Tony Leukering
Largo, FL
http://cowyebird.blogspot.com/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/tony_leukering/

http://aba.org/photoquiz/

 

 

-----Original Message-----
From: Mike O'Keeffe 
To: BIRDWG01 
Sent: Fri, Jan 8, 2016 6:56 pm
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

Amar,

Thanks for the frank response.  Obviously the grey scale element to this
interests me most - it was afterall the core subject of my blog post.
Surely, its intriguing and of interest to this forum that the primary texts
appear to exclude the darker Asian GWGs by narrowing the accepted primary
grey scale range to 6-8 and, if what you say is correct, so would many of
the N. Am rarities committees?  Does this not represent a potential blind
spot.  While the hybrid mess may seem like an insurmountable challenge all
puzzles I like to believe can be cracked.

Regards

Mike





-----Original Message-----
From: Amar Attach [mailto:amarayyash AT gmail.com] 
Sent: 08 January 2016 22:04
To: Mike O'Keeffe
Cc: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

To put this identification conundrum in perspective, the Irish gull would
very likely be rejected as a pure Glaucous-winged by most records committees
in North America, if not all. This is where we're at with this species:
person A suspects a hybrid, while person B sees an acceptable GL-winged. 

I imagine this thread will continue in this circle regardless of Kodak gray
scale values found in the current gull guides.

Best,
Amar

Amar Ayyash
www.anythinglarus.com

> On Jan 8, 2016, at 3:24 PM, Mike O'Keeffe  wrote:
> 
> Hi,
> 
> 
> 
> Interestingly the comments that I have received today seem to all have 
> a slant towards a hybrid origin and all referring to the Pacific NW 
> hybrid zone.  Having been looking at images from Japan today however I 
> think its safe to say the jury remains out as far as I am concerned.  
> The 6-8 kodak scale primary pattern cutoff for GWG from the reference 
> guides (both Howell & Dunn and Olsen & Larsson) clearly cannot 
> possibly include the population of birds wintering in NE Asia.
> 
> 
> 
> Here are a couple of examples from Asia which I suspect are in the 
> Kodak scale 8-9 range.
> 
> http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Z3QHhMZC1GY/UuA3MSmQTII/AAAAAAAADI0/YVVTzMOp
> u5k/s1 
> 600/japan+birding+Glaucous-winged+Gull+adult+Hanasaki+harbour+Nemuro+H
> okkaid
> o+january+2014+Amundsen+Biotope.jpg
> 
> http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_TjsY98kGM4s/TN_HhqNWCUI/AAAAAAAAKjA/nlhBxt1B
> aCs/s1
> 600/_MG_1352.JPG
> 
> 
> 
> And here are a couple that could be even darker, in the Kodak scale 
> 9-12 range perhaps, where I think the Irish bird sits.
> 
> https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/5269088461/
> 
> https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/6850236860/
> 
> http://www.birdquest-tours.com/galleryImages/ai_1271238423232.jpg
> 
> 
> 
> If based on the bird's smallish bill this bird it is said most closely 
> resembles an American Pacific Northwest GWG X HG (or Cook Inlet Gull) 
> here is a good match...
> 
> http://gull-research.org/smithsonianus/images/howell/th/096.JPG
> 
> ...but for comparison on the Japanese side of the water we have this
GWG...
> 
> http://www.stuartelsom.co.uk/assets/gallery/copyrightphotos/JP09-GWG01
> -01-09
> .JPG
> 
> 
> 
> The Irish bird, whatever it is may have been cut from the same cloth 
> as this Danish bird which returned for consecutive winters between
2009-2012.
> 
> http://gulldk.blogspot.ie/2013/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glaucesce
> ns.htm
> l
> 
> http://gulldk.blogspot.dk/2012/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glaucesce
> ns.htm
> l
> 
> 
> 
> Regards
> 
> 
> 
> Mike O'Keeffe
> 
> Ireland
> 
> http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-sc
> ales-a
> nd-gulls.html
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Lethaby, Nick [mailto:nlethaby AT ti.com]
> Sent: 07 January 2016 22:14
> To: Mike O'Keeffe; BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> Subject: RE: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> 
> 
> 
> The birds with darker wing-tips are probably mostly wintering in the 
> Aleutians/Bering Sea close to the breeding grounds or migrating down 
> to the Kuriles and Hokkaido, which isn't super far. GWGU is rare south 
> of Hokkaido (one sees just a few at Chosi, the famous gull site N of 
> Tokyo). So I would expect GWGU with darker wing-tips to molt fairly 
> early as there is no long migration to arrest molt for. My impression 
> is that GWGU also molts early on the US Pacific Coast. At least one 
> doesn't commonly see juvenile plumage well into mid-late winter as in
Thayer's and Herring.
> 
> 
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> 
> From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification [ 
>  mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] 
> On Behalf Of Mike O'Keeffe
> 
> Sent: Thursday, January 07, 2016 12:57 PM
> 
> To:   BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> 
> Subject: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> 
> 
> 
> Hi,
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Thanks everyone for your responses.  There is no doubt that 
> experienced observers develop an eye and a memory muscle for judging 
> subtle patterns and tones of commonly observed birds in the field.  
> But I doubt that this field skill is readily transferable to the 
> assessment of tones from photos.  It seems to me there are simply too 
> many variables at play.  Perfectly accurate image exposure is difficult
enough to achieve at the best of times.
> 
> Exposure, lighting, dynamic range, lens focal length and relative 
> perspective among other parameters can all affect the capture and 
> appearance of subtle tones.  And those are just the ambient lighting 
> and exposure elements.  A bird's posture and angle relative to the 
> camera plays an equally important role.  So I often wonder are we 
> fooling ourselves when we try and gauge tonal levels so precisely from 
> photographs.  A comparative analysis like a grey scale tool provides 
> some basis for a more objective, comparative analysis than one based
solely on our visual perception.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> I estimate, based on a comparative analysis using the grey scale tool, 
> and backed up by what I saw of the Irish bird in the field that the 
> Irish GWG has a mantle grey scale value close to 6 and a comparable 
> primary pattern grey scale value of at least 10 and probably 11 or 12.
> 
> 
> 
> http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-sc
> ales-a
> nd-gulls.html
> 
> 
> 
> 
> https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/684841790776721408
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Obviously the outer primaries are not entirely new and should be at 
> least a couple of month's old.  Surprisingly P7-P9 seem a tad darker 
> than the still-growing P10 on the right wing.  P10 is missing entirely 
> on the left wing.  P10 moult seems a couple of months late by standard 
> references.  Is this lateness ever encountered within it's normal N. 
> American range?  Do Asian winterers moult P10 later than N. American 
> birds?  Or could it's lateness simply be a reflection of the type of 
> journey this bird may have undergone?  Is this an example of arrested 
> moult?  The ragged tips of its tail and secondaries and the presence 
> of what might be oil staining on its lesser and marginal coverts, plus 
> a broken P8 feather (right wing) all suggest this bird has had a rough 
> ride!  And it doesn't seem to be very dominant while coming to bread 
> at the pier either!  See photos of a nasty attack by a young HG
> 
> 
> https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/683756672913899521
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> In the two main gull reference guides I found the following points of 
> interest.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Howell & Dunn
> 
> 
> 
> "Adult has pale grey upperparts (Kodak 5-6) with medium grey wingtips 
> (6-8; averaging paler on Northern populations)...".
> 
> 
> 
> Taken at face value, and assuming my analysis of grey scale is roughly 
> correct, this puts the Irish bird well outside the normal published 
> range at least for N. American GWG according to Howell and Dunn.  But 
> it's not clear how definitive this point is and from what studies 
> specifically it has been derived.  Was the study based solely on N. 
> American birds and from what part of the range?  Could there be an 
> element of selective or experimental bias trying to second-guess the 
> hybrid element in these data sets?  One thing is for sure - grey scale 
> 6-8 represents a very small margin beyond concolorous with the mantle
shade - almost imperceptible in the field I should think.
> 
> The Irish bird is certainly much darker than that.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Olsen & Larsson
> 
> 
> 
> Plates on page 162 depict birds with primary tips very similar in tone 
> to the mantle and these are considered good GWGs.  I would have little 
> difficulty accepting these fall in the grey scale range 1-2 levels 
> above mantle shade.  Plate 179 on page 163 depicts a bird similar to 
> or perhaps just marginally darker-tipped than the Irish bird and it is 
> described as "too dark for Glaucous-winged" but again without a clear 
> explanation as to how that assertion was arrived at.  In the body 
> text..."birds with (primary pattern Kodak grey scale level) 8-12 
> probably of hybrid origin".  It also mentions that for Glaucous-winged 
> X Western hybrids the "darker wing-tip" is "Kodak grey scale 10-12".  
> This again seems to be in line with the Irish bird based on my 
> analysis.  But again what studies are these remarks based upon and how was
the hybrid cut-off line determined.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> In summary
> 
> 
> 
> The overall consensus among those from N. America who have commented 
> it seems (though with a few people being cautious) is that despite the 
> bird's fairly dark primaries the bird is considered within "the 
> currently accepted range" for GWG in N. America.  With no other 
> obvious hybrid features it seems to be a good GWG, perhaps an even 
> better candidate from an Asian population perspective.  Still a hybrid 
> or back-cross cannot be totally eliminated.  Furthermore my analysis 
> if correct (primary grey scale 11-12) is at odd with both the main 
> published reference guides.  This suggests that the perception of what 
> is just about acceptable as a GWG among gull experts in N.Am in terms 
> of the Kodak scale at the moment is not in line with the current 
> standard reference guides, for whom a primary pattern grey-scale of
> 
> 6-8 is considered the limit.  It would be really useful to know what 
> specific studies the 6-8 limit is based upon and was there any genetic 
> analysis underpinning it.  It would also be useful to know why birders 
> consider the acceptable range of darkness to be greater than what is 
> currently published.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Regards
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Mike O'Keeffe
> 
> 
> 
> Ireland
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> This email has been scanned by BullGuard antivirus protection.
> 
> For more info visit   www.bullguard.com
> 
>  te=smt
> 
> p&url=/>
> 
> 
> 
> Archives:  
> http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
> 
> 
> This email has been scanned by BullGuard antivirus protection.
> For more info visit www.bullguard.com
>  te=smt
> p&url=/>
> 
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Subject: Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
From: "Mike O'Keeffe" <okeeffeml AT EIRCOM.NET>
Date: Fri, 8 Jan 2016 23:55:16 +0000
Amar,

Thanks for the frank response.  Obviously the grey scale element to this
interests me most - it was afterall the core subject of my blog post.
Surely, its intriguing and of interest to this forum that the primary texts
appear to exclude the darker Asian GWGs by narrowing the accepted primary
grey scale range to 6-8 and, if what you say is correct, so would many of
the N. Am rarities committees?  Does this not represent a potential blind
spot.  While the hybrid mess may seem like an insurmountable challenge all
puzzles I like to believe can be cracked.

Regards

Mike





-----Original Message-----
From: Amar Attach [mailto:amarayyash AT gmail.com] 
Sent: 08 January 2016 22:04
To: Mike O'Keeffe
Cc: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

To put this identification conundrum in perspective, the Irish gull would
very likely be rejected as a pure Glaucous-winged by most records committees
in North America, if not all. This is where we're at with this species:
person A suspects a hybrid, while person B sees an acceptable GL-winged. 

I imagine this thread will continue in this circle regardless of Kodak gray
scale values found in the current gull guides.

Best,
Amar

Amar Ayyash
www.anythinglarus.com

> On Jan 8, 2016, at 3:24 PM, Mike O'Keeffe  wrote:
> 
> Hi,
> 
> 
> 
> Interestingly the comments that I have received today seem to all have 
> a slant towards a hybrid origin and all referring to the Pacific NW 
> hybrid zone.  Having been looking at images from Japan today however I 
> think its safe to say the jury remains out as far as I am concerned.  
> The 6-8 kodak scale primary pattern cutoff for GWG from the reference 
> guides (both Howell & Dunn and Olsen & Larsson) clearly cannot 
> possibly include the population of birds wintering in NE Asia.
> 
> 
> 
> Here are a couple of examples from Asia which I suspect are in the 
> Kodak scale 8-9 range.
> 
> http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Z3QHhMZC1GY/UuA3MSmQTII/AAAAAAAADI0/YVVTzMOp
> u5k/s1 
> 600/japan+birding+Glaucous-winged+Gull+adult+Hanasaki+harbour+Nemuro+H
> okkaid
> o+january+2014+Amundsen+Biotope.jpg
> 
> http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_TjsY98kGM4s/TN_HhqNWCUI/AAAAAAAAKjA/nlhBxt1B
> aCs/s1
> 600/_MG_1352.JPG
> 
> 
> 
> And here are a couple that could be even darker, in the Kodak scale 
> 9-12 range perhaps, where I think the Irish bird sits.
> 
> https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/5269088461/
> 
> https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/6850236860/
> 
> http://www.birdquest-tours.com/galleryImages/ai_1271238423232.jpg
> 
> 
> 
> If based on the bird's smallish bill this bird it is said most closely 
> resembles an American Pacific Northwest GWG X HG (or Cook Inlet Gull) 
> here is a good match...
> 
> http://gull-research.org/smithsonianus/images/howell/th/096.JPG
> 
> ...but for comparison on the Japanese side of the water we have this
GWG...
> 
> http://www.stuartelsom.co.uk/assets/gallery/copyrightphotos/JP09-GWG01
> -01-09
> .JPG
> 
> 
> 
> The Irish bird, whatever it is may have been cut from the same cloth 
> as this Danish bird which returned for consecutive winters between
2009-2012.
> 
> http://gulldk.blogspot.ie/2013/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glaucesce
> ns.htm
> l
> 
> http://gulldk.blogspot.dk/2012/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glaucesce
> ns.htm
> l
> 
> 
> 
> Regards
> 
> 
> 
> Mike O'Keeffe
> 
> Ireland
> 
> http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-sc
> ales-a
> nd-gulls.html
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Lethaby, Nick [mailto:nlethaby AT ti.com]
> Sent: 07 January 2016 22:14
> To: Mike O'Keeffe; BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> Subject: RE: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> 
> 
> 
> The birds with darker wing-tips are probably mostly wintering in the 
> Aleutians/Bering Sea close to the breeding grounds or migrating down 
> to the Kuriles and Hokkaido, which isn't super far. GWGU is rare south 
> of Hokkaido (one sees just a few at Chosi, the famous gull site N of 
> Tokyo). So I would expect GWGU with darker wing-tips to molt fairly 
> early as there is no long migration to arrest molt for. My impression 
> is that GWGU also molts early on the US Pacific Coast. At least one 
> doesn't commonly see juvenile plumage well into mid-late winter as in
Thayer's and Herring.
> 
> 
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> 
> From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification [ 
>  mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] 
> On Behalf Of Mike O'Keeffe
> 
> Sent: Thursday, January 07, 2016 12:57 PM
> 
> To:   BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> 
> Subject: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> 
> 
> 
> Hi,
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Thanks everyone for your responses.  There is no doubt that 
> experienced observers develop an eye and a memory muscle for judging 
> subtle patterns and tones of commonly observed birds in the field.  
> But I doubt that this field skill is readily transferable to the 
> assessment of tones from photos.  It seems to me there are simply too 
> many variables at play.  Perfectly accurate image exposure is difficult
enough to achieve at the best of times.
> 
> Exposure, lighting, dynamic range, lens focal length and relative 
> perspective among other parameters can all affect the capture and 
> appearance of subtle tones.  And those are just the ambient lighting 
> and exposure elements.  A bird's posture and angle relative to the 
> camera plays an equally important role.  So I often wonder are we 
> fooling ourselves when we try and gauge tonal levels so precisely from 
> photographs.  A comparative analysis like a grey scale tool provides 
> some basis for a more objective, comparative analysis than one based
solely on our visual perception.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> I estimate, based on a comparative analysis using the grey scale tool, 
> and backed up by what I saw of the Irish bird in the field that the 
> Irish GWG has a mantle grey scale value close to 6 and a comparable 
> primary pattern grey scale value of at least 10 and probably 11 or 12.
> 
> 
> 
> http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-sc
> ales-a
> nd-gulls.html
> 
> 
> 
> 
> https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/684841790776721408
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Obviously the outer primaries are not entirely new and should be at 
> least a couple of month's old.  Surprisingly P7-P9 seem a tad darker 
> than the still-growing P10 on the right wing.  P10 is missing entirely 
> on the left wing.  P10 moult seems a couple of months late by standard 
> references.  Is this lateness ever encountered within it's normal N. 
> American range?  Do Asian winterers moult P10 later than N. American 
> birds?  Or could it's lateness simply be a reflection of the type of 
> journey this bird may have undergone?  Is this an example of arrested 
> moult?  The ragged tips of its tail and secondaries and the presence 
> of what might be oil staining on its lesser and marginal coverts, plus 
> a broken P8 feather (right wing) all suggest this bird has had a rough 
> ride!  And it doesn't seem to be very dominant while coming to bread 
> at the pier either!  See photos of a nasty attack by a young HG
> 
> 
> https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/683756672913899521
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> In the two main gull reference guides I found the following points of 
> interest.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Howell & Dunn
> 
> 
> 
> "Adult has pale grey upperparts (Kodak 5-6) with medium grey wingtips 
> (6-8; averaging paler on Northern populations)...".
> 
> 
> 
> Taken at face value, and assuming my analysis of grey scale is roughly 
> correct, this puts the Irish bird well outside the normal published 
> range at least for N. American GWG according to Howell and Dunn.  But 
> it's not clear how definitive this point is and from what studies 
> specifically it has been derived.  Was the study based solely on N. 
> American birds and from what part of the range?  Could there be an 
> element of selective or experimental bias trying to second-guess the 
> hybrid element in these data sets?  One thing is for sure - grey scale 
> 6-8 represents a very small margin beyond concolorous with the mantle
shade - almost imperceptible in the field I should think.
> 
> The Irish bird is certainly much darker than that.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Olsen & Larsson
> 
> 
> 
> Plates on page 162 depict birds with primary tips very similar in tone 
> to the mantle and these are considered good GWGs.  I would have little 
> difficulty accepting these fall in the grey scale range 1-2 levels 
> above mantle shade.  Plate 179 on page 163 depicts a bird similar to 
> or perhaps just marginally darker-tipped than the Irish bird and it is 
> described as "too dark for Glaucous-winged" but again without a clear 
> explanation as to how that assertion was arrived at.  In the body 
> text..."birds with (primary pattern Kodak grey scale level) 8-12 
> probably of hybrid origin".  It also mentions that for Glaucous-winged 
> X Western hybrids the "darker wing-tip" is "Kodak grey scale 10-12".  
> This again seems to be in line with the Irish bird based on my 
> analysis.  But again what studies are these remarks based upon and how was
the hybrid cut-off line determined.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> In summary
> 
> 
> 
> The overall consensus among those from N. America who have commented 
> it seems (though with a few people being cautious) is that despite the 
> bird's fairly dark primaries the bird is considered within "the 
> currently accepted range" for GWG in N. America.  With no other 
> obvious hybrid features it seems to be a good GWG, perhaps an even 
> better candidate from an Asian population perspective.  Still a hybrid 
> or back-cross cannot be totally eliminated.  Furthermore my analysis 
> if correct (primary grey scale 11-12) is at odd with both the main 
> published reference guides.  This suggests that the perception of what 
> is just about acceptable as a GWG among gull experts in N.Am in terms 
> of the Kodak scale at the moment is not in line with the current 
> standard reference guides, for whom a primary pattern grey-scale of
> 
> 6-8 is considered the limit.  It would be really useful to know what 
> specific studies the 6-8 limit is based upon and was there any genetic 
> analysis underpinning it.  It would also be useful to know why birders 
> consider the acceptable range of darkness to be greater than what is 
> currently published.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Regards
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Mike O'Keeffe
> 
> 
> 
> Ireland
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> This email has been scanned by BullGuard antivirus protection.
> 
> For more info visit   www.bullguard.com
> 
>  te=smt
> 
> p&url=/>
> 
> 
> 
> Archives:  
> http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
> 
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Subject: Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
From: Amar Attach <amarayyash AT GMAIL.COM>
Date: Fri, 8 Jan 2016 16:03:30 -0600
To put this identification conundrum in perspective, the Irish gull would very 
likely be rejected as a pure Glaucous-winged by most records committees in 
North America, if not all. This is where we're at with this species: person A 
suspects a hybrid, while person B sees an acceptable GL-winged. 


I imagine this thread will continue in this circle regardless of Kodak gray 
scale values found in the current gull guides. 


