Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Bird of the Day: Through a thick fog, a Lincoln's Sparrow

You're right. I get no rewards tonight for excellent photography. Conditions were really dismal, with fog and heavy overcast, plus it was after 4:00 PM and the sun was going down. It was an atrocious time to be trying to photograph birds.

But...I got a new one today! I'm pretty sure today's little visitors are Lincoln's Sparrows (Melospiza lincolnii), although as always I am open to gentle corrections. I'm pretty sure I've seen them before, but it has taken some time to develop an eye that indicates to me that these aren't House Sparrows.
The birds (there were a fair number of them) were hanging out near the pond in our West Campus "mini-wilderness". There are some abandoned trees growing wild in a vacant lot between a continuation school and juvenile hall where I saw what I thought were stubborn leaves, but they were moving.
Lincoln's Sparrows are a common species, but they are also diminutive and like to hang out in the underbrush. They breed in the north, but range all the way from Alaska and Canada to Central America. And I've never knowingly seen one before. As I keep saying, it's fun to be an amateur, since one gets to see something new all the time.

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