Rockfish Valley Trail 9/11/12

All photos are Marshall Faintich


I headed over to the trail early afternoon, but did not expect to see too much at this time of day. I was immediately greeted by a Red-tailed Hawk, and then, except for a Palm Warbler, saw typical late summer birds until near the end of my hike. I logged 22 species on the trail this afternoon.


Red-tailed Hawk


Red-tailed Hawk

As I hiked the downstream trail, a large golden bird landed in a small tree a few feet in front of me. It was a Bobolink in non-breeding plumage. This is only the second time I have seen this species on the trail.


Bobolink


Bobolink


Bobolink

Shortly after making the turn onto Glenthorne Loop, I saw a small sparrow(?) in the brush. My first reaction was a Field Sparrow, but this bird has a bold eye ring; a finely streaked breast with a possible central breast spot; a bi-colored bill; and a yellowish throat, belly, vent, and undertail. It appears to be a juvenile, but I have never seen a Field Sparrow that looks like this bird. All suggestions are welcomed.


Unknown Sparrow


Unknown Sparrow


Unknown Sparrow

[Update: Three birders have suggested that the sparrow is a juvenile Vesper Sparrow]



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