Best,
Amar

Amar Ayyash
www.anythinglarus.com

> On Jan 8, 2016, at 3:24 PM, Mike O'Keeffe  wrote:
> 
> Hi,
> 
> 
> 
> Interestingly the comments that I have received today seem to all have a
> slant towards a hybrid origin and all referring to the Pacific NW hybrid
> zone.  Having been looking at images from Japan today however I think its
> safe to say the jury remains out as far as I am concerned.  The 6-8 kodak
> scale primary pattern cutoff for GWG from the reference guides (both Howell
> & Dunn and Olsen & Larsson) clearly cannot possibly include the population
> of birds wintering in NE Asia.
> 
> 
> 
> Here are a couple of examples from Asia which I suspect are in the Kodak
> scale 8-9 range.
> 
> http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Z3QHhMZC1GY/UuA3MSmQTII/AAAAAAAADI0/YVVTzMOpu5k/s1
> 600/japan+birding+Glaucous-winged+Gull+adult+Hanasaki+harbour+Nemuro+Hokkaid
> o+january+2014+Amundsen+Biotope.jpg
> 
> http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_TjsY98kGM4s/TN_HhqNWCUI/AAAAAAAAKjA/nlhBxt1BaCs/s1
> 600/_MG_1352.JPG
> 
> 
> 
> And here are a couple that could be even darker, in the Kodak scale 9-12
> range perhaps, where I think the Irish bird sits.
> 
> https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/5269088461/
> 
> https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/6850236860/
> 
> http://www.birdquest-tours.com/galleryImages/ai_1271238423232.jpg 
> 
> 
> 
> If based on the bird's smallish bill this bird it is said most closely
> resembles an American Pacific Northwest GWG X HG (or Cook Inlet Gull) here
> is a good match...
> 
> http://gull-research.org/smithsonianus/images/howell/th/096.JPG
> 
> ...but for comparison on the Japanese side of the water we have this GWG...
> 
> http://www.stuartelsom.co.uk/assets/gallery/copyrightphotos/JP09-GWG01-01-09
> .JPG
> 
> 
> 
> The Irish bird, whatever it is may have been cut from the same cloth as this
> Danish bird which returned for consecutive winters between 2009-2012.
> 
> http://gulldk.blogspot.ie/2013/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glaucescens.htm
> l
> 
> http://gulldk.blogspot.dk/2012/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glaucescens.htm
> l
> 
> 
> 
> Regards
> 
> 
> 
> Mike O'Keeffe
> 
> Ireland
> 
> http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-scales-a
> nd-gulls.html 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Lethaby, Nick [mailto:nlethaby AT ti.com] 
> Sent: 07 January 2016 22:14
> To: Mike O'Keeffe; BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> Subject: RE: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> 
> 
> 
> The birds with darker wing-tips are probably mostly wintering in the
> Aleutians/Bering Sea close to the breeding grounds or migrating down to the
> Kuriles and Hokkaido, which isn't super far. GWGU is rare south of Hokkaido
> (one sees just a few at Chosi, the famous gull site N of Tokyo). So I would
> expect GWGU with darker wing-tips to molt fairly early as there is no long
> migration to arrest molt for. My impression is that GWGU also molts early on
> the US Pacific Coast. At least one doesn't commonly see juvenile plumage
> well into mid-late winter as in Thayer's and Herring.
> 
> 
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> 
> From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification [
>  mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On
> Behalf Of Mike O'Keeffe
> 
> Sent: Thursday, January 07, 2016 12:57 PM
> 
> To:   BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> 
> Subject: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
> 
> 
> 
> Hi,
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Thanks everyone for your responses.  There is no doubt that experienced
> observers develop an eye and a memory muscle for judging subtle patterns and
> tones of commonly observed birds in the field.  But I doubt that this field
> skill is readily transferable to the assessment of tones from photos.  It
> seems to me there are simply too many variables at play.  Perfectly accurate
> image exposure is difficult enough to achieve at the best of times.
> 
> Exposure, lighting, dynamic range, lens focal length and relative
> perspective among other parameters can all affect the capture and appearance
> of subtle tones.  And those are just the ambient lighting and exposure
> elements.  A bird's posture and angle relative to the camera plays an
> equally important role.  So I often wonder are we fooling ourselves when we
> try and gauge tonal levels so precisely from photographs.  A comparative
> analysis like a grey scale tool provides some basis for a more objective,
> comparative analysis than one based solely on our visual perception. 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> I estimate, based on a comparative analysis using the grey scale tool, and
> backed up by what I saw of the Irish bird in the field that the Irish GWG
> has a mantle grey scale value close to 6 and a comparable primary pattern
> grey scale value of at least 10 and probably 11 or 12.  
> 
> 
> 
> http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-scales-a
> nd-gulls.html 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/684841790776721408  
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Obviously the outer primaries are not entirely new and should be at least a
> couple of month's old.  Surprisingly P7-P9 seem a tad darker than the
> still-growing P10 on the right wing.  P10 is missing entirely on the left
> wing.  P10 moult seems a couple of months late by standard references.  Is
> this lateness ever encountered within it's normal N. American range?  Do
> Asian winterers moult P10 later than N. American birds?  Or could it's
> lateness simply be a reflection of the type of journey this bird may have
> undergone?  Is this an example of arrested moult?  The ragged tips of its
> tail and secondaries and the presence of what might be oil staining on its
> lesser and marginal coverts, plus a broken P8 feather (right wing) all
> suggest this bird has had a rough ride!  And it doesn't seem to be very
> dominant while coming to bread at the pier either!  See photos of a nasty
> attack by a young HG
> 
> 
> https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/683756672913899521 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> In the two main gull reference guides I found the following points of
> interest.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Howell & Dunn
> 
> 
> 
> "Adult has pale grey upperparts (Kodak 5-6) with medium grey wingtips (6-8;
> averaging paler on Northern populations)...".
> 
> 
> 
> Taken at face value, and assuming my analysis of grey scale is roughly
> correct, this puts the Irish bird well outside the normal published range at
> least for N. American GWG according to Howell and Dunn.  But it's not clear
> how definitive this point is and from what studies specifically it has been
> derived.  Was the study based solely on N. American birds and from what part
> of the range?  Could there be an element of selective or experimental bias
> trying to second-guess the hybrid element in these data sets?  One thing is
> for sure - grey scale 6-8 represents a very small margin beyond concolorous
> with the mantle shade - almost imperceptible in the field I should think.
> 
> The Irish bird is certainly much darker than that.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Olsen & Larsson
> 
> 
> 
> Plates on page 162 depict birds with primary tips very similar in tone to
> the mantle and these are considered good GWGs.  I would have little
> difficulty accepting these fall in the grey scale range 1-2 levels above
> mantle shade.  Plate 179 on page 163 depicts a bird similar to or perhaps
> just marginally darker-tipped than the Irish bird and it is described as
> "too dark for Glaucous-winged" but again without a clear explanation as to
> how that assertion was arrived at.  In the body text..."birds with (primary
> pattern Kodak grey scale level) 8-12 probably of hybrid origin".  It also
> mentions that for Glaucous-winged X Western hybrids the "darker wing-tip" is
> "Kodak grey scale 10-12".  This again seems to be in line with the Irish
> bird based on my analysis.  But again what studies are these remarks based
> upon and how was the hybrid cut-off line determined.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> In summary
> 
> 
> 
> The overall consensus among those from N. America who have commented it
> seems (though with a few people being cautious) is that despite the bird's
> fairly dark primaries the bird is considered within "the currently accepted
> range" for GWG in N. America.  With no other obvious hybrid features it
> seems to be a good GWG, perhaps an even better candidate from an Asian
> population perspective.  Still a hybrid or back-cross cannot be totally
> eliminated.  Furthermore my analysis if correct (primary grey scale 11-12)
> is at odd with both the main published reference guides.  This suggests that
> the perception of what is just about acceptable as a GWG among gull experts
> in N.Am in terms of the Kodak scale at the moment is not in line with the
> current standard reference guides, for whom a primary pattern grey-scale of
> 
> 6-8 is considered the limit.  It would be really useful to know what
> specific studies the 6-8 limit is based upon and was there any genetic
> analysis underpinning it.  It would also be useful to know why birders
> consider the acceptable range of darkness to be greater than what is
> currently published.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Regards
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Mike O'Keeffe
> 
> 
> 
> Ireland
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> This email has been scanned by BullGuard antivirus protection.
> 
> For more info visit   www.bullguard.com
> 
>  
> p&url=/> 
> 
> 
> 
> Archives:  
> http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
> 
> 
> This email has been scanned by BullGuard antivirus protection.
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Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
From: "Mike O'Keeffe" <okeeffeml AT EIRCOM.NET>
Date: Fri, 8 Jan 2016 21:24:37 +0000
Hi,

 

Interestingly the comments that I have received today seem to all have a
slant towards a hybrid origin and all referring to the Pacific NW hybrid
zone.  Having been looking at images from Japan today however I think its
safe to say the jury remains out as far as I am concerned.  The 6-8 kodak
scale primary pattern cutoff for GWG from the reference guides (both Howell
& Dunn and Olsen & Larsson) clearly cannot possibly include the population
of birds wintering in NE Asia.

 

Here are a couple of examples from Asia which I suspect are in the Kodak
scale 8-9 range.

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Z3QHhMZC1GY/UuA3MSmQTII/AAAAAAAADI0/YVVTzMOpu5k/s1
600/japan+birding+Glaucous-winged+Gull+adult+Hanasaki+harbour+Nemuro+Hokkaid
o+january+2014+Amundsen+Biotope.jpg

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_TjsY98kGM4s/TN_HhqNWCUI/AAAAAAAAKjA/nlhBxt1BaCs/s1
600/_MG_1352.JPG

 

And here are a couple that could be even darker, in the Kodak scale 9-12
range perhaps, where I think the Irish bird sits.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/5269088461/

https://www.flickr.com/photos/yambarudan/6850236860/

http://www.birdquest-tours.com/galleryImages/ai_1271238423232.jpg 

 

If based on the bird's smallish bill this bird it is said most closely
resembles an American Pacific Northwest GWG X HG (or Cook Inlet Gull) here
is a good match...

http://gull-research.org/smithsonianus/images/howell/th/096.JPG

...but for comparison on the Japanese side of the water we have this GWG...

http://www.stuartelsom.co.uk/assets/gallery/copyrightphotos/JP09-GWG01-01-09
.JPG

 

The Irish bird, whatever it is may have been cut from the same cloth as this
Danish bird which returned for consecutive winters between 2009-2012.

http://gulldk.blogspot.ie/2013/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glaucescens.htm
l

http://gulldk.blogspot.dk/2012/01/glaucous-winged-gull-larus-glaucescens.htm
l

 

Regards

 

Mike O'Keeffe

Ireland

http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-scales-a
nd-gulls.html 

 

 

-----Original Message-----
From: Lethaby, Nick [mailto:nlethaby AT ti.com] 
Sent: 07 January 2016 22:14
To: Mike O'Keeffe; BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: RE: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

 

The birds with darker wing-tips are probably mostly wintering in the
Aleutians/Bering Sea close to the breeding grounds or migrating down to the
Kuriles and Hokkaido, which isn't super far. GWGU is rare south of Hokkaido
(one sees just a few at Chosi, the famous gull site N of Tokyo). So I would
expect GWGU with darker wing-tips to molt fairly early as there is no long
migration to arrest molt for. My impression is that GWGU also molts early on
the US Pacific Coast. At least one doesn't commonly see juvenile plumage
well into mid-late winter as in Thayer's and Herring.

 

-----Original Message-----

From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification [
 mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On
Behalf Of Mike O'Keeffe

Sent: Thursday, January 07, 2016 12:57 PM

To:   BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU

Subject: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

 

Hi,

 

 

Thanks everyone for your responses.  There is no doubt that experienced
observers develop an eye and a memory muscle for judging subtle patterns and
tones of commonly observed birds in the field.  But I doubt that this field
skill is readily transferable to the assessment of tones from photos.  It
seems to me there are simply too many variables at play.  Perfectly accurate
image exposure is difficult enough to achieve at the best of times.

Exposure, lighting, dynamic range, lens focal length and relative
perspective among other parameters can all affect the capture and appearance
of subtle tones.  And those are just the ambient lighting and exposure
elements.  A bird's posture and angle relative to the camera plays an
equally important role.  So I often wonder are we fooling ourselves when we
try and gauge tonal levels so precisely from photographs.  A comparative
analysis like a grey scale tool provides some basis for a more objective,
comparative analysis than one based solely on our visual perception. 

 

 

I estimate, based on a comparative analysis using the grey scale tool, and
backed up by what I saw of the Irish bird in the field that the Irish GWG
has a mantle grey scale value close to 6 and a comparable primary pattern
grey scale value of at least 10 and probably 11 or 12.  

 

http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-scales-a
nd-gulls.html 

 

 
https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/684841790776721408  

 

 

Obviously the outer primaries are not entirely new and should be at least a
couple of month's old.  Surprisingly P7-P9 seem a tad darker than the
still-growing P10 on the right wing.  P10 is missing entirely on the left
wing.  P10 moult seems a couple of months late by standard references.  Is
this lateness ever encountered within it's normal N. American range?  Do
Asian winterers moult P10 later than N. American birds?  Or could it's
lateness simply be a reflection of the type of journey this bird may have
undergone?  Is this an example of arrested moult?  The ragged tips of its
tail and secondaries and the presence of what might be oil staining on its
lesser and marginal coverts, plus a broken P8 feather (right wing) all
suggest this bird has had a rough ride!  And it doesn't seem to be very
dominant while coming to bread at the pier either!  See photos of a nasty
attack by a young HG

 
https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/683756672913899521 

 

 

In the two main gull reference guides I found the following points of
interest.

 

 

Howell & Dunn

 

"Adult has pale grey upperparts (Kodak 5-6) with medium grey wingtips (6-8;
averaging paler on Northern populations)...".

 

Taken at face value, and assuming my analysis of grey scale is roughly
correct, this puts the Irish bird well outside the normal published range at
least for N. American GWG according to Howell and Dunn.  But it's not clear
how definitive this point is and from what studies specifically it has been
derived.  Was the study based solely on N. American birds and from what part
of the range?  Could there be an element of selective or experimental bias
trying to second-guess the hybrid element in these data sets?  One thing is
for sure - grey scale 6-8 represents a very small margin beyond concolorous
with the mantle shade - almost imperceptible in the field I should think.

The Irish bird is certainly much darker than that.

 

 

Olsen & Larsson

 

Plates on page 162 depict birds with primary tips very similar in tone to
the mantle and these are considered good GWGs.  I would have little
difficulty accepting these fall in the grey scale range 1-2 levels above
mantle shade.  Plate 179 on page 163 depicts a bird similar to or perhaps
just marginally darker-tipped than the Irish bird and it is described as
"too dark for Glaucous-winged" but again without a clear explanation as to
how that assertion was arrived at.  In the body text..."birds with (primary
pattern Kodak grey scale level) 8-12 probably of hybrid origin".  It also
mentions that for Glaucous-winged X Western hybrids the "darker wing-tip" is
"Kodak grey scale 10-12".  This again seems to be in line with the Irish
bird based on my analysis.  But again what studies are these remarks based
upon and how was the hybrid cut-off line determined.

 

 

In summary

 

The overall consensus among those from N. America who have commented it
seems (though with a few people being cautious) is that despite the bird's
fairly dark primaries the bird is considered within "the currently accepted
range" for GWG in N. America.  With no other obvious hybrid features it
seems to be a good GWG, perhaps an even better candidate from an Asian
population perspective.  Still a hybrid or back-cross cannot be totally
eliminated.  Furthermore my analysis if correct (primary grey scale 11-12)
is at odd with both the main published reference guides.  This suggests that
the perception of what is just about acceptable as a GWG among gull experts
in N.Am in terms of the Kodak scale at the moment is not in line with the
current standard reference guides, for whom a primary pattern grey-scale of

6-8 is considered the limit.  It would be really useful to know what
specific studies the 6-8 limit is based upon and was there any genetic
analysis underpinning it.  It would also be useful to know why birders
consider the acceptable range of darkness to be greater than what is
currently published.

 

 

Regards

 

 

Mike O'Keeffe

 

Ireland

 

 

 

 

This email has been scanned by BullGuard antivirus protection.

For more info visit   www.bullguard.com

 

 

Archives:  
http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html


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Subject: Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole
From: David Irons <llsdirons AT MSN.COM>
Date: Fri, 8 Jan 2016 06:58:06 +0000
Peter,

Thanks for the clarification. I presumed the typo. Easy to do when discussing a 
bunch of species and using banding code abbreviations. I can't remember if I 
have the photo saved somewhere, but a couple of weeks ago Wayne Hoffman sent me 
an open wing shot of this bird which clearly showed a shorter outermost 
secondary that seemed to be still growing in. The irregular lengths of the tail 
feathers in image #17 in the gallery suggests that some molt might be going on 
there as well. Given that this bird has been present for several weeks now, it 
seems likely that it is/has molted locally. The bird seems to be feeding almost 
exclusively on seeds (at the feeder) right now. During the time that I watched 
it this past weekend I did not see it getting any other sort of food. 


Hopefully this bird will stick long enough that we can see some additional 
transformation in its appearance and perhaps get a better handle on whether it 
is a pure Bullock's or Bullock's X ???. 


Dave Irons

> Date: Thu, 7 Jan 2016 21:49:34 -0800
> From: ppyle AT BIRDPOP.ORG
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Newport, Oregon Oriole
> To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> 
> Yes, typo, I meant BUOR. BAOR molts on the breeding grounds, a common 
> difference between western and eastern congeners.
> 
> But since it is in Oregon for the winter it's hard to know where and 
> when this individual molted. It does seem to have undergone a rather 
> complete preformative molt by this date. Birds (including BUORs) that 
> winter in Mexico or elsewhere in the tropics tend to have more 
> protracted over-winter molts, and most still show mixed juvenile and 
> formative wing coverts in January (one reason I though it an adult at 
> first). It is possible that a more rapid and complete molt occurred 
> responding to environmental cues (e.g., onset of winter) that birds 
> to the south don't face. We have lots of examples of individuals 
> within species (e.g., shorebirds) molting very differently depending 
> on their wintering latitude, and there is some incipient evidence 
> that an individual might molt differently in different years 
> depending on its location during the molting period. Thus, 
> environmental cues could be tantamount.
> 
> I could suppose that the rapid and earlier molt in this oriole could 
> have something to do with the more extensive orange underparts than 
> most SY female BUORs would show now. Perhaps many females still 
> retain juvenile lower underpart feathers in January, or that 
> later-replaced feathers are paler for some reason. On the other hand, 
> I continue to agree that the extent of orange to the underparts seems 
> surprising for an SY female BUOR in any case, and maybe the earlier 
> and more complete molt could also indicate some introgression with BAOR.
> 
> Peter
> 
> At 09:52 PM 1/6/2016, David Irons wrote:
> >Greetings All,
> >
> >I have added Wayne Hoffman's images of the Newport, Oregon oriole to 
> >the gallery that I shared yesterday. His images are #13-17.  They 
> >show the bill pattern better than my photos and I believe more 
> >accurately capture the overall color of the bird. There is one very 
> >informative rump shot, which allows to age this bird as SY (HY when 
> >first found in December). The back/rump pattern certainly seems like 
> >that of a Bullock's to my eye. The extensive yellow below still puzzles me.
> >
> >I was trying grasp exactly what Alvaro is describing in the bill 
> >pattern. It isn't easy to see where the mandible ends and the 
> >maxilla begins along the cutting edge of the bill, but it certainly 
> >seems to have an all-dark or nearly all-dark maxilla.
> >
> >In an earlier post Peter Pyle stated that,
> >"...both HOOR and BAOR undergo most/all of the preformative molt in 
> >the Mexican monsoon
> >area and return as first-spring birds in more-worn plumage than we 
> >are used to."
> >
> >I am wondering if "BAOR" was supposed to be BUOR, as it my 
> >understanding that HY Baltimores undergo preformative molt
> >before leaving the breeding grounds and Bullock's migrate south 
> >before molting.
> >
> >Dave Irons
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > > Date: Wed, 6 Jan 2016 12:49:55 -0800
> > > From: chucao AT COASTSIDE.NET
> > > Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Newport, Oregon Oriole
> > > To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> > >
> > > David,
> > > Having studied the hybrid situation in W Kansas, as an assistant to Jim 

> > > Rising some moons ago, it is pertinent to note that the hybrid zone 
between 

> > > Bullock's and Baltimore is narrow but significant. In the hybrid zone, no
> > > bird we saw was pure. Birds across the hybrid zone are clinal on average,
> > > more Bullock's like in the west part of the zone, Baltimore like in the
> > > east. However, all sorts of variations occur. What these birds look like 
as 

> > > first year, or winter females is really unknown at this point. Molt of 
the 

> > > hybrids is even wonky, with the suggestion that some hybrids may have a
> > > mixed molt between the differing strategies used by Bullock's and 
> > Baltimore.
> > > The features that are not Bullock's like in this bird, can be accounted 
for 

> > > by suggesting it may have mixed genes. Again, remember we are not talking
> > > about intermediate, F1 type hybrids, but a gene soup...sort of like Puget
> > > Sound Gull.
> > > Regards
> > > Alvaro
> > >
> > > Alvaro Jaramillo
> > > alvaro AT alvarosadventures.com
> > > www.alvarosadventures.com
> > >
> > >
> > > -----Original Message-----
> > > From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification
> > > [mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of David Irons
> > > Sent: Wednesday, January 6, 2016 9:53 AM
> > > To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> > > Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Newport, Oregon Oriole
> > >
> > > Greetings All,
> > >
> > > I would like to address the specifics of some of the responses that have
> > > been offered about this oriole.
> > >
> > > First, it has been suggested that we can infer differences in "bulk"
> > > (translated in weight measurements) by comparing the apparent size of the
> > > oriole, with the apparent size of the House Sparrow. You can't. 
> > If you put a
> > > Great Gray Owl side-by-side with a Great Horned Owl you might 
> > infer that the
> > > Great Gray would outweigh the Great Horned on the basis of their sizes
> > > (length). Great Grays average about five inches longer than Great 
Horneds, 

> > > but weigh about 3/4 of a pound less. When the photos of this oriole were
> > > taken, ambient air temps were hovering just under 40F with cold easterly
> > > winds blowing at 15-20mph. Both the House Sparrow and the oriole seem a 
bit 

> > > fluffed up when sitting on the ground.
> > >
> > > Multiple respondents have indicated that their "gut reaction" or how the
> > > bird "strikes" them in appearance is Bullock's and not Orchard, but don't
> > > necessarily explain why. We went to Newport last weekend expecting to see 
a 

> > > Bullock's Oriole. Our immediate reaction upon seeing this bird in life 
was 

> > > that it struck us as an Orchard and not a Bullock's for reasons 
> > explained in
> > > my original post. It has been suggested that the bird lacks the "cute"
> > > appearance of an Orchard and looks "fierce" in some photos. These 
> > are highly
> > > subjective terms that are unlikely to be interpreted similarly by any two
> > > people looking at these images. I might argue that the bird looks cute in
> > > the initial four images when it is sitting in the myrtle tree, but looks 
a 

> > > bit more fierce in the close-ups when it is on the feeder, which begs the
> > > question, which of these impressions is more meaningful? 
> > (probably neither).
> > >
> > >
> > > I assume that Tim Janzen took measurements from the photos in 
> > coming up with
> > > his 1.35:1 ratio of size difference between the oriole and the House
> > > Sparrow, which as he indicates would put the oriole more in the range of 
a 

> > > Bullock's in size. That said, I am always a bit wary of trying to take
> > > comparative measurements from photos, as there are all sorts of variables
> > > that can't be accounted for. In terms of size comparisons. We saw both
> > > female and immature male Red-winged Blackbirds using this same 
> > feeder. Using
> > > average measurements taken from various sources, an Orchard 
> > Oriole should be
> > > about the same size or a bit smaller than a female Red-winged and clearly
> > > smaller than a male Red-winged. The size of this bird was consistent with
> > > this expected size difference. Most measurements for Bullock's 
> > Oriole put it
> > > close to if not equal to the size (length) of a male Red-winged 
Blackbird. 

