Harris' Sparrow Photo & Other Birds 2/01/04
This morning, with a slight drizzle and persistent mist from yesterday's
rains still evident, Arthur & Anne Wilson and I set out to find the
Harris' Sparrow in Hendry County that has been present for over a week
now. Our main goal was to get a photo of the bird if possible despite the
weather and the fact that this bird isn't a very cooperative subject.
Arthur succeeded anyway! You can see a small photo of the bird by going
http://home.swfla.rr.com/vlucas/HASP.jpg (watch your syntax).
The bird had moved about 100 yards or so south of the location from where
Alan Murray had originally found the bird and from where Vince McGrath
and I refound it last week. Mark Berney gets credit for tracking down
this bird's new location yesterday. A note about the photo & the bird.
This is a first-winter bird. It is a large sparrow! Notice the pink bill,
the brownish head having a "chesnut crescent" (per Rising) on the ear
coverts. A hint of a black bib outline can be seen on the part of the
exposed throat. The tertials are streaked whitish. The tail is longish
and is not rounded. The undertail coverts appear yellow but this is a
trick of the poor lighting I think.
Until even better photos can be taken of this bird (if that does occur),
this photowill have to suffice. Arthur Wilson is to be congratulated for
getting even this picture of this difficult subject.
For directions to the Harris' Sparrow location, consult earlier posts in
the archives from me and others.
We also had some other great birds this morning. I even added a new
Collier County bird for my county list. We had over 100 Black-bellied
Whistling-Ducks in two groups in a wetland along C.R. 858 as you head
east about a mile before it makes it's turn to the north along the
Collier/Hendrey County line. BBWDs are definitely uncommon in Collier
County! At this same location, we had a juvenile Purple Gallinule and a
Swamp Sparrow along with the other expected birds. near the Hendry County
correctional Facility, along the powerlines, we had over a half-dozen or
so Scissor-tailed Flycatchers and as many Western Kingbirds.
In the general vicinity of the Harris' Sparrow location, we failed to
find Alan Murray's Yellow-breasted Chat from yesterday but we did see
quite a few Painted and Indigo Buntings along with other good birds
including Prairie Warbler, Sharp-shinned Hawk, Sandhill Crane, Crested
Caracara, Eastern Meadowlark, Wood Stork, Wilson's Snipe, Greater &
Lesser Yellowlegs, Glossy Ibis, Great Crested Flycatcher, Common
A stop at Corkscrew Sanctuary yielded Northern Parula, screaming Limpkin,
and hooting Barred Owl among the other "expected" species. All in all, it
was a great day to be out birding.