Noel Wamer wrote:

> Returning to the Rufous/Allen's analogy, it may even be reasonable to
> assume that more than 10 percent of the "Gray-cheeked" observed along
> the Atlantic coast are Bicknell's.

Old Tom Beatty out in SE Arizona, who currently has the U.S.'s hottest
hummer spectacle going, says if you've seen 100 Rufous/Allens (something
quite possibly done on his property in a day in August--right, Roger?),
then you've probably seen about 10 Allen's, so go ahead and count it!  (He
was kidding... I think).

> So if we are satisfied with assigning ambiguous birds to the
> Rufous/Allen's slot, why are we not using the Gray-cheeked/Bicknell's
> slot for these thrushes if they are not positively identified?

You're absolutely right.  I've held that view for a long time.  The law of
probability should not be used as a fieldmark for a conclusive
identification.  We hedge on CBCs with the two scaup, crows, etc., when we
don't have a close view (or vocal clues).

Brad Bergstrom, Ph.D., Professor           TEL  229-333-5770 /-5759
Department of Biology                      FAX  229-245-6585
Valdosta State University                  e-mail: [log in to unmask]
Valdosta, GA 31698-0015                    Home: 229-333-0743
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