> > > As we looked at the oriole side-by-side with House Sparrows, House 
Finches, 

> > > and fairly close to White-crowned Sparrows it seemed to be closer 
> > in size to
> > > those species than it did to the male Red-winged Blackbirds that
> > > occasionally visited the feeders.
> > >
> > > Terry Bronson's comments reference the variability of the yellow noted in
> > > Birds of North America Online species account for Bullock's Oriole. I 
think 

> > > he is misinterpreting the statement in the account. Rising et al. point 
out 

> > > that the yellow is variable, not the extent of the yellow. I think this
> > > statement refers to the yellow where it normally occurs on a immature or
> > > female Bullock's and is not meant to imply that the extent of the yellow 
on 

> > > the underparts is highly variable in immature and female birds. In 
several 

> > > places in this account the belly and flanks of female and 
> > immature Bullock's
> > > are described as being "grayish white and sometimes slightly yellow."
> > > Nowhere in this account does it indicate that the underparts of a 
immature 

> > > or female Bullock's can be predominantly yellow, which is clearly the 
case 

> > > with the Newport oriole.
> > >
> > > I am the first to admit that when looking at the photos of this bird 
there 

> > > are some aspects of its appearance that do not readily fit Orchard 
Oriole. 

> > > Oregon is within the primary breeding range of Bullock's Orioles, 
> > so this is
> > > a bird that I see many many times each year. Hooded Oriole is a 
near-annual 

> > > vagrant to Oregon. I've seen this species in Oregon a number of times and
> > > I've also seen many Hoodeds in my travels to places where they occur
> > > regularly. I have seen one Orchard Oriole in Oregon, which ironically was
> > > Oregon's first, which I and some fellow birders found back in 
> > September 1980
> > > about 200 meters from where this bird is being seen. I lived for a time 
in 

> > > the Midwest, where Orchards are fairly common breeders, so I feel like I
> > > have a good basic feel for their relative size and structure. 
> > When I look at
> > > the photos of the bird in the wax myrtle (the first four images in the
> > > gallery), the bird strikes me as a pretty straightforward Orchard in 
terms 

> > > of overall color, size, head shape and bill length and shape. This view
> > > formed my earliest impression of the bird. When I look at the images of 
the 

> > > bird on the feeder and back in the courtyard, its overall appearance 
seems 

> > > more ambiguous. The most consistent and unambiguous thing about 
> > this bird is
> > > how extensively yellow or yellow-orange (if you trust the color accuracy 
of 

> > > the images) the bird on its underparts. I have not found any reference or
> > > received any authoritative feedback suggesting that a female or immature
> > > Bullock's of either sex can show this much yellow below. In the absence 
of 

> > > such evidence, I don't think that one can casually suggest that this is
> > > Bullock's Oriole without some explanation for why it is so yellow below
> > >
> > > Lastly, there have been some posts about this bird that mention "immature
> > > male" when discussing the possibility of Orchard. One post to the Oregon
> > > Birders Online listserv suggested that this bird was being called a young
> > > male Orchard. This isn't the case. At no point in my discussions of this
> > > bird with other birders present did any of us presume it to be a 
> > young male.
> > >
> > >
> > > I value the responses that I've received so far and the fact that a 
number 

> > > of folks are looking at this bird and seeing a Bullock's. As I've been
> > > writing this, some other commentary has come in and Wayne Hoffman, who 
has 

> > > also seen this bird repeatedly, privately sent me some photos that I 
think 

> > > better capture the color of the bird as I recall it from seeing it in the
> > > field. He has a rump angle shot that shows the tail feathers 
> > pretty well and
> > > a rump pattern that I think best fits Bullock's. The tail 
> > feathers are worn,
> > > brown-looking and at least some are quite pointed at the tip, which would
> > > seem to indicate that they are retained juvenile rectrices, which does 
not 

> > > mesh with Peter Pyle's thinking that this is an adult female. Even if it
> > > were, the almost entirely yellow underparts are problematic.
> > >
> > > Dave Irons
> > >
> > > Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
> > >
> > > Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
> >
> >Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
> 
> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
 		 	   		  
Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole
From: Peter Pyle <ppyle AT BIRDPOP.ORG>
Date: Thu, 7 Jan 2016 21:49:34 -0800
Yes, typo, I meant BUOR. BAOR molts on the breeding grounds, a common 
difference between western and eastern congeners.

But since it is in Oregon for the winter it's hard to know where and 
when this individual molted. It does seem to have undergone a rather 
complete preformative molt by this date. Birds (including BUORs) that 
winter in Mexico or elsewhere in the tropics tend to have more 
protracted over-winter molts, and most still show mixed juvenile and 
formative wing coverts in January (one reason I though it an adult at 
first). It is possible that a more rapid and complete molt occurred 
responding to environmental cues (e.g., onset of winter) that birds 
to the south don't face. We have lots of examples of individuals 
within species (e.g., shorebirds) molting very differently depending 
on their wintering latitude, and there is some incipient evidence 
that an individual might molt differently in different years 
depending on its location during the molting period. Thus, 
environmental cues could be tantamount.

I could suppose that the rapid and earlier molt in this oriole could 
have something to do with the more extensive orange underparts than 
most SY female BUORs would show now. Perhaps many females still 
retain juvenile lower underpart feathers in January, or that 
later-replaced feathers are paler for some reason. On the other hand, 
I continue to agree that the extent of orange to the underparts seems 
surprising for an SY female BUOR in any case, and maybe the earlier 
and more complete molt could also indicate some introgression with BAOR.

Peter

At 09:52 PM 1/6/2016, David Irons wrote:
>Greetings All,
>
>I have added Wayne Hoffman's images of the Newport, Oregon oriole to 
>the gallery that I shared yesterday. His images are #13-17.  They 
>show the bill pattern better than my photos and I believe more 
>accurately capture the overall color of the bird. There is one very 
>informative rump shot, which allows to age this bird as SY (HY when 
>first found in December). The back/rump pattern certainly seems like 
>that of a Bullock's to my eye. The extensive yellow below still puzzles me.
>
>I was trying grasp exactly what Alvaro is describing in the bill 
>pattern. It isn't easy to see where the mandible ends and the 
>maxilla begins along the cutting edge of the bill, but it certainly 
>seems to have an all-dark or nearly all-dark maxilla.
>
>In an earlier post Peter Pyle stated that,
>"...both HOOR and BAOR undergo most/all of the preformative molt in 
>the Mexican monsoon
>area and return as first-spring birds in more-worn plumage than we 
>are used to."
>
>I am wondering if "BAOR" was supposed to be BUOR, as it my 
>understanding that HY Baltimores undergo preformative molt
>before leaving the breeding grounds and Bullock's migrate south 
>before molting.
>
>Dave Irons
>
>
>
>
>
>
> > Date: Wed, 6 Jan 2016 12:49:55 -0800
> > From: chucao AT COASTSIDE.NET
> > Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Newport, Oregon Oriole
> > To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> >
> > David,
> >    Having studied the hybrid situation in W Kansas, as an assistant to Jim
> > Rising some moons ago, it is pertinent to note that the hybrid zone between
> > Bullock's and Baltimore is narrow but significant. In the hybrid zone, no
> > bird we saw was pure. Birds across the hybrid zone are clinal on average,
> > more Bullock's like in the west part of the zone, Baltimore like in the
> > east. However, all sorts of variations occur. What these birds look like as
> > first year, or winter females is really unknown at this point. Molt of the
> > hybrids is even wonky, with the suggestion that some hybrids may have a
> > mixed molt between the differing strategies used by Bullock's and 
> Baltimore.
> > The features that are not Bullock's like in this bird, can be accounted for
> > by suggesting it may have mixed genes. Again, remember we are not talking
> > about intermediate, F1 type hybrids, but a gene soup...sort of like Puget
> > Sound Gull.
> > Regards
> > Alvaro
> >
> > Alvaro Jaramillo
> > alvaro AT alvarosadventures.com
> > www.alvarosadventures.com
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification
> > [mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of David Irons
> > Sent: Wednesday, January 6, 2016 9:53 AM
> > To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> > Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Newport, Oregon Oriole
> >
> > Greetings All,
> >
> > I would like to address the specifics of some of the responses that have
> > been offered about this oriole.
> >
> > First, it has been suggested that we can infer differences in "bulk"
> > (translated in weight measurements) by comparing the apparent size of the
> > oriole, with the apparent size of the House Sparrow. You can't. 
> If you put a
> > Great Gray Owl side-by-side with a Great Horned Owl you might 
> infer that the
> > Great Gray would outweigh the Great Horned on the basis of their sizes
> > (length). Great Grays average about five inches longer than Great Horneds,
> > but weigh about 3/4 of a pound less. When the photos of this oriole were
> > taken, ambient air temps were hovering just under 40F with cold easterly
> > winds blowing at 15-20mph. Both the House Sparrow and the oriole seem a bit
> > fluffed up when sitting on the ground.
> >
> > Multiple respondents have indicated that their "gut reaction" or how the
> > bird "strikes" them in appearance is Bullock's and not Orchard, but don't
> > necessarily explain why. We went to Newport last weekend expecting to see a
> > Bullock's Oriole. Our immediate reaction upon seeing this bird in life was
> > that it struck us as an Orchard and not a Bullock's for reasons 
> explained in
> > my original post. It has been suggested that the bird lacks the "cute"
> > appearance of an Orchard and looks "fierce" in some photos. These 
> are highly
> > subjective terms that are unlikely to be interpreted similarly by any two
> > people looking at these images. I might argue that the bird looks cute in
> > the initial four images when it is sitting in the myrtle tree, but looks a
> > bit more fierce in the close-ups when it is on the feeder, which begs the
> > question, which of these impressions is more meaningful? 
> (probably neither).
> >
> >
> > I assume that Tim Janzen took measurements from the photos in 
> coming up with
> > his 1.35:1 ratio of size difference between the oriole and the House
> > Sparrow, which as he indicates would put the oriole more in the range of a
> > Bullock's in size. That said, I am always a bit wary of trying to take
> > comparative measurements from photos, as there are all sorts of variables
> > that can't be accounted for. In terms of size comparisons. We saw both
> > female and immature male Red-winged Blackbirds using this same 
> feeder. Using
> > average measurements taken from various sources, an Orchard 
> Oriole should be
> > about the same size or a bit smaller than a female Red-winged and clearly
> > smaller than a male Red-winged. The size of this bird was consistent with
> > this expected size difference. Most measurements for Bullock's 
> Oriole put it
> > close to if not equal to the size (length) of a male Red-winged Blackbird.
> > As we looked at the oriole side-by-side with House Sparrows, House Finches,
> > and fairly close to White-crowned Sparrows it seemed to be closer 
> in size to
> > those species than it did to the male Red-winged Blackbirds that
> > occasionally visited the feeders.
> >
> > Terry Bronson's comments reference the variability of the yellow noted in
> > Birds of North America Online species account for Bullock's Oriole. I think
> > he is misinterpreting the statement in the account. Rising et al. point out
> > that the yellow is variable, not the extent of the yellow. I think this
> > statement refers to the yellow where it normally occurs on a immature or
> > female Bullock's and is not meant to imply that the extent of the yellow on
> > the underparts is highly variable in immature and female birds. In several
> > places in this account the belly and flanks of female and 
> immature Bullock's
> > are described as being "grayish white and sometimes slightly yellow."
> > Nowhere in this account does it indicate that the underparts of a immature
> > or female Bullock's can be predominantly yellow, which is clearly the case
> > with the Newport oriole.
> >
> > I am the first to admit that when looking at the photos of this bird there
> > are some aspects of its appearance that do not readily fit Orchard Oriole.
> > Oregon is within the primary breeding range of Bullock's Orioles, 
> so this is
> > a bird that I see many many times each year. Hooded Oriole is a near-annual
> > vagrant to Oregon. I've seen this species in Oregon a number of times and
> > I've also seen many Hoodeds in my travels to places where they occur
> > regularly. I have seen one Orchard Oriole in Oregon, which ironically was
> > Oregon's first, which I and some fellow birders found back in 
> September 1980
> > about 200 meters from where this bird is being seen. I lived for a time in
> > the Midwest, where Orchards are fairly common breeders, so I feel like I
> > have a good basic feel for their relative size and structure. 
> When I look at
> > the photos of the bird in the wax myrtle (the first four images in the
> > gallery), the bird strikes me as a pretty straightforward Orchard in terms
> > of overall color, size, head shape and bill length and shape. This view
> > formed my earliest impression of the bird. When I look at the images of the
> > bird on the feeder and back in the courtyard, its overall appearance seems
> > more ambiguous. The most consistent and unambiguous thing about 
> this bird is
> > how extensively yellow or yellow-orange (if you trust the color accuracy of
> > the images) the bird on its underparts. I have not found any reference or
> > received any authoritative feedback suggesting that a female or immature
> > Bullock's of either sex can show this much yellow below. In the absence of
> > such evidence, I don't think that one can casually suggest that this is
> > Bullock's Oriole without some explanation for why it is so yellow below
> >
> > Lastly, there have been some posts about this bird that mention "immature
> > male" when discussing the possibility of Orchard. One post to the Oregon
> > Birders Online listserv suggested that this bird was being called a young
> > male Orchard. This isn't the case. At no point in my discussions of this
> > bird with other birders present did any of us presume it to be a 
> young male.
> >
> >
> > I value the responses that I've received so far and the fact that a number
> > of folks are looking at this bird and seeing a Bullock's. As I've been
> > writing this, some other commentary has come in and Wayne Hoffman, who has
> > also seen this bird repeatedly, privately sent me some photos that I think
> > better capture the color of the bird as I recall it from seeing it in the
> > field. He has a rump angle shot that shows the tail feathers 
> pretty well and
> > a rump pattern that I think best fits Bullock's. The tail 
> feathers are worn,
> > brown-looking and at least some are quite pointed at the tip, which would
> > seem to indicate that they are retained juvenile rectrices, which does not
> > mesh with Peter Pyle's thinking that this is an adult female. Even if it
> > were, the almost entirely yellow underparts are problematic.
> >
> > Dave Irons
> >
> > Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
> >
> > Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
>
>Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
From: "Lethaby, Nick" <nlethaby AT TI.COM>
Date: Thu, 7 Jan 2016 22:13:40 +0000
The birds with darker wing-tips are probably mostly wintering in the 
Aleutians/Bering Sea close to the breeding grounds or migrating down to the 
Kuriles and Hokkaido, which isn't super far. GWGU is rare south of Hokkaido 
(one sees just a few at Chosi, the famous gull site N of Tokyo). So I would 
expect GWGU with darker wing-tips to molt fairly early as there is no long 
migration to arrest molt for. My impression is that GWGU also molts early on 
the US Pacific Coast. At least one doesn't commonly see juvenile plumage well 
into mid-late winter as in Thayer's and Herring. 


-----Original Message-----
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification 
[mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of Mike O'Keeffe 

Sent: Thursday, January 07, 2016 12:57 PM
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

Hi,

 

Thanks everyone for your responses. There is no doubt that experienced 
observers develop an eye and a memory muscle for judging subtle patterns and 
tones of commonly observed birds in the field. But I doubt that this field 
skill is readily transferable to the assessment of tones from photos. It seems 
to me there are simply too many variables at play. Perfectly accurate image 
exposure is difficult enough to achieve at the best of times. 

Exposure, lighting, dynamic range, lens focal length and relative perspective 
among other parameters can all affect the capture and appearance of subtle 
tones. And those are just the ambient lighting and exposure elements. A bird's 
posture and angle relative to the camera plays an equally important role. So I 
often wonder are we fooling ourselves when we try and gauge tonal levels so 
precisely from photographs. A comparative analysis like a grey scale tool 
provides some basis for a more objective, comparative analysis than one based 
solely on our visual perception. 


 

I estimate, based on a comparative analysis using the grey scale tool, and 
backed up by what I saw of the Irish bird in the field that the Irish GWG has a 
mantle grey scale value close to 6 and a comparable primary pattern grey scale 
value of at least 10 and probably 11 or 12. 


http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-scales-a
nd-gulls.html

https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/684841790776721408 

 

Obviously the outer primaries are not entirely new and should be at least a 
couple of month's old. Surprisingly P7-P9 seem a tad darker than the 
still-growing P10 on the right wing. P10 is missing entirely on the left wing. 
P10 moult seems a couple of months late by standard references. Is this 
lateness ever encountered within it's normal N. American range? Do Asian 
winterers moult P10 later than N. American birds? Or could it's lateness simply 
be a reflection of the type of journey this bird may have undergone? Is this an 
example of arrested moult? The ragged tips of its tail and secondaries and the 
presence of what might be oil staining on its lesser and marginal coverts, plus 
a broken P8 feather (right wing) all suggest this bird has had a rough ride! 
And it doesn't seem to be very dominant while coming to bread at the pier 
either! See photos of a nasty attack by a young HG 

https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/683756672913899521 

 

In the two main gull reference guides I found the following points of interest.

 

Howell & Dunn

"Adult has pale grey upperparts (Kodak 5-6) with medium grey wingtips (6-8; 
averaging paler on Northern populations)...". 


Taken at face value, and assuming my analysis of grey scale is roughly correct, 
this puts the Irish bird well outside the normal published range at least for 
N. American GWG according to Howell and Dunn. But it's not clear how definitive 
this point is and from what studies specifically it has been derived. Was the 
study based solely on N. American birds and from what part of the range? Could 
there be an element of selective or experimental bias trying to second-guess 
the hybrid element in these data sets? One thing is for sure - grey scale 6-8 
represents a very small margin beyond concolorous with the mantle shade - 
almost imperceptible in the field I should think. 

The Irish bird is certainly much darker than that.

 

Olsen & Larsson

Plates on page 162 depict birds with primary tips very similar in tone to the 
mantle and these are considered good GWGs. I would have little difficulty 
accepting these fall in the grey scale range 1-2 levels above mantle shade. 
Plate 179 on page 163 depicts a bird similar to or perhaps just marginally 
darker-tipped than the Irish bird and it is described as "too dark for 
Glaucous-winged" but again without a clear explanation as to how that assertion 
was arrived at. In the body text..."birds with (primary pattern Kodak grey 
scale level) 8-12 probably of hybrid origin". It also mentions that for 
Glaucous-winged X Western hybrids the "darker wing-tip" is "Kodak grey scale 
10-12". This again seems to be in line with the Irish bird based on my 
analysis. But again what studies are these remarks based upon and how was the 
hybrid cut-off line determined. 


 

In summary

The overall consensus among those from N. America who have commented it seems 
(though with a few people being cautious) is that despite the bird's fairly 
dark primaries the bird is considered within "the currently accepted range" for 
GWG in N. America. With no other obvious hybrid features it seems to be a good 
GWG, perhaps an even better candidate from an Asian population perspective. 
Still a hybrid or back-cross cannot be totally eliminated. Furthermore my 
analysis if correct (primary grey scale 11-12) is at odd with both the main 
published reference guides. This suggests that the perception of what is just 
about acceptable as a GWG among gull experts in N.Am in terms of the Kodak 
scale at the moment is not in line with the current standard reference guides, 
for whom a primary pattern grey-scale of 

6-8 is considered the limit. It would be really useful to know what specific 
studies the 6-8 limit is based upon and was there any genetic analysis 
underpinning it. It would also be useful to know why birders consider the 
acceptable range of darkness to be greater than what is currently published. 


 

Regards

 

Mike O'Keeffe

Ireland

 

 


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Subject: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
From: "Mike O'Keeffe" <okeeffeml AT EIRCOM.NET>
Date: Thu, 7 Jan 2016 20:57:10 +0000
Hi,

 

Thanks everyone for your responses.  There is no doubt that experienced
observers develop an eye and a memory muscle for judging subtle patterns and
tones of commonly observed birds in the field.  But I doubt that this field
skill is readily transferable to the assessment of tones from photos.  It
seems to me there are simply too many variables at play.  Perfectly accurate
image exposure is difficult enough to achieve at the best of times.
Exposure, lighting, dynamic range, lens focal length and relative
perspective among other parameters can all affect the capture and appearance
of subtle tones.  And those are just the ambient lighting and exposure
elements.  A bird's posture and angle relative to the camera plays an
equally important role.  So I often wonder are we fooling ourselves when we
try and gauge tonal levels so precisely from photographs.  A comparative
analysis like a grey scale tool provides some basis for a more objective,
comparative analysis than one based solely on our visual perception. 

 

I estimate, based on a comparative analysis using the grey scale tool, and
backed up by what I saw of the Irish bird in the field that the Irish GWG
has a mantle grey scale value close to 6 and a comparable primary pattern
grey scale value of at least 10 and probably 11 or 12.  

http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-scales-a
nd-gulls.html

https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/684841790776721408 

 

Obviously the outer primaries are not entirely new and should be at least a
couple of month's old.  Surprisingly P7-P9 seem a tad darker than the
still-growing P10 on the right wing.  P10 is missing entirely on the left
wing.  P10 moult seems a couple of months late by standard references.  Is
this lateness ever encountered within it's normal N. American range?  Do
Asian winterers moult P10 later than N. American birds?  Or could it's
lateness simply be a reflection of the type of journey this bird may have
undergone?  Is this an example of arrested moult?  The ragged tips of its
tail and secondaries and the presence of what might be oil staining on its
lesser and marginal coverts, plus a broken P8 feather (right wing) all
suggest this bird has had a rough ride!  And it doesn't seem to be very
dominant while coming to bread at the pier either!  See photos of a nasty
attack by a young HG
https://twitter.com/okeeffeml/status/683756672913899521 

 

In the two main gull reference guides I found the following points of
interest.

 

Howell & Dunn

"Adult has pale grey upperparts (Kodak 5-6) with medium grey wingtips (6-8;
averaging paler on Northern populations)...".

Taken at face value, and assuming my analysis of grey scale is roughly
correct, this puts the Irish bird well outside the normal published range at
least for N. American GWG according to Howell and Dunn.  But it's not clear
how definitive this point is and from what studies specifically it has been
derived.  Was the study based solely on N. American birds and from what part
of the range?  Could there be an element of selective or experimental bias
trying to second-guess the hybrid element in these data sets?  One thing is
for sure - grey scale 6-8 represents a very small margin beyond concolorous
with the mantle shade - almost imperceptible in the field I should think.
The Irish bird is certainly much darker than that.

 

Olsen & Larsson

Plates on page 162 depict birds with primary tips very similar in tone to
the mantle and these are considered good GWGs.  I would have little
difficulty accepting these fall in the grey scale range 1-2 levels above
mantle shade.  Plate 179 on page 163 depicts a bird similar to or perhaps
just marginally darker-tipped than the Irish bird and it is described as
"too dark for Glaucous-winged" but again without a clear explanation as to
how that assertion was arrived at.  In the body text..."birds with (primary
pattern Kodak grey scale level) 8-12 probably of hybrid origin".  It also
mentions that for Glaucous-winged X Western hybrids the "darker wing-tip" is
"Kodak grey scale 10-12".  This again seems to be in line with the Irish
bird based on my analysis.  But again what studies are these remarks based
upon and how was the hybrid cut-off line determined.

 

In summary

The overall consensus among those from N. America who have commented it
seems (though with a few people being cautious) is that despite the bird's
fairly dark primaries the bird is considered within "the currently accepted
range" for GWG in N. America.  With no other obvious hybrid features it
seems to be a good GWG, perhaps an even better candidate from an Asian
population perspective.  Still a hybrid or back-cross cannot be totally
eliminated.  Furthermore my analysis if correct (primary grey scale 11-12)
is at odd with both the main published reference guides.  This suggests that
the perception of what is just about acceptable as a GWG among gull experts
in N.Am in terms of the Kodak scale at the moment is not in line with the
current standard reference guides, for whom a primary pattern grey-scale of
6-8 is considered the limit.  It would be really useful to know what
specific studies the 6-8 limit is based upon and was there any genetic
analysis underpinning it.  It would also be useful to know why birders
consider the acceptable range of darkness to be greater than what is
currently published.

 

Regards

 

Mike O'Keeffe

Ireland

 

 


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Subject: Swfts in Gaiensivlle Florida
From: Andy Kratter <kratter AT FLMNH.UFL.EDU>
Date: Thu, 7 Jan 2016 13:06:04 -0600
Since late November, a group of 14-16 swifts has been roosting nightly in a
chimney on the University of Florida campus. The birds often vocalize before
entering the chimney while milling about over the site.  Tom Webber and I
have good recordings, and they show the acoustic characteristics of Vaux's
Swifts, which have previously been verified wintering in north Florida (see
Webber and Collins,
http://www.fosbirds.org/sites/default/files/FFNs/FFNv23n2p25-29Webber.pdf).
The vocalizations include sharp chip notes interspersed or terminating with
inflected tones.  On several days at least one bird has been giving what we
think is a more typical Chimney Swift vocalization, a series of sharp chip
notes (which are similar to the chip notes of Vaux's),but lacking the
inflected tones and terminal trill endings of Vaux's. Some observers have
reported that one swift in the flock appears to be a bit larger and have a
more soaring, less choppy flight. We can find no evidence (xeno-canto,
Cornell,etc.) of Vaux's Swifts lacking the characteristic inflected tones
and trills.  Chimney Swift has never been documented to winter in Florida,
so confirmation of this would be great. Our question to those in the
readership who have more experience with Vaux's Swifts: do Vaux's Swifts
ever give series of sharp chip notes lacking the characteristic other
acoustic elements?
Many thanks,
Andy Kratter
Gaineville, Florida

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole
From: Alvaro Jaramillo <chucao AT COASTSIDE.NET>
Date: Wed, 6 Jan 2016 22:18:32 -0800
David, 

   The last photo (17) shows some interesting features. The inner greater
coverts are distinctly grayish. That is a definite Bullock's feature. The
short tail and fat body, again Bullock's. Bill - mandible is essentially all
pale, with it bleeding into the maxilla, definite Bullock's-Baltimore. Dark
lores, dark eyeline, and distinct supercilium. All Bullock's. 

http://www.birdfellow.com/photos/thumbnails/954-newport-oregon-oriole-jan-1-
2-2016?id=13454

  

Still, why does it look like this? Crazy stuff. 

Alvaro 

 

Alvaro Jaramillo

alvaro AT alvarosadventure  s.com

www.alvarosadventures.com

 

From: David Irons [mailto:llsdirons AT msn.com] 
Sent: Wednesday, January 6, 2016 9:52 PM
To: Alvaro Jaramillo ; birdwg01 AT listserv.ksu.edu
Subject: RE: [BIRDWG01] Newport, Oregon Oriole

 

Greetings All,

I have added Wayne Hoffman's images of the Newport, Oregon oriole to the
gallery that I shared yesterday. His images are #13-17.  They show the bill
pattern better than my photos and I believe more accurately capture the
overall color of the bird. There is one very informative rump shot, which
allows to age this bird as SY (HY when first found in December). The
back/rump pattern certainly seems like that of a Bullock's to my eye. The
extensive yellow below still puzzles me. 

I was trying grasp exactly what Alvaro is describing in the bill pattern. It
isn't easy to see where the mandible ends and the maxilla begins along the
cutting edge of the bill, but it certainly seems to have an all-dark or
nearly all-dark maxilla. 

In an earlier post Peter Pyle stated that, 

"...both HOOR and BAOR undergo most/all of the preformative molt in the
Mexican monsoon 
area and return as first-spring birds in more-worn plumage than we are used
to."

I am wondering if "BAOR" was supposed to be BUOR, as it my understanding
that HY Baltimores undergo preformative molt 
before leaving the breeding grounds and Bullock's migrate south before
molting.

Dave Irons 





 

> Date: Wed, 6 Jan 2016 12:49:55 -0800
> From: chucao AT COASTSIDE.NET  
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Newport, Oregon Oriole
> To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU  
> 
> David, 
> Having studied the hybrid situation in W Kansas, as an assistant to Jim
> Rising some moons ago, it is pertinent to note that the hybrid zone
between
> Bullock's and Baltimore is narrow but significant. In the hybrid zone, no
> bird we saw was pure. Birds across the hybrid zone are clinal on average,
> more Bullock's like in the west part of the zone, Baltimore like in the
> east. However, all sorts of variations occur. What these birds look like
as
> first year, or winter females is really unknown at this point. Molt of the
> hybrids is even wonky, with the suggestion that some hybrids may have a
> mixed molt between the differing strategies used by Bullock's and
Baltimore.
> The features that are not Bullock's like in this bird, can be accounted
for
> by suggesting it may have mixed genes. Again, remember we are not talking
> about intermediate, F1 type hybrids, but a gene soup...sort of like Puget
> Sound Gull. 
> Regards
> Alvaro 
> 
> Alvaro Jaramillo
> alvaro AT alvarosadventures.com  
> www.alvarosadventures.com  
> 
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification
> [mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of David Irons
> Sent: Wednesday, January 6, 2016 9:53 AM
> To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU  
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Newport, Oregon Oriole
> 
> Greetings All,
> 
> I would like to address the specifics of some of the responses that have
> been offered about this oriole. 
> 
> First, it has been suggested that we can infer differences in "bulk"
> (translated in weight measurements) by comparing the apparent size of the
> oriole, with the apparent size of the House Sparrow. You can't. If you put
a
> Great Gray Owl side-by-side with a Great Horned Owl you might infer that
the
> Great Gray would outweigh the Great Horned on the basis of their sizes
> (length). Great Grays average about five inches longer than Great Horneds,
> but weigh about 3/4 of a pound less. When the photos of this oriole were
> taken, ambient air temps were hovering just under 40F with cold easterly
> winds blowing at 15-20mph. Both the House Sparrow and the oriole seem a
bit
> fluffed up when sitting on the ground. 
> 
> Multiple respondents have indicated that their "gut reaction" or how the
> bird "strikes" them in appearance is Bullock's and not Orchard, but don't
> necessarily explain why. We went to Newport last weekend expecting to see
a
> Bullock's Oriole. Our immediate reaction upon seeing this bird in life was
> that it struck us as an Orchard and not a Bullock's for reasons explained
in
> my original post. It has been suggested that the bird lacks the "cute"
> appearance of an Orchard and looks "fierce" in some photos. These are
highly
> subjective terms that are unlikely to be interpreted similarly by any two
> people looking at these images. I might argue that the bird looks cute in
> the initial four images when it is sitting in the myrtle tree, but looks a
> bit more fierce in the close-ups when it is on the feeder, which begs the
> question, which of these impressions is more meaningful? (probably
neither).
> 
> 
> I assume that Tim Janzen took measurements from the photos in coming up
with
> his 1.35:1 ratio of size difference between the oriole and the House
> Sparrow, which as he indicates would put the oriole more in the range of a
> Bullock's in size. That said, I am always a bit wary of trying to take
> comparative measurements from photos, as there are all sorts of variables
> that can't be accounted for. In terms of size comparisons. We saw both
> female and immature male Red-winged Blackbirds using this same feeder.
Using
> average measurements taken from various sources, an Orchard Oriole should
be
> about the same size or a bit smaller than a female Red-winged and clearly
> smaller than a male Red-winged. The size of this bird was consistent with
> this expected size difference. Most measurements for Bullock's Oriole put
it
> close to if not equal to the size (length) of a male Red-winged Blackbird.
> As we looked at the oriole side-by-side with House Sparrows, House
Finches,
> and fairly close to White-crowned Sparrows it seemed to be closer in size
to
> those species than it did to the male Red-winged Blackbirds that
> occasionally visited the feeders. 
> 
> Terry Bronson's comments reference the variability of the yellow noted in
> Birds of North America Online species account for Bullock's Oriole. I
think
> he is misinterpreting the statement in the account. Rising et al. point
out
> that the yellow is variable, not the extent of the yellow. I think this
> statement refers to the yellow where it normally occurs on a immature or
> female Bullock's and is not meant to imply that the extent of the yellow
on
> the underparts is highly variable in immature and female birds. In several
> places in this account the belly and flanks of female and immature
Bullock's
> are described as being "grayish white and sometimes slightly yellow."
> Nowhere in this account does it indicate that the underparts of a immature
> or female Bullock's can be predominantly yellow, which is clearly the case
> with the Newport oriole. 
> 
> I am the first to admit that when looking at the photos of this bird there
> are some aspects of its appearance that do not readily fit Orchard Oriole.
> Oregon is within the primary breeding range of Bullock's Orioles, so this
is
> a bird that I see many many times each year. Hooded Oriole is a
near-annual
> vagrant to Oregon. I've seen this species in Oregon a number of times and
> I've also seen many Hoodeds in my travels to places where they occur
> regularly. I have seen one Orchard Oriole in Oregon, which ironically was
> Oregon's first, which I and some fellow birders found back in September
1980
> about 200 meters from where this bird is being seen. I lived for a time in
> the Midwest, where Orchards are fairly common breeders, so I feel like I
> have a good basic feel for their relative size and structure. When I look
at
> the photos of the bird in the wax myrtle (the first four images in the
> gallery), the bird strikes me as a pretty straightforward Orchard in terms
> of overall color, size, head shape and bill length and shape. This view
> formed my earliest impression of the bird. When I look at the images of
the
> bird on the feeder and back in the courtyard, its overall appearance seems
> more ambiguous. The most consistent and unambiguous thing about this bird
is
> how extensively yellow or yellow-orange (if you trust the color accuracy
of
> the images) the bird on its underparts. I have not found any reference or
> received any authoritative feedback suggesting that a female or immature
> Bullock's of either sex can show this much yellow below. In the absence of
> such evidence, I don't think that one can casually suggest that this is
> Bullock's Oriole without some explanation for why it is so yellow below
> 
> Lastly, there have been some posts about this bird that mention "immature
> male" when discussing the possibility of Orchard. One post to the Oregon
> Birders Online listserv suggested that this bird was being called a young
> male Orchard. This isn't the case. At no point in my discussions of this
> bird with other birders present did any of us presume it to be a young
male.
> 
> 
> I value the responses that I've received so far and the fact that a number
> of folks are looking at this bird and seeing a Bullock's. As I've been
> writing this, some other commentary has come in and Wayne Hoffman, who has
> also seen this bird repeatedly, privately sent me some photos that I think
> better capture the color of the bird as I recall it from seeing it in the
> field. He has a rump angle shot that shows the tail feathers pretty well
and
> a rump pattern that I think best fits Bullock's. The tail feathers are
worn,
> brown-looking and at least some are quite pointed at the tip, which would
> seem to indicate that they are retained juvenile rectrices, which does not
> mesh with Peter Pyle's thinking that this is an adult female. Even if it
> were, the almost entirely yellow underparts are problematic. 
> 
> Dave Irons
> 
> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
> 
> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html


Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole
From: David Irons <llsdirons AT MSN.COM>
Date: Thu, 7 Jan 2016 05:52:23 +0000
Greetings All,

I have added Wayne Hoffman's images of the Newport, Oregon oriole to the 
gallery that I shared yesterday. His images are #13-17. They show the bill 
pattern better than my photos and I believe more accurately capture the overall 
color of the bird. There is one very informative rump shot, which allows to age 
this bird as SY (HY when first found in December). The back/rump pattern 
certainly seems like that of a Bullock's to my eye. The extensive yellow below 
still puzzles me. 


I was trying grasp exactly what Alvaro is describing in the bill pattern. It 
isn't easy to see where the mandible ends and the maxilla begins along the 
cutting edge of the bill, but it certainly seems to have an all-dark or nearly 
all-dark maxilla. 


In an earlier post Peter Pyle stated that, 
"...both HOOR and BAOR undergo most/all of the preformative molt in the Mexican 
monsoon 

area and return as first-spring birds in more-worn plumage than we are used 
to." 


I am wondering if "BAOR" was supposed to be BUOR, as it my understanding that 
HY Baltimores undergo preformative molt 

before leaving the breeding grounds and Bullock's migrate south before molting.

Dave Irons 




 

> Date: Wed, 6 Jan 2016 12:49:55 -0800
> From: chucao AT COASTSIDE.NET
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Newport, Oregon Oriole
> To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> 
> David, 
>    Having studied the hybrid situation in W Kansas, as an assistant to Jim
> Rising some moons ago, it is pertinent to note that the hybrid zone between
> Bullock's and Baltimore is narrow but significant. In the hybrid zone, no
> bird we saw was pure. Birds across the hybrid zone are clinal on average,
> more Bullock's like in the west part of the zone, Baltimore like in the
> east. However, all sorts of variations occur. What these birds look like as
> first year, or winter females is really unknown at this point. Molt of the
> hybrids is even wonky, with the suggestion that some hybrids may have a
> mixed molt between the differing strategies used by Bullock's and Baltimore.
> The features that are not Bullock's like in this bird, can be accounted for
> by suggesting it may have mixed genes. Again, remember we are not talking
> about intermediate, F1 type hybrids, but a gene soup...sort of like Puget
> Sound Gull. 
> Regards
> Alvaro 
> 
> Alvaro Jaramillo
> alvaro AT alvarosadventures.com
> www.alvarosadventures.com
> 
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification
> [mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of David Irons
> Sent: Wednesday, January 6, 2016 9:53 AM
> To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Newport, Oregon Oriole
> 
> Greetings All,
> 
> I would like to address the specifics of some of the responses that have
> been offered about this oriole. 
> 
> First, it has been suggested that we can infer differences in "bulk"
> (translated in weight measurements) by comparing the apparent size of the
> oriole, with the apparent size of the House Sparrow. You can't. If you put a
> Great Gray Owl side-by-side with a Great Horned Owl you might infer that the
> Great Gray would outweigh the Great Horned on the basis of their sizes
> (length). Great Grays average about five inches longer than Great Horneds,
> but weigh about 3/4 of a pound less. When the photos of this oriole were
> taken, ambient air temps were hovering just under 40F with cold easterly
> winds blowing at 15-20mph. Both the House Sparrow and the oriole seem a bit
> fluffed up when sitting on the ground.  
> 
> Multiple respondents have indicated that their "gut reaction" or how the
> bird "strikes" them in appearance is Bullock's and not Orchard, but don't
> necessarily explain why. We went to Newport last weekend expecting to see a
> Bullock's Oriole. Our immediate reaction upon seeing this bird in life was
> that it struck us as an Orchard and not a Bullock's for reasons explained in
> my original post. It has been suggested that the bird lacks the "cute"
> appearance of an Orchard and looks "fierce" in some photos. These are highly
> subjective terms that are unlikely to be interpreted similarly by any two
> people looking at these images. I might argue that the bird looks cute in
> the initial four images when it is sitting in the myrtle tree, but looks a
> bit more fierce in the close-ups when it is on the feeder, which begs the
> question, which of these impressions is more meaningful? (probably neither).
> 
> 
> I assume that Tim Janzen took measurements from the photos in coming up with
> his 1.35:1 ratio of size difference between the oriole and the House
> Sparrow, which as he indicates would put the oriole more in the range of a
> Bullock's in size. That said, I am always a bit wary of trying to take
> comparative measurements from photos, as there are all sorts of variables
> that can't be accounted for. In terms of size comparisons. We saw both
> female and immature male Red-winged Blackbirds using this same feeder. Using
> average measurements taken from various sources, an Orchard Oriole should be
> about the same size or a bit smaller than a female Red-winged and clearly
> smaller than a male Red-winged. The size of this bird was consistent with
> this expected size difference. Most measurements for Bullock's Oriole put it
> close to if not equal to the size (length) of a male Red-winged Blackbird.
> As we looked at the oriole side-by-side with House Sparrows, House Finches,
> and fairly close to White-crowned Sparrows it seemed to be closer in size to
> those species than it did to the male Red-winged Blackbirds that
> occasionally visited the feeders. 
> 
> Terry Bronson's comments reference the variability of the yellow noted in
> Birds of North America Online species account for Bullock's Oriole. I think
> he is misinterpreting the statement in the account. Rising et al. point out
> that the yellow is variable, not the extent of the yellow. I think this
> statement refers to the yellow where it normally occurs on a immature or
> female Bullock's and is not meant to imply that the extent of the yellow on
> the underparts is highly variable in immature and female birds. In several
> places in this account the belly and flanks of female and immature Bullock's
> are described as being "grayish white and sometimes slightly yellow."
> Nowhere in this account does it indicate that the underparts of a immature
> or female Bullock's can be predominantly yellow, which is clearly the case
> with the Newport oriole. 
> 
> I am the first to admit that when looking at the photos of this bird there
> are some aspects of its appearance that do not readily fit Orchard Oriole.
> Oregon is within the primary breeding range of Bullock's Orioles, so this is
> a bird that I see many many times each year. Hooded Oriole is a near-annual
> vagrant to Oregon. I've seen this species in Oregon a number of times and
> I've also seen many Hoodeds in my travels to places where they occur
> regularly. I have seen one Orchard Oriole in Oregon, which ironically was
> Oregon's first, which I and some fellow birders found back in September 1980
> about 200 meters from where this bird is being seen. I lived for a time in
> the Midwest, where Orchards are fairly common breeders, so I feel like I
> have a good basic feel for their relative size and structure. When I look at
> the photos of the bird in the wax myrtle (the first four images in the
> gallery), the bird strikes me as a pretty straightforward Orchard in terms
> of overall color, size, head shape and bill length and shape. This view
> formed my earliest impression of the bird. When I look at the images of the
> bird on the feeder and back in the courtyard, its overall appearance seems
> more ambiguous. The most consistent and unambiguous thing about this bird is
> how extensively yellow or yellow-orange (if you trust the color accuracy of
> the images) the bird on its underparts. I have not found any reference or
> received any authoritative feedback suggesting that a female or immature
> Bullock's of either sex can show this much yellow below. In the absence of
> such evidence, I don't think that one can casually suggest that this is
> Bullock's Oriole without some explanation for why it is so yellow below
> 
> Lastly, there have been some posts about this bird that mention "immature
> male" when discussing the possibility of Orchard. One post to the Oregon
> Birders Online listserv suggested that this bird was being called a young
> male Orchard. This isn't the case. At no point in my discussions of this
> bird with other birders present did any of us presume it to be a young male.
> 
> 
> I value the responses that I've received so far and the fact that a number
> of folks are looking at this bird and seeing a Bullock's. As I've been
> writing this, some other commentary has come in and Wayne Hoffman, who has
> also seen this bird repeatedly, privately sent me some photos that I think
> better capture the color of the bird as I recall it from seeing it in the
> field. He has a rump angle shot that shows the tail feathers pretty well and
> a rump pattern that I think best fits Bullock's. The tail feathers are worn,
> brown-looking and at least some are quite pointed at the tip, which would
> seem to indicate that they are retained juvenile rectrices, which does not
> mesh with Peter Pyle's thinking that this is an adult female. Even if it
> were, the almost entirely yellow underparts are problematic. 
> 
> Dave Irons
>  		 	   		  
> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
> 
> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
 		 	   		  
Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Newport Oriole, updated photo gallery
From: David Irons <llsdirons AT MSN.COM>
Date: Thu, 7 Jan 2016 05:54:36 +0000
Sorry, I forgot to paste in the link to the photo gallery with Wayne Hoffman's 
images added. His photos are #13-17 on page two of the gallery. 


http://www.birdfellow.com/photos/gallery/954-newport-oregon-oriole-jan-1-2-2016

Dave Irons
 		 	   		  
Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
From: Steve Hampton <stevechampton AT GMAIL.COM>
Date: Wed, 6 Jan 2016 21:03:27 -0800
The primary tips are certainly darker that apparent "pure" Gl-W in Homer
and Seward; this bird would stand out there.  That said, everything else
about it (head, breast, bill, shape, etc.) seem perfect for Gl-W.  Is
anyone detecting any signs of Herring (beyond the primary tips)?

Nick's comments re: Japan Gl-W are interesting and perhaps provide an
explanation.





On Wed, Jan 6, 2016 at 3:01 PM, Lethaby, Nick  wrote:

> Mike,
>
> There is quite a bit of variation in GWGU primary tip tone. It's
> impossible to know exactly how dark a pure GWGU can be because they
> hybridize with other species at multiple points in their range. Having said
> that, birds wintering in Japan, which presumably originate from the
> Aleutians, have definitely darker wing-tips than the vast majority of birds
> I see in California. The Japanese birds are pretty consistent in appearance
> and hybridization with Slaty-backed Gull seems limited, based on looking at
> the respective mantle colors of thousands of birds.
>
> So the Irish bird is within the normal range of variation of GWGU,
> although certainly at the dark extreme.
>
> Nick
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification [mailto:
> BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of Mike O'Keeffe
> Sent: Wednesday, January 06, 2016 11:32 AM
> To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
> Subject: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
>
> Greetings all,
>
> Irish birders are currently enjoying views of what appears to be our first
> ever Glaucous-winged Gull.  I have put up some images and discussion on my
> blog (link below).
>
> Aside from the obvious question, what do birders in N. America think of
> the Irish bird? I have another question for this esteemed forum.  Has the
> Kodak Grey Scale ever been applied to the primary pattern of
> Glaucous-winged Gull and if so at what Kodak Grey Scale Level are we
> entering the realm of probable 1st generation hybrid?  I am asking this
> because I know the Irish bird is certainly approaching the dark end of the
> scale for GWG.  But I'd like to think that a subjective analysis of the
> wing tip tones could be replaced with something a bit more objective.  I
> have seen birds as dark winged as the Irish bird in Vancouver but I
> couldn't rule out the possibility that these were hybrids.
>
> I believe the Grey Scale method proposed in the blog could be of some use
> here, though with certain caveats including lighting and contrast
> conditions.
>
> Hoping to hear from the laridophiles.
>
>
> http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-scales-a
> nd-gulls.html
>
> Regards
>
> Mike O'Keeffe
> Ireland
>
>
> This email has been scanned by BullGuard antivirus protection.
> For more info visit www.bullguard.com
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> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
>
> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
>



-- 
Steve Hampton
Davis, CA

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Subject: hummers
From: Ron Maertz <hadada AT CENTURYTEL.NET>
Date: Wed, 6 Jan 2016 15:17:33 -0800
Hi 
I would like to share some pics thru Flickr that I took in late Sept at Morongo 
Valley,California. I would like a second opinion on correct ID. You can either 
respond to my email or to the list. 

Thanks
Ron Maertz
Glide. Or

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Subject: Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
From: "Lethaby, Nick" <nlethaby AT TI.COM>
Date: Wed, 6 Jan 2016 23:01:59 +0000
Mike,

There is quite a bit of variation in GWGU primary tip tone. It's impossible to 
know exactly how dark a pure GWGU can be because they hybridize with other 
species at multiple points in their range. Having said that, birds wintering in 
Japan, which presumably originate from the Aleutians, have definitely darker 
wing-tips than the vast majority of birds I see in California. The Japanese 
birds are pretty consistent in appearance and hybridization with Slaty-backed 
Gull seems limited, based on looking at the respective mantle colors of 
thousands of birds. 


So the Irish bird is within the normal range of variation of GWGU, although 
certainly at the dark extreme. 


Nick

-----Original Message-----
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification 
[mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of Mike O'Keeffe 

Sent: Wednesday, January 06, 2016 11:32 AM
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

Greetings all,

Irish birders are currently enjoying views of what appears to be our first ever 
Glaucous-winged Gull. I have put up some images and discussion on my blog (link 
below). 


Aside from the obvious question, what do birders in N. America think of the 
Irish bird? I have another question for this esteemed forum. Has the Kodak Grey 
Scale ever been applied to the primary pattern of Glaucous-winged Gull and if 
so at what Kodak Grey Scale Level are we entering the realm of probable 1st 
generation hybrid? I am asking this because I know the Irish bird is certainly 
approaching the dark end of the scale for GWG. But I'd like to think that a 
subjective analysis of the wing tip tones could be replaced with something a 
bit more objective. I have seen birds as dark winged as the Irish bird in 
Vancouver but I couldn't rule out the possibility that these were hybrids. 


I believe the Grey Scale method proposed in the blog could be of some use here, 
though with certain caveats including lighting and contrast conditions. 


Hoping to hear from the laridophiles.

http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-scales-a
nd-gulls.html

Regards

Mike O'Keeffe
Ireland


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Subject: Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
From: David Irons <llsdirons AT MSN.COM>
Date: Wed, 6 Jan 2016 14:32:24 -0800
From a Pacific NW perspective, I am troubled by the darker primary tips. Amar, 
without delving into the archives to find past thoughts on this, I am curious 
what lead you to abandon the idea that the gray in the primary tips of a "pure" 
Glaucous-winged Gull should match or approximate the gray on the rest of the 
upper parts? Perhaps misguidedly, I continue to use this as a criteria in 
separating GWGU from birds at the pale end of the 'Olympic Gull' cline. Despite 
the abundance of GWGU X WEGU in our region, there are still lots of adult birds 
that meet this criteria. 


Dave Irons
Portland, OR

Sent from my iPhone

> On Jan 6, 2016, at 1:27 PM, Amar Ayyash  wrote:
> 
> Mike and all, I posed this question regarding "darkness of primaries" on
> pure Glaucous-wingeds a few years ago, right here on this list. I received
> several responses with mixed opinions. I can say with some confidence that
> there is no peer-reviewed paper that has addressed this subject with any
> seriousness. The level of gene flow associated with this species in the
> North Pacific makes measuring this a monumental task. It appears, to my
> knowledge, that this is another "gray area" with our large gulls.
> 
> Some will be okay with the apparent darkness in primary tips shown by the
> Irish gull, so long as everything else matches (i.e., gray upperparts,
> pattern of head streaking, orbital color, size/structure). On the other
> hand, I know of birders that will suspect mixed genes in an adult that
> doesn't have primary tips that are the same - or nearly the same - color as
> the gray upperparts (an approach I once held but have since given up on).
> 
> It will be interesting to see what becomes of this record.
> 
> 
> Best wishes,
> Amar Ayyash
> Frankfort IL, USA
> 
> www.anythinglarus.com
> 
> 
>> On Wed, Jan 6, 2016 at 1:31 PM, Mike O'Keeffe  wrote:
>> 
>> Greetings all,
>> 
>> Irish birders are currently enjoying views of what appears to be our first
>> ever Glaucous-winged Gull.  I have put up some images and discussion on my
>> blog (link below).
>> 
>> Aside from the obvious question, what do birders in N. America think of the
>> Irish bird? I have another question for this esteemed forum.  Has the Kodak
>> Grey Scale ever been applied to the primary pattern of Glaucous-winged Gull
>> and if so at what Kodak Grey Scale Level are we entering the realm of
>> probable 1st generation hybrid?  I am asking this because I know the Irish
>> bird is certainly approaching the dark end of the scale for GWG.  But I'd
>> like to think that a subjective analysis of the wing tip tones could be
>> replaced with something a bit more objective.  I have seen birds as dark
>> winged as the Irish bird in Vancouver but I couldn't rule out the
>> possibility that these were hybrids.
>> 
>> I believe the Grey Scale method proposed in the blog could be of some use
>> here, though with certain caveats including lighting and contrast
>> conditions.
>> 
>> Hoping to hear from the laridophiles.
>> 
>> 
>> http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-scales-a
>> nd-gulls.html
>> 
>> Regards
>> 
>> Mike O'Keeffe
>> Ireland
>> 
>> 
>> This email has been scanned by BullGuard antivirus protection.
>> For more info visit www.bullguard.com
>> 
>> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
> 
> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html

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Subject: Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
From: Alvaro Jaramillo <chucao AT COASTSIDE.NET>
Date: Wed, 6 Jan 2016 13:55:33 -0800
Exactly as Amar says, nothing definitive on how dark Glaucous-winged can be on 
the primaries. The issue is complicated. You may say, well why not just look at 
Glaucous-winged in Alaska away from the hybrid zone? Well there you can have 
Herring genes in some birds, or Glaucous genes on others depending on where you 
sample. You could indeed take a summer sample from let's say Homer, Alaska and 
assess what is average and common there and that will give you a good idea of 
what the range may be in Glaucous-winged; but the extremes that you may exclude 
because they are outliers in the distribution, well you never know if they are 
pure or mixed genes! Another approach may be to look at Glaucous-wings from 
Japan, I do not know these birds, but photos suggest that they are on average 
darker than our birds here in North America. It is a mess. 

 Having said all that, I would have put your Irish bird down as a 
Glaucous-winged if I saw it in winter in California. 


Regards
Alvaro
Alvaro Jaramillo
alvaro AT alvarosadventures.com
www.alvarosadventures.com


-----Original Message-----
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification 
[mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of Amar Ayyash 

Sent: Wednesday, January 6, 2016 1:03 PM
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

Mike and all, I posed this question regarding "darkness of primaries" on pure 
Glaucous-wingeds a few years ago, right here on this list. I received several 
responses with mixed opinions. I can say with some confidence that there is no 
peer-reviewed paper that has addressed this subject with any seriousness. The 
level of gene flow associated with this species in the North Pacific makes 
measuring this a monumental task. It appears, to my knowledge, that this is 
another "gray area" with our large gulls. 


Some will be okay with the apparent darkness in primary tips shown by the Irish 
gull, so long as everything else matches (i.e., gray upperparts, pattern of 
head streaking, orbital color, size/structure). On the other hand, I know of 
birders that will suspect mixed genes in an adult that doesn't have primary 
tips that are the same - or nearly the same - color as the gray upperparts (an 
approach I once held but have since given up on). 


It will be interesting to see what becomes of this record.


Best wishes,
Amar Ayyash
Frankfort IL, USA

www.anythinglarus.com


On Wed, Jan 6, 2016 at 1:31 PM, Mike O'Keeffe  wrote:

> Greetings all,
>
> Irish birders are currently enjoying views of what appears to be our 
> first ever Glaucous-winged Gull.  I have put up some images and 
> discussion on my blog (link below).
>
> Aside from the obvious question, what do birders in N. America think 
> of the Irish bird? I have another question for this esteemed forum.  
> Has the Kodak Grey Scale ever been applied to the primary pattern of 
> Glaucous-winged Gull and if so at what Kodak Grey Scale Level are we 
> entering the realm of probable 1st generation hybrid?  I am asking 
> this because I know the Irish bird is certainly approaching the dark 
> end of the scale for GWG.  But I'd like to think that a subjective 
> analysis of the wing tip tones could be replaced with something a bit 
> more objective.  I have seen birds as dark winged as the Irish bird in 
> Vancouver but I couldn't rule out the possibility that these were hybrids.
>
> I believe the Grey Scale method proposed in the blog could be of some 
> use here, though with certain caveats including lighting and contrast 
> conditions.
>
> Hoping to hear from the laridophiles.
>
>
> http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-sc
> ales-a
> nd-gulls.html
>
> Regards
>
> Mike O'Keeffe
> Ireland
>
>
> This email has been scanned by BullGuard antivirus protection.
> For more info visit www.bullguard.com
>
> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
>

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Subject: Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
From: Tony Leukering <greatgrayowl AT AOL.COM>
Date: Wed, 6 Jan 2016 17:02:41 -0500
 Mike, Amar, et al.:

I, too, have struggled with Glaucous-winged wingtip coloration for decades. 
Various observers/birding communities have quite differing opinions on where 
the line lies between "pure" Glaucous-winged Gull (GWGU) and GWGUs with an 
admixture of genes from black-wing-tipped species (Western Gull, Herring Gull, 
Slaty-backed Gull). My experience with the species is quite localized, but 
includes Kamchatka, western Alaska, the Puget Sound area, San Franciso and 
Monterey bays, Santa Barbara, San Diego, and northern Baja -- so, nearly the 
entire range of the species. As noted by Amar, some observers and communities 
think that any bird with wingtips more than marginally darker than the mantle 
coloration are the result of miscegenation, while many accept distinctly darker 
bits to primaries 7 or 8-10 as perfectly fine. Until someone or someones do an 
extensive analysis of the problem, I see no end to the problem. 


Tony

 


Tony Leukering
Largo, FL
http://cowyebird.blogspot.com/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/tony_leukering/

http://aba.org/photoquiz/

 

 

-----Original Message-----
From: Amar Ayyash 
To: BIRDWG01 
Sent: Wed, Jan 6, 2016 4:04 pm
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Irish Glaucous-winged Gull

Mike and all, I posed this question regarding "darkness of primaries" on
pure Glaucous-wingeds a few years ago, right here on this list. I received
several responses with mixed opinions. I can say with some confidence that
there is no peer-reviewed paper that has addressed this subject with any
seriousness. The level of gene flow associated with this species in the
North Pacific makes measuring this a monumental task. It appears, to my
knowledge, that this is another "gray area" with our large gulls.

Some will be okay with the apparent darkness in primary tips shown by the
Irish gull, so long as everything else matches (i.e., gray upperparts,
pattern of head streaking, orbital color, size/structure). On the other
hand, I know of birders that will suspect mixed genes in an adult that
doesn't have primary tips that are the same - or nearly the same - color as
the gray upperparts (an approach I once held but have since given up on).

It will be interesting to see what becomes of this record.


Best wishes,
Amar Ayyash
Frankfort IL, USA

www.anythinglarus.com


On Wed, Jan 6, 2016 at 1:31 PM, Mike O'Keeffe  wrote:

> Greetings all,
>
> Irish birders are currently enjoying views of what appears to be our first
> ever Glaucous-winged Gull.  I have put up some images and discussion on my
> blog (link below).
>
> Aside from the obvious question, what do birders in N. America think of the
> Irish bird? I have another question for this esteemed forum.  Has the Kodak
> Grey Scale ever been applied to the primary pattern of Glaucous-winged Gull
> and if so at what Kodak Grey Scale Level are we entering the realm of
> probable 1st generation hybrid?  I am asking this because I know the Irish
> bird is certainly approaching the dark end of the scale for GWG.  But I'd
> like to think that a subjective analysis of the wing tip tones could be
> replaced with something a bit more objective.  I have seen birds as dark
> winged as the Irish bird in Vancouver but I couldn't rule out the
> possibility that these were hybrids.
>
> I believe the Grey Scale method proposed in the blog could be of some use
> here, though with certain caveats including lighting and contrast
> conditions.
>
> Hoping to hear from the laridophiles.
>
>
> http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-scales-a
> nd-gulls.html
>
> Regards
>
> Mike O'Keeffe
> Ireland
>
>
> This email has been scanned by BullGuard antivirus protection.
> For more info visit www.bullguard.com
>
> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
>

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Subject: Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole
From: David Irons <llsdirons AT MSN.COM>
Date: Wed, 6 Jan 2016 13:17:36 -0800
I will download Wayne's images into my gallery when I get home later this 
evening, as I think they are quite informative. They help age the bird and 
better show the color that we saw in the field. 


I am comfortable abandoning any notion of this bird being an Orchard Oriole and 
accepting that Bullock's is at least part of the equation. The uniformity and 
intensity of the color below leave me with questions about it being a pure 
Bullock's. 


Dave Irons

Sent from my iPhone

> On Jan 6, 2016, at 11:33 AM, Peter Pyle  wrote:
> 
> Thanks to Wayne Hoffman's more indicative images I agree now with a 
first-winter bird that has replaced all of the wing coverts as well as the 
inner two tertials (s8-s9). However, all of what I stated earlier applies to 
formative birds as well as basic - both HOOR and BAOR undergo most/all of the 
preformative molt in the Mexican monsoon area and return as first-spring birds 
in more-worn plumage than we are used to. Formative males usually have black in 
the throat by now and, along with its perceived small size and thin bill, the 
Newport Oregon bird (a NEOR?) appears to be a first-winter female. This bird 
could be within range of a first-winter female BUOR with a later molt or some 
other plumage influence. 

> 
> I agree with Al Jaramillo and others that the bill shape and size does not 
represent OROR. I'm not as sure whether or not a bit of BAOR introgression can 
be excluded. 

> 
> Peter
> 
> At 09:53 AM 1/6/2016, David Irons wrote:
>> Greetings All,
>> 
>> I would like to address the specifics of some of the responses that have 
been offered about this oriole. 

>> 
>> First, it has been suggested that we can infer differences in "bulk" 
(translated in weight measurements) by comparing the apparent size of the 
oriole, with the apparent size of the House Sparrow. You can't. If you put a 
Great Gray Owl side-by-side with a Great Horned Owl you might infer that the 
Great Gray would outweigh the Great Horned on the basis of their sizes 
(length). Great Grays average about five inches longer than Great Horneds, but 
weigh about 3/4 of a pound less. When the photos of this oriole were taken, 
ambient air temps were hovering just under 40F with cold easterly winds blowing 
at 15-20mph. Both the House Sparrow and the oriole seem a bit fluffed up when 
sitting on the ground. 

>> 
>> Multiple respondents have indicated that their "gut reaction" or how the 
bird "strikes" them in appearance is Bullock's and not Orchard, but don't 
necessarily explain why. We went to Newport last weekend expecting to see a 
Bullock's Oriole. Our immediate reaction upon seeing this bird in life was that 
it struck us as an Orchard and not a Bullock's for reasons explained in my 
original post. It has been suggested that the bird lacks the "cute" appearance 
of an Orchard and looks "fierce" in some photos. These are highly subjective 
terms that are unlikely to be interpreted similarly by any two people looking 
at these images. I might argue that the bird looks cute in the initial four 
images when it is sitting in the myrtle tree, but looks a bit more fierce in 
the close-ups when it is on the feeder, which begs the question, which of these 
impressions is more meaningful? (probably neither). 

>> 
>> I assume that Tim Janzen took measurements from the photos in coming up with 
his 1.35:1 ratio of size difference between the oriole and the House Sparrow, 
which as he indicates would put the oriole more in the range of a Bullock's in 
size. That said, I am always a bit wary of trying to take comparative 
measurements from photos, as there are all sorts of variables that can't be 
accounted for. In terms of size comparisons. We saw both female and immature 
male Red-winged Blackbirds using this same feeder. Using average measurements 
taken from various sources, an Orchard Oriole should be about the same size or 
a bit smaller than a female Red-winged and clearly smaller than a male 
Red-winged. The size of this bird was consistent with this expected size 
difference. Most measurements for Bullock's Oriole put it close to if not equal 
to the size (length) of a male Red-winged Blackbird. As we looked at the oriole 
side-by-side with House Sparrows, House Finches, and fairly close to! 

 White-crowned Sparrows it seemed to be closer in size to those species than it 
did to the male Red-winged Blackbirds that occasionally visited the feeders. 

>> 
>> Terry Bronson's comments reference the variability of the yellow noted in 
Birds of North America Online species account for Bullock's Oriole. I think he 
is misinterpreting the statement in the account. Rising et al. point out that 
the yellow is variable, not the extent of the yellow. I think this statement 
refers to the yellow where it normally occurs on a immature or female Bullock's 
and is not meant to imply that the extent of the yellow on the underparts is 
highly variable in immature and female birds. In several places in this account 
the belly and flanks of female and immature Bullock's are described as being 
"grayish white and sometimes slightly yellow." Nowhere in this account does it 
indicate that the underparts of a immature or female Bullock's can be 
predominantly yellow, which is clearly the case with the Newport oriole. 

>> 
>> I am the first to admit that when looking at the photos of this bird there 
are some aspects of its appearance that do not readily fit Orchard Oriole. 
Oregon is within the primary breeding range of Bullock's Orioles, so this is a 
bird that I see many many times each year. Hooded Oriole is a near-annual 
vagrant to Oregon. I've seen this species in Oregon a number of times and I've 
also seen many Hoodeds in my travels to places where they occur regularly. I 
have seen one Orchard Oriole in Oregon, which ironically was Oregon's first, 
which I and some fellow birders found back in September 1980 about 200 meters 
from where this bird is being seen. I lived for a time in the Midwest, where 
Orchards are fairly common breeders, so I feel like I have a good basic feel 
for their relative size and structure. When I look at the photos of the bird in 
the wax myrtle (the first four images in the gallery), the bird strikes me as a 
pretty straightforward Orchard in terms of overall color, ! 

 size, head shape and bill length and shape. This view formed my earliest 
impression of the bird. When I look at the images of the bird on the feeder and 
back in the courtyard, its overall appearance seems more ambiguous. The most 
consistent and unambiguous thing about this bird is how extensively yellow or 
yellow-orange (if you trust the color accuracy of the images) the bird on its 
underparts. I have not found any reference or received any authoritative 
feedback suggesting that a female or immature Bullock's of either sex can show 
this much yellow below. In the absence of such evidence, I don't think that one 
can casually suggest that this is Bullock's Oriole without some explanation for 
why it is so yellow below 

>> 
>> Lastly, there have been some posts about this bird that mention "immature 
male" when discussing the possibility of Orchard. One post to the Oregon 
Birders Online listserv suggested that this bird was being called a young male 
Orchard. This isn't the case. At no point in my discussions of this bird with 
other birders present did any of us presume it to be a young male. 

>> 
>> I value the responses that I've received so far and the fact that a number 
of folks are looking at this bird and seeing a Bullock's. As I've been writing 
this, some other commentary has come in and Wayne Hoffman, who has also seen 
this bird repeatedly, privately sent me some photos that I think better capture 
the color of the bird as I recall it from seeing it in the field. He has a rump 
angle shot that shows the tail feathers pretty well and a rump pattern that I 
think best fits Bullock's. The tail feathers are worn, brown-looking and at 
least some are quite pointed at the tip, which would seem to indicate that they 
are retained juvenile rectrices, which does not mesh with Peter Pyle's thinking 
that this is an adult female. Even if it were, the almost entirely yellow 
underparts are problematic. 

>> 
>> Dave Irons
>> 
>> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
> 
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Subject: Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole
From: Alvaro Jaramillo <chucao AT COASTSIDE.NET>
Date: Wed, 6 Jan 2016 12:49:55 -0800
David, 
   Having studied the hybrid situation in W Kansas, as an assistant to Jim
Rising some moons ago, it is pertinent to note that the hybrid zone between
Bullock's and Baltimore is narrow but significant. In the hybrid zone, no
bird we saw was pure. Birds across the hybrid zone are clinal on average,
more Bullock's like in the west part of the zone, Baltimore like in the
east. However, all sorts of variations occur. What these birds look like as
first year, or winter females is really unknown at this point. Molt of the
hybrids is even wonky, with the suggestion that some hybrids may have a
mixed molt between the differing strategies used by Bullock's and Baltimore.
The features that are not Bullock's like in this bird, can be accounted for
by suggesting it may have mixed genes. Again, remember we are not talking
about intermediate, F1 type hybrids, but a gene soup...sort of like Puget
Sound Gull. 
Regards
Alvaro 

Alvaro Jaramillo
alvaro AT alvarosadventures.com
www.alvarosadventures.com


-----Original Message-----
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification
[mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of David Irons
Sent: Wednesday, January 6, 2016 9:53 AM
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Newport, Oregon Oriole

Greetings All,

I would like to address the specifics of some of the responses that have
been offered about this oriole. 

First, it has been suggested that we can infer differences in "bulk"
(translated in weight measurements) by comparing the apparent size of the
oriole, with the apparent size of the House Sparrow. You can't. If you put a
Great Gray Owl side-by-side with a Great Horned Owl you might infer that the
Great Gray would outweigh the Great Horned on the basis of their sizes
(length). Great Grays average about five inches longer than Great Horneds,
but weigh about 3/4 of a pound less. When the photos of this oriole were
taken, ambient air temps were hovering just under 40F with cold easterly
winds blowing at 15-20mph. Both the House Sparrow and the oriole seem a bit
fluffed up when sitting on the ground.  

Multiple respondents have indicated that their "gut reaction" or how the
bird "strikes" them in appearance is Bullock's and not Orchard, but don't
necessarily explain why. We went to Newport last weekend expecting to see a
Bullock's Oriole. Our immediate reaction upon seeing this bird in life was
that it struck us as an Orchard and not a Bullock's for reasons explained in
my original post. It has been suggested that the bird lacks the "cute"
appearance of an Orchard and looks "fierce" in some photos. These are highly
subjective terms that are unlikely to be interpreted similarly by any two
people looking at these images. I might argue that the bird looks cute in
the initial four images when it is sitting in the myrtle tree, but looks a
bit more fierce in the close-ups when it is on the feeder, which begs the
question, which of these impressions is more meaningful? (probably neither).


I assume that Tim Janzen took measurements from the photos in coming up with
his 1.35:1 ratio of size difference between the oriole and the House
Sparrow, which as he indicates would put the oriole more in the range of a
Bullock's in size. That said, I am always a bit wary of trying to take
comparative measurements from photos, as there are all sorts of variables
that can't be accounted for. In terms of size comparisons. We saw both
female and immature male Red-winged Blackbirds using this same feeder. Using
average measurements taken from various sources, an Orchard Oriole should be
about the same size or a bit smaller than a female Red-winged and clearly
smaller than a male Red-winged. The size of this bird was consistent with
this expected size difference. Most measurements for Bullock's Oriole put it
close to if not equal to the size (length) of a male Red-winged Blackbird.
As we looked at the oriole side-by-side with House Sparrows, House Finches,
and fairly close to White-crowned Sparrows it seemed to be closer in size to
those species than it did to the male Red-winged Blackbirds that
occasionally visited the feeders. 

Terry Bronson's comments reference the variability of the yellow noted in
Birds of North America Online species account for Bullock's Oriole. I think
he is misinterpreting the statement in the account. Rising et al. point out
that the yellow is variable, not the extent of the yellow. I think this
statement refers to the yellow where it normally occurs on a immature or
female Bullock's and is not meant to imply that the extent of the yellow on
the underparts is highly variable in immature and female birds. In several
places in this account the belly and flanks of female and immature Bullock's
are described as being "grayish white and sometimes slightly yellow."
Nowhere in this account does it indicate that the underparts of a immature
or female Bullock's can be predominantly yellow, which is clearly the case
with the Newport oriole. 

I am the first to admit that when looking at the photos of this bird there
are some aspects of its appearance that do not readily fit Orchard Oriole.
Oregon is within the primary breeding range of Bullock's Orioles, so this is
a bird that I see many many times each year. Hooded Oriole is a near-annual
vagrant to Oregon. I've seen this species in Oregon a number of times and
I've also seen many Hoodeds in my travels to places where they occur
regularly. I have seen one Orchard Oriole in Oregon, which ironically was
Oregon's first, which I and some fellow birders found back in September 1980
about 200 meters from where this bird is being seen. I lived for a time in
the Midwest, where Orchards are fairly common breeders, so I feel like I
have a good basic feel for their relative size and structure. When I look at
the photos of the bird in the wax myrtle (the first four images in the
gallery), the bird strikes me as a pretty straightforward Orchard in terms
of overall color, size, head shape and bill length and shape. This view
formed my earliest impression of the bird. When I look at the images of the
bird on the feeder and back in the courtyard, its overall appearance seems
more ambiguous. The most consistent and unambiguous thing about this bird is
how extensively yellow or yellow-orange (if you trust the color accuracy of
the images) the bird on its underparts. I have not found any reference or
received any authoritative feedback suggesting that a female or immature
Bullock's of either sex can show this much yellow below. In the absence of
such evidence, I don't think that one can casually suggest that this is
Bullock's Oriole without some explanation for why it is so yellow below

Lastly, there have been some posts about this bird that mention "immature
male" when discussing the possibility of Orchard. One post to the Oregon
Birders Online listserv suggested that this bird was being called a young
male Orchard. This isn't the case. At no point in my discussions of this
bird with other birders present did any of us presume it to be a young male.


I value the responses that I've received so far and the fact that a number
of folks are looking at this bird and seeing a Bullock's. As I've been
writing this, some other commentary has come in and Wayne Hoffman, who has
also seen this bird repeatedly, privately sent me some photos that I think
better capture the color of the bird as I recall it from seeing it in the
field. He has a rump angle shot that shows the tail feathers pretty well and
a rump pattern that I think best fits Bullock's. The tail feathers are worn,
brown-looking and at least some are quite pointed at the tip, which would
seem to indicate that they are retained juvenile rectrices, which does not
mesh with Peter Pyle's thinking that this is an adult female. Even if it
were, the almost entirely yellow underparts are problematic. 

Dave Irons
 		 	   		  
Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
From: Amar Ayyash <amarayyash AT GMAIL.COM>
Date: Wed, 6 Jan 2016 15:03:13 -0600
Mike and all, I posed this question regarding "darkness of primaries" on
pure Glaucous-wingeds a few years ago, right here on this list. I received
several responses with mixed opinions. I can say with some confidence that
there is no peer-reviewed paper that has addressed this subject with any
seriousness. The level of gene flow associated with this species in the
North Pacific makes measuring this a monumental task. It appears, to my
knowledge, that this is another "gray area" with our large gulls.

Some will be okay with the apparent darkness in primary tips shown by the
Irish gull, so long as everything else matches (i.e., gray upperparts,
pattern of head streaking, orbital color, size/structure). On the other
hand, I know of birders that will suspect mixed genes in an adult that
doesn't have primary tips that are the same - or nearly the same - color as
the gray upperparts (an approach I once held but have since given up on).

It will be interesting to see what becomes of this record.


Best wishes,
Amar Ayyash
Frankfort IL, USA

www.anythinglarus.com


On Wed, Jan 6, 2016 at 1:31 PM, Mike O'Keeffe  wrote:

> Greetings all,
>
> Irish birders are currently enjoying views of what appears to be our first
> ever Glaucous-winged Gull.  I have put up some images and discussion on my
> blog (link below).
>
> Aside from the obvious question, what do birders in N. America think of the
> Irish bird? I have another question for this esteemed forum.  Has the Kodak
> Grey Scale ever been applied to the primary pattern of Glaucous-winged Gull
> and if so at what Kodak Grey Scale Level are we entering the realm of
> probable 1st generation hybrid?  I am asking this because I know the Irish
> bird is certainly approaching the dark end of the scale for GWG.  But I'd
> like to think that a subjective analysis of the wing tip tones could be
> replaced with something a bit more objective.  I have seen birds as dark
> winged as the Irish bird in Vancouver but I couldn't rule out the
> possibility that these were hybrids.
>
> I believe the Grey Scale method proposed in the blog could be of some use
> here, though with certain caveats including lighting and contrast
> conditions.
>
> Hoping to hear from the laridophiles.
>
>
> http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-scales-a
> nd-gulls.html
>
> Regards
>
> Mike O'Keeffe
> Ireland
>
>
> This email has been scanned by BullGuard antivirus protection.
> For more info visit www.bullguard.com
>
> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
>

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Irish Glaucous-winged Gull
From: "Mike O'Keeffe" <okeeffeml AT EIRCOM.NET>
Date: Wed, 6 Jan 2016 19:31:55 +0000
Greetings all,

Irish birders are currently enjoying views of what appears to be our first
ever Glaucous-winged Gull.  I have put up some images and discussion on my
blog (link below).  

Aside from the obvious question, what do birders in N. America think of the
Irish bird? I have another question for this esteemed forum.  Has the Kodak
Grey Scale ever been applied to the primary pattern of Glaucous-winged Gull
and if so at what Kodak Grey Scale Level are we entering the realm of
probable 1st generation hybrid?  I am asking this because I know the Irish
bird is certainly approaching the dark end of the scale for GWG.  But I'd
like to think that a subjective analysis of the wing tip tones could be
replaced with something a bit more objective.  I have seen birds as dark
winged as the Irish bird in Vancouver but I couldn't rule out the
possibility that these were hybrids.  

I believe the Grey Scale method proposed in the blog could be of some use
here, though with certain caveats including lighting and contrast
conditions.  

Hoping to hear from the laridophiles.

http://birdingimagequalitytool.blogspot.ie/2016/01/field-marks-grey-scales-a
nd-gulls.html

Regards

Mike O'Keeffe
Ireland


This email has been scanned by BullGuard antivirus protection.
For more info visit www.bullguard.com

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Subject: Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole
From: Peter Pyle <ppyle AT BIRDPOP.ORG>
Date: Wed, 6 Jan 2016 11:02:09 -0800
Thanks to Wayne Hoffman's more indicative images I agree now with a 
first-winter bird that has replaced all of the wing coverts as well 
as the inner two tertials (s8-s9). However, all of what I stated 
earlier applies to formative birds as well as basic - both HOOR and 
BAOR undergo most/all of the preformative molt in the Mexican monsoon 
area and return as first-spring birds in more-worn plumage than we 
are used to. Formative males usually have black in the throat by now 
and, along with its perceived small size and thin bill, the Newport 
Oregon bird (a NEOR?) appears to be a first-winter female. This bird 
could be within range of a first-winter female BUOR with a later molt 
or some other plumage influence.

I agree with Al Jaramillo and others that the bill shape and size 
does not represent OROR. I'm not as sure whether or not a bit of BAOR 
introgression can be excluded.

Peter

At 09:53 AM 1/6/2016, David Irons wrote:
>Greetings All,
>
>I would like to address the specifics of some of the responses that 
>have been offered about this oriole.
>
>First, it has been suggested that we can infer differences in "bulk" 
>(translated in weight measurements) by comparing the apparent size 
>of the oriole, with the apparent size of the House Sparrow. You 
>can't. If you put a Great Gray Owl side-by-side with a Great Horned 
>Owl you might infer that the Great Gray would outweigh the Great 
>Horned on the basis of their sizes (length). Great Grays average 
>about five inches longer than Great Horneds, but weigh about 3/4 of 
>a pound less. When the photos of this oriole were taken, ambient air 
>temps were hovering just under 40F with cold easterly winds blowing 
>at 15-20mph. Both the House Sparrow and the oriole seem a bit 
>fluffed up when sitting on the ground.
>
>Multiple respondents have indicated that their "gut reaction" or how 
>the bird "strikes" them in appearance is Bullock's and not Orchard, 
>but don't necessarily explain why. We went to Newport last weekend 
>expecting to see a Bullock's Oriole. Our immediate reaction upon 
>seeing this bird in life was that it struck us as an Orchard and not 
>a Bullock's for reasons explained in my original post. It has been 
>suggested that the bird lacks the "cute" appearance of an Orchard 
>and looks "fierce" in some photos. These are highly subjective terms 
>that are unlikely to be interpreted similarly by any two people 
>looking at these images. I might argue that the bird looks cute in 
>the initial four images when it is sitting in the myrtle tree, but 
>looks a bit more fierce in the close-ups when it is on the feeder, 
>which begs the question, which of these impressions is more 
>meaningful? (probably neither).
>
>I assume that Tim Janzen took measurements from the photos in coming 
>up with his 1.35:1 ratio of size difference between the oriole and 
>the House Sparrow, which as he indicates would put the oriole more 
>in the range of a Bullock's in size. That said, I am always a bit 
>wary of trying to take comparative measurements from photos, as 
>there are all sorts of variables that can't be accounted for. In 
>terms of size comparisons. We saw both female and immature male 
>Red-winged Blackbirds using this same feeder. Using average 
>measurements taken from various sources, an Orchard Oriole should be 
>about the same size or a bit smaller than a female Red-winged and 
>clearly smaller than a male Red-winged. The size of this bird was 
>consistent with this expected size difference. Most measurements for 
>Bullock's Oriole put it close to if not equal to the size (length) 
>of a male Red-winged Blackbird. As we looked at the oriole 
>side-by-side with House Sparrows, House Finches, and fairly close to 
>White-crowned Sparrows it seemed to be closer in size to those 
>species than it did to the male Red-winged Blackbirds that 
>occasionally visited the feeders.
>
>Terry Bronson's comments reference the variability of the yellow 
>noted in Birds of North America Online species account for Bullock's 
>Oriole. I think he is misinterpreting the statement in the account. 
>Rising et al. point out that the yellow is variable, not the extent 
>of the yellow. I think this statement refers to the yellow where it 
>normally occurs on a immature or female Bullock's and is not meant 
>to imply that the extent of the yellow on the underparts is highly 
>variable in immature and female birds. In several places in this 
>account the belly and flanks of female and immature Bullock's are 
>described as being "grayish white and sometimes slightly yellow." 
>Nowhere in this account does it indicate that the underparts of a 
>immature or female Bullock's can be predominantly yellow, which is 
>clearly the case with the Newport oriole.
>
>I am the first to admit that when looking at the photos of this bird 
>there are some aspects of its appearance that do not readily fit 
>Orchard Oriole. Oregon is within the primary breeding range of 
>Bullock's Orioles, so this is a bird that I see many many times each 
>year. Hooded Oriole is a near-annual vagrant to Oregon. I've seen 
>this species in Oregon a number of times and I've also seen many 
>Hoodeds in my travels to places where they occur regularly. I have 
>seen one Orchard Oriole in Oregon, which ironically was Oregon's 
>first, which I and some fellow birders found back in September 1980 
>about 200 meters from where this bird is being seen. I lived for a 
>time in the Midwest, where Orchards are fairly common breeders, so I 
>feel like I have a good basic feel for their relative size and 
>structure. When I look at the photos of the bird in the wax myrtle 
>(the first four images in the gallery), the bird strikes me as a 
>pretty straightforward Orchard in terms of overall color, size, head 
>shape and bill length and shape. This view formed my earliest 
>impression of the bird. When I look at the images of the bird on the 
>feeder and back in the courtyard, its overall appearance seems more 
>ambiguous. The most consistent and unambiguous thing about this bird 
>is how extensively yellow or yellow-orange (if you trust the color 
>accuracy of the images) the bird on its underparts. I have not found 
>any reference or received any authoritative feedback suggesting that 
>a female or immature Bullock's of either sex can show this much 
>yellow below. In the absence of such evidence, I don't think that 
>one can casually suggest that this is Bullock's Oriole without some 
>explanation for why it is so yellow below
>
>Lastly, there have been some posts about this bird that mention 
>"immature male" when discussing the possibility of Orchard. One post 
>to the Oregon Birders Online listserv suggested that this bird was 
>being called a young male Orchard. This isn't the case. At no point 
>in my discussions of this bird with other birders present did any of 
>us presume it to be a young male.
>
>I value the responses that I've received so far and the fact that a 
>number of folks are looking at this bird and seeing a Bullock's. As 
>I've been writing this, some other commentary has come in and Wayne 
>Hoffman, who has also seen this bird repeatedly, privately sent me 
>some photos that I think better capture the color of the bird as I 
>recall it from seeing it in the field. He has a rump angle shot that 
>shows the tail feathers pretty well and a rump pattern that I think 
>best fits Bullock's. The tail feathers are worn, brown-looking and 
>at least some are quite pointed at the tip, which would seem to 
>indicate that they are retained juvenile rectrices, which does not 
>mesh with Peter Pyle's thinking that this is an adult female. Even 
>if it were, the almost entirely yellow underparts are problematic.
>
>Dave Irons
>
>Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole
From: Alvaro Jaramillo <chucao AT COASTSIDE.NET>
Date: Wed, 6 Jan 2016 09:48:24 -0800
Hi there, 
 One thing that has not been talked about is the bill pattern. Oriole species 
differ in their bill pattern, sometimes this is a really good identification 
clue. However, bill patterns can be hard to assess in photos where there is 
strong light that may cause reflection or "shine" on the bill. 

 "Northern" orioles have a pretty unique bill pattern where the mandible is 
essentially all gray, with a small amount of dark on the gonys. The gray of the 
bill INVADES the maxilla. In other orioles the maxilla is all dark. The 
invasion of the gray to the maxilla creates a bill pattern in 
Bullock's-Baltimore that looks like a largely gray bill with a dark triangle 
shaped area on the base of the mandible, and sometimes a bit of dark on the 
gonys; such that with an eye squint it looks like a bill where there is a 
diagonal gray stripe from mandible base to outer half of maxilla. On Orchard 
the bill is dark on maxilla, and usually substantially dark on tip of mandible, 
so it looks like a dark bill with a gray wedge at the base of mandible. Some 
have a bit of gray around the nostrils. 

 These differences are hard to describe in words, but they are quite 
consistent. Check out photos of other orioles, like Altamira vs Streak-backed 
vs Spot-breasted vs Hooded and you can see how bill pattern, as well as shape 
varies such that many of these birds you could separate on bill alone! On the 
whole what I see on the bill of this bird in Oregon is of a "Northern" Oriole, 
not an Orchard. 

Alvaro

Alvaro Jaramillo
alvaro AT alvarosadventures.com
www.alvarosadventures.com

-----Original Message-----
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification 
[mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of julian hough 

Sent: Wednesday, January 6, 2016 9:22 AM
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Newport, Oregon Oriole

Hi Dave (et al),

The vagaries of color and light withstanding, and a lack of recent experience 
with Bullock's, my feeling is the bird is a Bullock's because: 


   
 - the bird seems to have a more contrasting head pattern with a diffuse paler 
super and darker crown 

 - to me, the wing bars of Orchard oriole almost look like two parallel lines, 
vaguely recalling those of Bay-breasted Warbler. The Newport bird has the outer 
webs of the greater coverts broadly edged white which doesn't create the same 
impression to my eyes and better fits with Bullock's. 

 - the broad white edgings to the primaries seem obvious and a better fit with 
Bullock's (not sure this is a feature, but Orchard's seem to be less marked 
here?) 

 - the dark centers to the median coverts are saw-toothed - diagnostic (?) of 
Bullock's 


Hard to judge the size and the subtle plumage colors (yellow and green in 
Orchard versus yellow and grey in Bullock's) and light in photos, but for me, 
the plumage marks seem to add up to be more indicative of Bullock's rather than 
Orchard. 


Hope this is of some use.
Regards,
Julian Julian Hough New Haven, CT 06519 www.naturescapeimages.wordpress.com 

 On Wednesday, January 6, 2016 1:15 AM, David Irons  wrote: 

 

 Greetings All,

The gallery of images at the link below show an immature oriole that is 
wintering at the Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport, Oregon. This bird 
has now been present for a few weeks. It had been cautiously identified as a 
young Bullock's by those who live locally and had seen the bird in life and 
several of us who had seen earlier photos of the bird, which seemed to show 
black on the throat (doesn't really have that) and what appeared to be a dark 
stripe behind the eye. At least one photo, taken this past weekend by Craig 
Tumer, has been circulated on the Facebook Advanced ID page, where additional 
folks including Joe Morlan have opined that it is a Bullock's. 


http://www.birdfellow.com/photos/gallery/954-newport-oregon-oriole-jan-1-2-2016

This past weekend Shawneen Finnegan and I were over in Newport to do the local 
CBC. We spent the day on Friday scouting our area and then did the count on 
Saturday. We saw the bird on both days and found it to look quite different to 
the naked eye than it has typically appeared in photos. I took all of the 
photos in the gallery above over those two days. I have shots of the bird in 
multiple light conditions and at different locations. There are some pitfalls 
and misleading photo effects that seem to be steering most of the 
identifications towards Bullock's, even though the bird shows far more 
extensive color below than any immature/female Bullock's that I've seen. In the 
field, we felt reasonably confident that this bird was an Orchard Oriole, 
albeit one that had some features that made us scratch our heads a bit. Here 
are the aspects of the bird that we found to be either convincing in favor of 
Orchard, or problematic. Clearly,the apparent orangish tones in the plumage 
(mos! 

 t apparent in photos and not necessarily so in life) are creating the most 
questions. 


1. Coloration -- The bird consistently appears more orangish-yellow in photos 
than it seems to the naked eye. Upon finally getting home and off-loading my 
photos, I was staggered to see how orangish the bird looks in most photos when 
looking at these images on my computer screen. 


2. Dark on the throat -- The bird has an injury that appears as an unfeathered 
pit part way down the throat and it seems to have a few small flecks of dark 
feathering on the chin (not noticeable in most photos). In the earlier photos 
that I saw, shadow from the bill, combined with the dark pitted spot created 
the illusion of a dark chin/throat patch, which this bird clearly does not have 
if seen well. Photo #8 is an example of the throat appearing to have a dark 
patch. 


3. Dark post-ocular stripe -- Where the feather tracts along the supercilium 
area and auriculars meet behind the eye, there is a trough-like indentation 
that from most viewing angles is in shadow, thus creating the apparent eyeline. 
At best this trough is slightly darker, but the rather dark conspicuous eyeline 
that appears in some photos is generally very weak to virtually absent in most 
images. If you look at photo #6 in this gallery, you can see the trough-like 
indentation behind the eye. 


4. Head shape -- Is very plastic from photo to photo. My first good looks at 
this bird are represented by the first four images in this gallery. After 
getting this view, I immediately said to Shawneen, "This looks like an Orchard 
Oriole." Then the bird flew and we both noted the rather small size, 
short-tailed look, very squared-off tail, and the fairly uniform lemon yellow 
underparts of the bird. At this point, she agreed that it seemed like an 
Orchard Oriole. In these first four images, the head shape (steep forehead and 
domed crown) struck me as Orchard-like, as did the bill, which seems fairly 
short, thin and straight. In many of the photos of the bird at the feeder, the 
crown profile seems much flatter with very little slope to the forehead. 


5. Extent of yellow below -- Aside from a bit of washed-out gray on the lower 
flanks, this bird is almost entirely yellow below, with the yellow on the 
throat and breast being most intense and the yellow on the vent and undertail 
coverts also being quite intense. 


6. Size -- The bird was seen on the seed feeder and on the ground in close 
proximity to both House Finches and House Sparrows and it landed on a fence 
where White-crowned Sparrows were often landing. It seemed to be much closer in 
size to those species than say a Red-winged Blackbird, which was also visiting 
the feeder on occasion. It seemed too small for a Bullock's Oriole. Photos 
9,10, and 11 show it on the ground next to House Sparrows. 


7. Potential for misleading photo effects -- Most of the best photos of this 
bird have been taken while it feeds on a seed feeder in a small courtyard in 
the complex of buildings at the Hatfield Marine Science Center. As you can see 
in image #5, there is a large hummingbird feeder filled with red-colored nectar 
hanging about two feet from the seed feeder, with both feeders hanging from an 
overhang of the building probably less than three feet out from a bank of 
windows that runs all along the side of the building. These photos were mostly 
taken during the afternoon hours, when the sun angle is from the west–to the 
left in this image. Note how the entire right side of the seed feeder is 
reflecting red from light refracting off of the hummer feeder and to a lesser 
extent off the windows. While some have suggested that this should not have had 
much impact on the colors of the bird shown in these images, I think it is a 
factor in how orangish the bird looks in many photos. At ! 

 this time of year, the sun angle is from the south and then southwest later in 
the day, which tends to make birds look more reddish/orangish in color, 
particularly during the afternoon hours. 


When we left the coast on Saturday night, we were convinced that the bird was 
an Orchard Oriole. Upon reviewing our photos last night and some email 
exchanges with others since then, our certainty about the ID of this bird has 
withered. I can't recall seeing an oriole that was so confusing, so I await 
enlightenment. 


Dave Irons
Portland, OR  
                         
Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html


Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
  

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole
From: David Irons <llsdirons AT MSN.COM>
Date: Wed, 6 Jan 2016 17:53:22 +0000
Greetings All,

I would like to address the specifics of some of the responses that have been 
offered about this oriole. 


First, it has been suggested that we can infer differences in "bulk" 
(translated in weight measurements) by comparing the apparent size of the 
oriole, with the apparent size of the House Sparrow. You can't. If you put a 
Great Gray Owl side-by-side with a Great Horned Owl you might infer that the 
Great Gray would outweigh the Great Horned on the basis of their sizes 
(length). Great Grays average about five inches longer than Great Horneds, but 
weigh about 3/4 of a pound less. When the photos of this oriole were taken, 
ambient air temps were hovering just under 40F with cold easterly winds blowing 
at 15-20mph. Both the House Sparrow and the oriole seem a bit fluffed up when 
sitting on the ground. 


Multiple respondents have indicated that their "gut reaction" or how the bird 
"strikes" them in appearance is Bullock's and not Orchard, but don't 
necessarily explain why. We went to Newport last weekend expecting to see a 
Bullock's Oriole. Our immediate reaction upon seeing this bird in life was that 
it struck us as an Orchard and not a Bullock's for reasons explained in my 
original post. It has been suggested that the bird lacks the "cute" appearance 
of an Orchard and looks "fierce" in some photos. These are highly subjective 
terms that are unlikely to be interpreted similarly by any two people looking 
at these images. I might argue that the bird looks cute in the initial four 
images when it is sitting in the myrtle tree, but looks a bit more fierce in 
the close-ups when it is on the feeder, which begs the question, which of these 
impressions is more meaningful? (probably neither). 


I assume that Tim Janzen took measurements from the photos in coming up with 
his 1.35:1 ratio of size difference between the oriole and the House Sparrow, 
which as he indicates would put the oriole more in the range of a Bullock's in 
size. That said, I am always a bit wary of trying to take comparative 
measurements from photos, as there are all sorts of variables that can't be 
accounted for. In terms of size comparisons. We saw both female and immature 
male Red-winged Blackbirds using this same feeder. Using average measurements 
taken from various sources, an Orchard Oriole should be about the same size or 
a bit smaller than a female Red-winged and clearly smaller than a male 
Red-winged. The size of this bird was consistent with this expected size 
difference. Most measurements for Bullock's Oriole put it close to if not equal 
to the size (length) of a male Red-winged Blackbird. As we looked at the oriole 
side-by-side with House Sparrows, House Finches, and fairly close to 
White-crowned Sparrows it seemed to be closer in size to those species than it 
did to the male Red-winged Blackbirds that occasionally visited the feeders. 


Terry Bronson's comments reference the variability of the yellow noted in Birds 
of North America Online species account for Bullock's Oriole. I think he is 
misinterpreting the statement in the account. Rising et al. point out that the 
yellow is variable, not the extent of the yellow. I think this statement refers 
to the yellow where it normally occurs on a immature or female Bullock's and is 
not meant to imply that the extent of the yellow on the underparts is highly 
variable in immature and female birds. In several places in this account the 
belly and flanks of female and immature Bullock's are described as being 
"grayish white and sometimes slightly yellow." Nowhere in this account does it 
indicate that the underparts of a immature or female Bullock's can be 
predominantly yellow, which is clearly the case with the Newport oriole. 


I am the first to admit that when looking at the photos of this bird there are 
some aspects of its appearance that do not readily fit Orchard Oriole. Oregon 
is within the primary breeding range of Bullock's Orioles, so this is a bird 
that I see many many times each year. Hooded Oriole is a near-annual vagrant to 
Oregon. I've seen this species in Oregon a number of times and I've also seen 
many Hoodeds in my travels to places where they occur regularly. I have seen 
one Orchard Oriole in Oregon, which ironically was Oregon's first, which I and 
some fellow birders found back in September 1980 about 200 meters from where 
this bird is being seen. I lived for a time in the Midwest, where Orchards are 
fairly common breeders, so I feel like I have a good basic feel for their 
relative size and structure. When I look at the photos of the bird in the wax 
myrtle (the first four images in the gallery), the bird strikes me as a pretty 
straightforward Orchard in terms of overall color, size, head shape and bill 
length and shape. This view formed my earliest impression of the bird. When I 
look at the images of the bird on the feeder and back in the courtyard, its 
overall appearance seems more ambiguous. The most consistent and unambiguous 
thing about this bird is how extensively yellow or yellow-orange (if you trust 
the color accuracy of the images) the bird on its underparts. I have not found 
any reference or received any authoritative feedback suggesting that a female 
or immature Bullock's of either sex can show this much yellow below. In the 
absence of such evidence, I don't think that one can casually suggest that this 
is Bullock's Oriole without some explanation for why it is so yellow below 


Lastly, there have been some posts about this bird that mention "immature male" 
when discussing the possibility of Orchard. One post to the Oregon Birders 
Online listserv suggested that this bird was being called a young male Orchard. 
This isn't the case. At no point in my discussions of this bird with other 
birders present did any of us presume it to be a young male. 


I value the responses that I've received so far and the fact that a number of 
folks are looking at this bird and seeing a Bullock's. As I've been writing 
this, some other commentary has come in and Wayne Hoffman, who has also seen 
this bird repeatedly, privately sent me some photos that I think better capture 
the color of the bird as I recall it from seeing it in the field. He has a rump 
angle shot that shows the tail feathers pretty well and a rump pattern that I 
think best fits Bullock's. The tail feathers are worn, brown-looking and at 
least some are quite pointed at the tip, which would seem to indicate that they 
are retained juvenile rectrices, which does not mesh with Peter Pyle's thinking 
that this is an adult female. Even if it were, the almost entirely yellow 
underparts are problematic. 


Dave Irons
 		 	   		  
Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole
From: Chris Hill <chill AT COASTAL.EDU>
Date: Wed, 6 Jan 2016 12:43:26 -0500
Maybe this has been said before and I missed it, but even granted vagaries of 
light and photo processing 


Its orange.

Even given David Irons comments about how it looked much less orange in life, 
this southeastern birder cannot turn those images into a Orchard Oriole in my 
mind. Just does not compute. 


I guess Im in the BUOR with some BAOR admixture camp.

Chris

************************************************************************
Christopher E. Hill
Biology Department
Coastal Carolina University
Conway, SC 29528-1954
843-349-2567
chill AT coastal.edu
http://ww2.coastal.edu/chill/chill.htm

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole
From: julian hough <jrhough1 AT SNET.NET>
Date: Wed, 6 Jan 2016 17:22:29 +0000
Hi Dave (et al),

The vagaries of color and light withstanding, and a lack of recent experience 
with Bullock's, my feeling is the bird is a Bullock's because: 


   
 - the bird seems to have a more contrasting head pattern  with a diffuse 
paler super and darker crown 

 - to me, the wing bars of Orchard oriole almost look like two parallel lines, 
vaguely recalling those of Bay-breasted Warbler. The Newport bird has the outer 
webs of the greater coverts broadly edged white which doesn't create the same 
impression to my eyes and better fits with Bullock's. 

 - the broad white edgings to the primaries seem obvious and a better fit with 
Bullock's (not sure this is a feature, but Orchard's seem to be less marked 
here?) 

 - the dark centers to the median coverts are saw-toothed - diagnostic (?) of 
Bullock's 


Hard to judge the size and the subtle plumage colors (yellow and green in 
Orchard versus yellow and grey in Bullock's) and light in photos, but for me, 
the plumage marks seem to add up to be more indicative of Bullock's rather than 
Orchard. 


Hope this is of some use.
Regards,
Julian Julian Hough New Haven, CT 06519 
www.naturescapeimages.wordpress.com 

 On Wednesday, January 6, 2016 1:15 AM, David Irons  wrote: 

 

 Greetings All,

The gallery of images at the link below show an immature oriole that is 
wintering at the Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport, Oregon. This bird 
has now been present for a few weeks. It had been cautiously identified as a 
young Bullock's by those who live locally and had seen the bird in life and 
several of us who had seen earlier photos of the bird, which seemed to show 
black on the throat (doesn't really have that) and what appeared to be a dark 
stripe behind the eye. At least one photo, taken this past weekend by Craig 
Tumer, has been circulated on the Facebook Advanced ID page, where additional 
folks including Joe Morlan have opined that it is a Bullock's. 


http://www.birdfellow.com/photos/gallery/954-newport-oregon-oriole-jan-1-2-2016

This past weekend Shawneen Finnegan and I were over in Newport to do the local 
CBC. We spent the day on Friday scouting our area and then did the count on 
Saturday. We saw the bird on both days and found it to look quite different to 
the naked eye than it has typically appeared in photos. I took all of the 
photos in the gallery above over those two days. I have shots of the bird in 
multiple light conditions and at different locations. There are some pitfalls 
and misleading photo effects that seem to be steering most of the 
identifications towards Bullock's, even though the bird shows far more 
extensive color below than any immature/female Bullock's that I've seen. In the 
field, we felt reasonably confident that this bird was an Orchard Oriole, 
albeit one that had some features that made us scratch our heads a bit. Here 
are the aspects of the bird that we found to be either convincing in favor of 
Orchard, or problematic. Clearly,the apparent orangish tones in the plumage 
(most apparent in photos and not necessarily so in life) are creating the most 
questions. 


1. Coloration -- The bird consistently appears more orangish-yellow in photos 
than it seems to the naked eye. Upon finally getting home and off-loading my 
photos, I was staggered to see how orangish the bird looks in most photos when 
looking at these images on my computer screen. 


2. Dark on the throat -- The bird has an injury that appears as an unfeathered 
pit part way down the throat and it seems to have a few small flecks of dark 
feathering on the chin (not noticeable in most photos). In the earlier photos 
that I saw, shadow from the bill, combined with the dark pitted spot created 
the illusion of a dark chin/throat patch, which this bird clearly does not have 
if seen well. Photo #8 is an example of the throat appearing to have a dark 
patch. 


3. Dark post-ocular stripe -- Where the feather tracts along the supercilium 
area and auriculars meet behind the eye, there is a trough-like indentation 
that from most viewing angles is in shadow, thus creating the apparent eyeline. 
At best this trough is slightly darker, but the rather dark conspicuous eyeline 
that appears in some photos is generally very weak to virtually absent in most 
images. If you look at photo #6 in this gallery, you can see the trough-like 
indentation behind the eye. 


4. Head shape -- Is very plastic from photo to photo. My first good looks at 
this bird are represented by the first four images in this gallery. After 
getting this view, I immediately said to Shawneen, "This looks like an Orchard 
Oriole." Then the bird flew and we both noted the rather small size, 
short-tailed look, very squared-off tail, and the fairly uniform lemon yellow 
underparts of the bird. At this point, she agreed that it seemed like an 
Orchard Oriole. In these first four images, the head shape (steep forehead and 
domed crown) struck me as Orchard-like, as did the bill, which seems fairly 
short, thin and straight. In many of the photos of the bird at the feeder, the 
crown profile seems much flatter with very little slope to the forehead. 


5. Extent of yellow below -- Aside from a bit of washed-out gray on the lower 
flanks, this bird is almost entirely yellow below, with the yellow on the 
throat and breast being most intense and the yellow on the vent and undertail 
coverts also being quite intense. 


6. Size -- The bird was seen on the seed feeder and on the ground in close 
proximity to both House Finches and House Sparrows and it landed on a fence 
where White-crowned Sparrows were often landing. It seemed to be much closer in 
size to those species than say a Red-winged Blackbird, which was also visiting 
the feeder on occasion. It seemed too small for a Bullock's Oriole. Photos 
9,10, and 11 show it on the ground next to House Sparrows. 


7. Potential for misleading photo effects -- Most of the best photos of this 
bird have been taken while it feeds on a seed feeder in a small courtyard in 
the complex of buildings at the Hatfield Marine Science Center. As you can see 
in image #5, there is a large hummingbird feeder filled with red-colored nectar 
hanging about two feet from the seed feeder, with both feeders hanging from an 
overhang of the building probably less than three feet out from a bank of 
windows that runs all along the side of the building. These photos were mostly 
taken during the afternoon hours, when the sun angle is from the west–to the 
left in this image. Note how the entire right side of the seed feeder is 
reflecting red from light refracting off of the hummer feeder and to a lesser 
extent off the windows. While some have suggested that this should not have had 
much impact on the colors of the bird shown in these images, I think it is a 
factor in how orangish the bird looks in many photos. At this time of year, the 
sun angle is from the south and then southwest later in the day, which tends to 
make birds look more reddish/orangish in color, particularly during the 
afternoon hours.  


When we left the coast on Saturday night, we were convinced that the bird was 
an Orchard Oriole. Upon reviewing our photos last night and some email 
exchanges with others since then, our certainty about the ID of this bird has 
withered. I can't recall seeing an oriole that was so confusing, so I await 
enlightenment. 


Dave Irons
Portland, OR  
                         
Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html


Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html

Subject: Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole
From: Peter Pyle <ppyle AT BIRDPOP.ORG>
Date: Wed, 6 Jan 2016 08:59:32 -0800
Hi Dave and all -

This appears to be an adult female, not a 
first-winter bird, which may be part of the 
problem. I base this on the even look to the wing 
coverts (i.e. no molt limits), blackish rather 
than brownish primary coverts, and broad and 
unworn-looking rectrices. We typically do not see 
fresh basic plumages north of the border in 
either Bullock's or Orchard orioles (both molt in 
the Mexican monsoon area in Aug-Sep and are worn 
by the time they return in spring). As such I 
think it may be just fine for a fresh adult 
female BUOR. If that is a black feather in the 
throat it could even be something that adult 
female BUORs can occasionally show, especially if 
the feather was lost and replaced outside of 
normal pigment-deposition cycles. It could also 
have a dash of Baltimore Oriole in it's DNA to 
explain the extensive orange but the bill seems 
thin and I'd think we'd see more dark in the head 
on an adult female, etc., so I'd go with BUOR.

Peter

At 10:15 PM 1/5/2016, David Irons wrote:
>Greetings All,
>
>The gallery of images at the link below show an 
>immature oriole that is wintering at the 
>Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport, 
>Oregon. This bird has now been present for a few 
>weeks. It had been cautiously identified as a 
>young Bullock's by those who live locally and 
>had seen the bird in life and several of us who 
>had seen earlier photos of the bird, which 
>seemed to show black on the throat (doesn't 
>really have that) and what appeared to be a dark 
>stripe behind the eye. At least one photo, taken 
>this past weekend by Craig Tumer, has been 
>circulated on the Facebook Advanced ID page, 
>where additional folks including Joe Morlan have opined that it is a 
Bullock's. 

>

>http://www.birdfellow.com/photos/gallery/954-newport-oregon-oriole-jan-1-2-2016 

>
>This past weekend Shawneen Finnegan and I were 
>over in Newport to do the local CBC. We spent 
>the day on Friday scouting our area and then did 
>the count on Saturday. We saw the bird on both 
>days and found it to look quite different to the 
>naked eye than it has typically appeared in 
>photos. I took all of the photos in the gallery 
>above over those two days. I have shots of the 
>bird in multiple light conditions and at 
>different locations. There are some pitfalls and 
>misleading photo effects that seem to be 
>steering most of the identifications towards 
>Bullock's, even though the bird shows far more 
>extensive color below than any immature/female 
>Bullock's that I've seen. In the field, we felt 
>reasonably confident that this bird was an 
>Orchard Oriole, albeit one that had some 
>features that made us scratch our heads a bit. 
>Here are the aspects of the bird that we found 
>to be either convincing in favor of Orchard, or 
>problematic. Clearly,the apparent orangish tones 
>in the plumage (most apparent in photos and not 
>necessarily so in life) are creating the most questions.
>
>1. Coloration -- The bird consistently appears 
>more orangish-yellow in photos than it seems to 
>the naked eye. Upon finally getting home and 
>off-loading my photos, I was staggered to see 
>how orangish the bird looks in most photos when 
>looking at these images on my computer screen.
>
>2. Dark on the throat -- The bird has an injury 
>that appears as an unfeathered pit part way down 
>the throat and it seems to have a few small 
>flecks of dark feathering on the chin (not 
>noticeable in most photos). In the earlier 
>photos that I saw, shadow from the bill, 
>combined with the dark pitted spot created the 
>illusion of a dark chin/throat patch, which this 
>bird clearly does not have if seen well. Photo 
>#8 is an example of the throat appearing to have a dark patch.
>
>3. Dark post-ocular stripe -- Where the feather 
>tracts along the supercilium area and auriculars 
>meet behind the eye, there is a trough-like 
>indentation that from most viewing angles is in 
>shadow, thus creating the apparent eyeline. At 
>best this trough is slightly darker, but the 
>rather dark conspicuous eyeline that appears in 
>some photos is generally very weak to virtually 
>absent in most images. If you look at photo #6 
>in this gallery, you can see the trough-like indentation behind the eye.
>
>4. Head shape -- Is very plastic from photo to 
>photo. My first good looks at this bird are 
>represented by the first four images in this 
>gallery. After getting this view, I immediately 
>said to Shawneen, "This looks like an Orchard 
>Oriole." Then the bird flew and we both noted 
>the rather small size, short-tailed look, very 
>squared-off tail, and the fairly uniform lemon 
>yellow underparts of the bird. At this point, 
>she agreed that it seemed like an Orchard 
>Oriole. In these first four images, the head 
>shape (steep forehead and domed crown) struck me 
>as Orchard-like, as did the bill, which seems 
>fairly short, thin and straight. In many of the 
>photos of the bird at the feeder, the crown 
>profile seems much flatter with very little slope to the forehead.
>
>5. Extent of yellow below -- Aside from a bit of 
>washed-out gray on the lower flanks, this bird 
>is almost entirely yellow below, with the yellow 
>on the throat and breast being most intense and 
>the yellow on the vent and undertail coverts also being quite intense.
>
>6. Size -- The bird was seen on the seed feeder 
>and on the ground in close proximity to both 
>House Finches and House Sparrows and it landed 
>on a fence where White-crowned Sparrows were 
>often landing. It seemed to be much closer in 
>size to those species than say a Red-winged 
>Blackbird, which was also visiting the feeder on 
>occasion. It seemed too small for a Bullock's 
>Oriole. Photos 9,10, and 11 show it on the ground next to House Sparrows.
>
>7. Potential for misleading photo effects -- 
>Most of the best photos of this bird have been 
>taken while it feeds on a seed feeder in a small 
>courtyard in the complex of buildings at the 
>Hatfield Marine Science Center. As you can see 
>in image #5, there is a large hummingbird feeder 
>filled with red-colored nectar hanging about two 
>feet from the seed feeder, with both feeders 
>hanging from an overhang of the building 
>probably less than three feet out from a bank of 
>windows that runs all along the side of the 
>building. These photos were mostly taken during 
>the afternoon hours, when the sun angle is from 
>the westto the left in this image. Note how the 
>entire right side of the seed feeder is 
>reflecting red from light refracting off of the 
>hummer feeder and to a lesser extent off the 
>windows. While some have suggested that this 
>should not have had much impact on the colors of 
>the bird shown in these images, I think it is a 
>factor in how orangish the bird looks in many 
>photos. At this time of year, the sun angle is 
>from the south and then southwest later in the 
>day, which tends to make birds look more 
>reddish/orangish in color, particularly during the afternoon hours.
>
>When we left the coast on Saturday night, we 
>were convinced that the bird was an Orchard 
>Oriole. Upon reviewing our photos last night and 
>some email exchanges with others since then, our 
>certainty about the ID of this bird has 
>withered. I can't recall seeing an oriole that 
>was so confusing, so I await enlightenment.
>
>Dave Irons
>Portland, OR
>
>Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole
From: Tony Leukering <greatgrayowl AT AOL.COM>
Date: Wed, 6 Jan 2016 11:08:11 -0500
Dave et al.:

I agree with Tim and Terry that I don't see this bird as an Orchard, primarily 
due to size considerations. However, there are features of the bird that seem 
at odds with an ID of Bullock's, particularly the extensiveness of coloration 
underneath and face pattern. In Colorado, we would then immediately start 
considering the "H" word, and I don't see why that hasn't been considered here. 


Tony

 


Tony Leukering
Largo, FL
http://cowyebird.blogspot.com/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/tony_leukering/

http://aba.org/photoquiz/

 

 

-----Original Message-----
From: Tim Janzen 
To: BIRDWG01 
Sent: Wed, Jan 6, 2016 4:26 am
Subject: Re: [BIRDWG01] Newport, Oregon Oriole

Dear Dave,
When I looked at these photos earlier this afternoon after you posted the
link to them on OBOL my impression was that the bird is a Bullock's Oriole.
In my opinion the bird seems to be a little too big to be an Orchard Oriole.
This bird was discussed this evening at Portland Audubon's Birder's Night
and several of the birders there who had seen the bird thought that it was
on the small side for a Bullock's Oriole.  However, in looking at your
photos of the bird, particularly the one at
http://www.birdfellow.com/photos/thumbnails/954-newport-oregon-oriole-jan-1-
2-2016?id=13463 where the oriole is seen with a House Sparrow, it appears to
me that the ratio of the lengths of the two birds is about 1.35:1.  A House
Sparrow should be about 6 1/4 inches long.  Therefore the length of the
oriole should be about 8 1/2 inches.  This would be consistent with the
length of an average Bullock's Oriole.  In addition, the bill doesn't seem
to be quite as decurved as I would expect for an Orchard Oriole.  The
contrast between the grayish green back and the orange-green rump also seems
to point in favor of the ID as being that of a Bullock's Oriole.  If this an
Orchard Oriole, it seems to have more orange tones in it than I would expect
on an Orchard Oriole.  The orange/yellow coloration seems to extend down
further on breast than one would expect for a Bullock's Oriole, but the
lower belly of the bird does appear to have some gray tones, which would be
consistent with the identification of the bird as a Bullock's Oriole.
Immature male Orchard Orioles seem to have yellowish coloration extending
from the breast all of the way down to the vent based on a series of photos
I have reviewed.  Another photo of the bird taken by Andy Frank is also
available for review at
http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-2pSfRw9y1BU/VowmTUKrPHI/AAAAAAAAusU/Vyn8j5Avs20/s1
600/Birds%2B2016%2B004.JPG. Input from others who have extensive experience
with wintering Bullock's Orioles and Orchard Orioles would be helpful.  
Sincerely,
Tim Janzen
Portland, Oregon

-----Original Message-----
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification
[mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of David Irons
Sent: Tuesday, January 5, 2016 10:15 PM
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: [BIRDWG01] Newport, Oregon Oriole

Greetings All,

The gallery of images at the link below show an immature oriole that is
wintering at the Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport, Oregon. This
bird has now been present for a few weeks. It had been cautiously identified
as a young Bullock's by those who live locally and had seen the bird in life
and several of us who had seen earlier photos of the bird, which seemed to
show black on the throat (doesn't really have that) and what appeared to be
a dark stripe behind the eye. At least one photo, taken this past weekend by
Craig Tumer, has been circulated on the Facebook Advanced ID page, where
additional folks including Joe Morlan have opined that it is a Bullock's.

http://www.birdfellow.com/photos/gallery/954-newport-oregon-oriole-jan-1-2-2
016

This past weekend Shawneen Finnegan and I were over in Newport to do the
local CBC. We spent the day on Friday scouting our area and then did the
count on Saturday. We saw the bird on both days and found it to look quite
different to the naked eye than it has typically appeared in photos. I took
all of the photos in the gallery above over those two days. I have shots of
the bird in multiple light conditions and at different locations. There are
some pitfalls and misleading photo effects that seem to be steering most of
the identifications towards Bullock's, even though the bird shows far more
extensive color below than any immature/female Bullock's that I've seen. In
the field, we felt reasonably confident that this bird was an Orchard
Oriole, albeit one that had some features that made us scratch our heads a
bit. Here are the aspects of the bird that we found to be either convincing
in favor of Orchard, or problematic. Clearly,the apparent orangish tones in
the plumage (most apparent in photos and not necessarily so in life) are
creating the most questions. 

1. Coloration -- The bird consistently appears more orangish-yellow in
photos than it seems to the naked eye. Upon finally getting home and
off-loading my photos, I was staggered to see how orangish the bird looks in
most photos when looking at these images on my computer screen.

2. Dark on the throat -- The bird has an injury that appears as an
unfeathered pit part way down the throat and it seems to have a few small
flecks of dark feathering on the chin (not noticeable in most photos). In
the earlier photos that I saw, shadow from the bill, combined with the dark
pitted spot created the illusion of a dark chin/throat patch, which this
bird clearly does not have if seen well. Photo #8 is an example of the
throat appearing to have a dark patch. 

3. Dark post-ocular stripe -- Where the feather tracts along the supercilium
area and auriculars meet behind the eye, there is a trough-like indentation
that from most viewing angles is in shadow, thus creating the apparent
eyeline. At best this trough is slightly darker, but the rather dark
conspicuous eyeline that appears in some photos is generally very weak to
virtually absent in most images. If you look at photo #6 in this gallery,
you can see the trough-like indentation behind the eye.

4. Head shape -- Is very plastic from photo to photo. My first good looks at
this bird are represented by the first four images in this gallery. After
getting this view, I immediately said to Shawneen, "This looks like an
Orchard Oriole." Then the bird flew and we both noted the rather small size,
short-tailed look, very squared-off tail, and the fairly uniform lemon
yellow underparts of the bird. At this point, she agreed that it seemed like
an Orchard Oriole. In these first four images, the head shape (steep
forehead and domed crown) struck me as Orchard-like, as did the bill, which
seems fairly short, thin and straight. In many of the photos of the bird at
the feeder, the crown profile seems much flatter with very little slope to
the forehead.

5. Extent of yellow below -- Aside from a bit of washed-out gray on the
lower flanks, this bird is almost entirely yellow below, with the yellow on
the throat and breast being most intense and the yellow on the vent and
undertail coverts also being quite intense. 

6. Size -- The bird was seen on the seed feeder and on the ground in close
proximity to both House Finches and House Sparrows and it landed on a fence
where White-crowned Sparrows were often landing. It seemed to be much closer
in size to those species than say a Red-winged Blackbird, which was also
visiting the feeder on occasion. It seemed too small for a Bullock's Oriole.
Photos 9,10, and 11 show it on the ground next to House Sparrows.

7. Potential for misleading photo effects -- Most of the best photos of this
bird have been taken while it feeds on a seed feeder in a small courtyard in
the complex of buildings at the Hatfield Marine Science Center. As you can
see in image #5, there is a large hummingbird feeder filled with red-colored
nectar hanging about two feet from the seed feeder, with both feeders
hanging from an overhang of the building probably less than three feet out
from a bank of windows that runs all along the side of the building. These
photos were mostly taken during the afternoon hours, when the sun angle is
from the west-to the left in this image. Note how the entire right side of
the seed feeder is reflecting red from light refracting off of the hummer
feeder and to a lesser extent off the windows. While some have suggested
that this should not have had much impact on the colors of the bird shown in
these images, I think it is a factor in how orangish the bird looks in many
photos. At this time of year, the sun angle is from the south and then
southwest later in the day, which tends to make birds look more
reddish/orangish in color, particularly during the afternoon hours.  

When we left the coast on Saturday night, we were convinced that the bird
was an Orchard Oriole. Upon reviewing our photos last night and some email
exchanges with others since then, our certainty about the ID of this bird
has withered. I can't recall seeing an oriole that was so confusing, so I
await enlightenment.

Dave Irons
Portland, OR   
 		 	   		 
Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html



Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole
From: Terry Bronson <bronsonwv AT GMAIL.COM>
Date: Wed, 6 Jan 2016 07:40:08 -0500
I see Orchard Orioles regularly in West Virginia, where they are very
common. Bullock's Oriole has never been recorded here, and I have virtually
no experience with that species.

I would NOT call this an Orchard Oriole for the following reasons:

1. To me Orchard Oriole is a "cute" bird; this bird in some of the photos
has a "fierce" appearance.

2. Orchard Orioles are less bulky than House Sparrows,which are less bulky
than Bullock's Orioles. According to the Sibley guide, average weight for
Orchard is 0.67 oz. (19 grams); average weight for House Sparrows is 0.98
oz. (28 grams); average weight for Bullock's is 1.3 oz (36 grams). In the
photos that include a House Sparrow, the oriole is clearly a much bulkier
bird.

3. Although Bullock's generally show much white or dirty white on the
underparts below the breast, this is variable. James D. Rising in his Birds
of North America Online account of Bullock's states: "Yellow in Bullock’s
Oriole extremely variable, ranging from lemon yellow to bright orange
yellow, similar to color of Baltimore Oriole; at least some of this
variability reflects diet (JDR)."

4. A couple of the photos appear to show faint streaking on the clearly
gray back, which is a trait of Bullock's. Orchards do not show such
streaking and the back is more greenish than gray.

A vagrant female Hooded Oriole, which looks very much like a female Orchard
Oriole, is a possibility in Oregon, according to the Sibley range map.
However, at 0.84 oz. (24 grams), it is also less bulky than a House Sparow,

So I'd have to say this appears to be a Bullock's Oriole.

Terry Bronson
Morgantown, WV

On Wed, Jan 6, 2016 at 1:15 AM, David Irons  wrote:

> Greetings All,
>
> The gallery of images at the link below show an immature oriole that is
> wintering at the Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport, Oregon. This
> bird has now been present for a few weeks. It had been cautiously
> identified as a young Bullock's by those who live locally and had seen the
> bird in life and several of us who had seen earlier photos of the bird,
> which seemed to show black on the throat (doesn't really have that) and
> what appeared to be a dark stripe behind the eye. At least one photo, taken
> this past weekend by Craig Tumer, has been circulated on the Facebook
> Advanced ID page, where additional folks including Joe Morlan have opined
> that it is a Bullock's.
>
>
> 
http://www.birdfellow.com/photos/gallery/954-newport-oregon-oriole-jan-1-2-2016 

>
> This past weekend Shawneen Finnegan and I were over in Newport to do the
> local CBC. We spent the day on Friday scouting our area and then did the
> count on Saturday. We saw the bird on both days and found it to look quite
> different to the naked eye than it has typically appeared in photos. I took
> all of the photos in the gallery above over those two days. I have shots of
> the bird in multiple light conditions and at different locations. There are
> some pitfalls and misleading photo effects that seem to be steering most of
> the identifications towards Bullock's, even though the bird shows far more
> extensive color below than any immature/female Bullock's that I've seen. In
> the field, we felt reasonably confident that this bird was an Orchard
> Oriole, albeit one that had some features that made us scratch our heads a
> bit. Here are the aspects of the bird that we found to be either convincing
> in favor of Orchard, or problematic. Clearly,the apparent orangish tones in
> the plumage (most apparent in photos and not necessarily so in life) are
> creating the most questions.
>
> 1. Coloration -- The bird consistently appears more orangish-yellow in
> photos than it seems to the naked eye. Upon finally getting home and
> off-loading my photos, I was staggered to see how orangish the bird looks
> in most photos when looking at these images on my computer screen.
>
> 2. Dark on the throat -- The bird has an injury that appears as an
> unfeathered pit part way down the throat and it seems to have a few small
> flecks of dark feathering on the chin (not noticeable in most photos). In
> the earlier photos that I saw, shadow from the bill, combined with the dark
> pitted spot created the illusion of a dark chin/throat patch, which this
> bird clearly does not have if seen well. Photo #8 is an example of the
> throat appearing to have a dark patch.
>
> 3. Dark post-ocular stripe -- Where the feather tracts along the
> supercilium area and auriculars meet behind the eye, there is a trough-like
> indentation that from most viewing angles is in shadow, thus creating the
> apparent eyeline. At best this trough is slightly darker, but the rather
> dark conspicuous eyeline that appears in some photos is generally very weak
> to virtually absent in most images. If you look at photo #6 in this
> gallery, you can see the trough-like indentation behind the eye.
>
> 4. Head shape -- Is very plastic from photo to photo. My first good looks
> at this bird are represented by the first four images in this gallery.
> After getting this view, I immediately said to Shawneen, "This looks like
> an Orchard Oriole." Then the bird flew and we both noted the rather small
> size, short-tailed look, very squared-off tail, and the fairly uniform
> lemon yellow underparts of the bird. At this point, she agreed that it
> seemed like an Orchard Oriole. In these first four images, the head shape
> (steep forehead and domed crown) struck me as Orchard-like, as did the
> bill, which seems fairly short, thin and straight. In many of the photos of
> the bird at the feeder, the crown profile seems much flatter with very
> little slope to the forehead.
>
> 5. Extent of yellow below -- Aside from a bit of washed-out gray on the
> lower flanks, this bird is almost entirely yellow below, with the yellow on
> the throat and breast being most intense and the yellow on the vent and
> undertail coverts also being quite intense.
>
> 6. Size -- The bird was seen on the seed feeder and on the ground in close
> proximity to both House Finches and House Sparrows and it landed on a fence
> where White-crowned Sparrows were often landing. It seemed to be much
> closer in size to those species than say a Red-winged Blackbird, which was
> also visiting the feeder on occasion. It seemed too small for a Bullock's
> Oriole. Photos 9,10, and 11 show it on the ground next to House Sparrows.
>
> 7. Potential for misleading photo effects -- Most of the best photos of
> this bird have been taken while it feeds on a seed feeder in a small
> courtyard in the complex of buildings at the Hatfield Marine Science
> Center. As you can see in image #5, there is a large hummingbird feeder
> filled with red-colored nectar hanging about two feet from the seed feeder,
> with both feeders hanging from an overhang of the building probably less
> than three feet out from a bank of windows that runs all along the side of
> the building. These photos were mostly taken during the afternoon hours,
> when the sun angle is from the west–to the left in this image. Note how the
> entire right side of the seed feeder is reflecting red from light
> refracting off of the hummer feeder and to a lesser extent off the windows.
> While some have suggested that this should not have had much impact on the
> colors of the bird shown in these images, I think it is a factor in how
> orangish the bird looks in many photos. At this time of year, the sun angle
> is from the south and then southwest later in the day, which tends to make
> birds look more reddish/orangish in color, particularly during the
> afternoon hours.
>
> When we left the coast on Saturday night, we were convinced that the bird
> was an Orchard Oriole. Upon reviewing our photos last night and some email
> exchanges with others since then, our certainty about the ID of this bird
> has withered. I can't recall seeing an oriole that was so confusing, so I
> await enlightenment.
>
> Dave Irons
> Portland, OR
>
> Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
>



-- 
Terry Bronson
Morgantown, WV

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html
Subject: Re: Newport, Oregon Oriole
From: Tim Janzen <tjanzen AT COMCAST.NET>
Date: Wed, 6 Jan 2016 00:56:03 -0800
Dear Dave,
When I looked at these photos earlier this afternoon after you posted the
link to them on OBOL my impression was that the bird is a Bullock's Oriole.
In my opinion the bird seems to be a little too big to be an Orchard Oriole.
This bird was discussed this evening at Portland Audubon's Birder's Night
and several of the birders there who had seen the bird thought that it was
on the small side for a Bullock's Oriole.  However, in looking at your
photos of the bird, particularly the one at
http://www.birdfellow.com/photos/thumbnails/954-newport-oregon-oriole-jan-1-
2-2016?id=13463 where the oriole is seen with a House Sparrow, it appears to
me that the ratio of the lengths of the two birds is about 1.35:1.  A House
Sparrow should be about 6 1/4 inches long.  Therefore the length of the
oriole should be about 8 1/2 inches.  This would be consistent with the
length of an average Bullock's Oriole.  In addition, the bill doesn't seem
to be quite as decurved as I would expect for an Orchard Oriole.  The
contrast between the grayish green back and the orange-green rump also seems
to point in favor of the ID as being that of a Bullock's Oriole.  If this an
Orchard Oriole, it seems to have more orange tones in it than I would expect
on an Orchard Oriole.  The orange/yellow coloration seems to extend down
further on breast than one would expect for a Bullock's Oriole, but the
lower belly of the bird does appear to have some gray tones, which would be
consistent with the identification of the bird as a Bullock's Oriole.
Immature male Orchard Orioles seem to have yellowish coloration extending
from the breast all of the way down to the vent based on a series of photos
I have reviewed.  Another photo of the bird taken by Andy Frank is also
available for review at
http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-2pSfRw9y1BU/VowmTUKrPHI/AAAAAAAAusU/Vyn8j5Avs20/s1
600/Birds%2B2016%2B004.JPG.  Input from others who have extensive experience
with wintering Bullock's Orioles and Orchard Orioles would be helpful.  
Sincerely,
Tim Janzen
Portland, Oregon

-----Original Message-----
From: NBHC ID-FRONTIERS Frontiers of Field Identification
[mailto:BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On Behalf Of David Irons
Sent: Tuesday, January 5, 2016 10:15 PM
To: BIRDWG01 AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: [BIRDWG01] Newport, Oregon Oriole

Greetings All,

The gallery of images at the link below show an immature oriole that is
wintering at the Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport, Oregon. This
bird has now been present for a few weeks. It had been cautiously identified
as a young Bullock's by those who live locally and had seen the bird in life
and several of us who had seen earlier photos of the bird, which seemed to
show black on the throat (doesn't really have that) and what appeared to be
a dark stripe behind the eye. At least one photo, taken this past weekend by
Craig Tumer, has been circulated on the Facebook Advanced ID page, where
additional folks including Joe Morlan have opined that it is a Bullock's.

http://www.birdfellow.com/photos/gallery/954-newport-oregon-oriole-jan-1-2-2
016

This past weekend Shawneen Finnegan and I were over in Newport to do the
local CBC. We spent the day on Friday scouting our area and then did the
count on Saturday. We saw the bird on both days and found it to look quite
different to the naked eye than it has typically appeared in photos. I took
all of the photos in the gallery above over those two days. I have shots of
the bird in multiple light conditions and at different locations. There are
some pitfalls and misleading photo effects that seem to be steering most of
the identifications towards Bullock's, even though the bird shows far more
extensive color below than any immature/female Bullock's that I've seen. In
the field, we felt reasonably confident that this bird was an Orchard
Oriole, albeit one that had some features that made us scratch our heads a
bit. Here are the aspects of the bird that we found to be either convincing
in favor of Orchard, or problematic. Clearly,the apparent orangish tones in
the plumage (most apparent in photos and not necessarily so in life) are
creating the most questions. 

1. Coloration -- The bird consistently appears more orangish-yellow in
photos than it seems to the naked eye. Upon finally getting home and
off-loading my photos, I was staggered to see how orangish the bird looks in
most photos when looking at these images on my computer screen.

2. Dark on the throat -- The bird has an injury that appears as an
unfeathered pit part way down the throat and it seems to have a few small
flecks of dark feathering on the chin (not noticeable in most photos). In
the earlier photos that I saw, shadow from the bill, combined with the dark
pitted spot created the illusion of a dark chin/throat patch, which this
bird clearly does not have if seen well. Photo #8 is an example of the
throat appearing to have a dark patch. 

3. Dark post-ocular stripe -- Where the feather tracts along the supercilium
area and auriculars meet behind the eye, there is a trough-like indentation
that from most viewing angles is in shadow, thus creating the apparent
eyeline. At best this trough is slightly darker, but the rather dark
conspicuous eyeline that appears in some photos is generally very weak to
virtually absent in most images. If you look at photo #6 in this gallery,
you can see the trough-like indentation behind the eye.

4. Head shape -- Is very plastic from photo to photo. My first good looks at
this bird are represented by the first four images in this gallery. After
getting this view, I immediately said to Shawneen, "This looks like an
Orchard Oriole." Then the bird flew and we both noted the rather small size,
short-tailed look, very squared-off tail, and the fairly uniform lemon
yellow underparts of the bird. At this point, she agreed that it seemed like
an Orchard Oriole. In these first four images, the head shape (steep
forehead and domed crown) struck me as Orchard-like, as did the bill, which
seems fairly short, thin and straight. In many of the photos of the bird at
the feeder, the crown profile seems much flatter with very little slope to
the forehead.

5. Extent of yellow below -- Aside from a bit of washed-out gray on the
lower flanks, this bird is almost entirely yellow below, with the yellow on
the throat and breast being most intense and the yellow on the vent and
undertail coverts also being quite intense. 

6. Size -- The bird was seen on the seed feeder and on the ground in close
proximity to both House Finches and House Sparrows and it landed on a fence
where White-crowned Sparrows were often landing. It seemed to be much closer
in size to those species than say a Red-winged Blackbird, which was also
visiting the feeder on occasion. It seemed too small for a Bullock's Oriole.
Photos 9,10, and 11 show it on the ground next to House Sparrows.

7. Potential for misleading photo effects -- Most of the best photos of this
bird have been taken while it feeds on a seed feeder in a small courtyard in
the complex of buildings at the Hatfield Marine Science Center. As you can
see in image #5, there is a large hummingbird feeder filled with red-colored
nectar hanging about two feet from the seed feeder, with both feeders
hanging from an overhang of the building probably less than three feet out
from a bank of windows that runs all along the side of the building. These
photos were mostly taken during the afternoon hours, when the sun angle is
from the west-to the left in this image. Note how the entire right side of
the seed feeder is reflecting red from light refracting off of the hummer
feeder and to a lesser extent off the windows. While some have suggested
that this should not have had much impact on the colors of the bird shown in
these images, I think it is a factor in how orangish the bird looks in many
photos. At this time of year, the sun angle is from the south and then
southwest later in the day, which tends to make birds look more
reddish/orangish in color, particularly during the afternoon hours.  

When we left the coast on Saturday night, we were convinced that the bird
was an Orchard Oriole. Upon reviewing our photos last night and some email
exchanges with others since then, our certainty about the ID of this bird
has withered. I can't recall seeing an oriole that was so confusing, so I
await enlightenment.

Dave Irons
Portland, OR   
 		 	   		  
Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html

Archives: http://listserv.ksu.edu/archives/birdwg01.html