Tuesday, October 14, 2008

White-crowned Sparrow

Migratory sparrow numbers continue to increase at Pheasant Branch prairie, but no Harris's Sparrow yet! As far as natural lighting goes, this October has been a photographer's dream. It's nice when all the elements come together, but if you go digiscoping often enough, on occasion the truly remarkable happens. This morning as I stood on the trail with my scope and camera aimed at a particular branch, a gorgeous adult White-crowned Sparrow popped right into the frame. I so love the easy ones! This seemed like such a challenging species to get good photographs of when I first began digiscoping.

White-crowned Sparrow

Jeff Bahls posted the following to the Wisconsin Birding Network:
Sparrow Identification

The next meeting of the Horicon Marsh Bird Club is October 16th, and will feature Tom Schultz, who will speak on the identification of Wisconsin's sparrows. This meeting will be held at 7 p.m. at the Horicon DNR field station located at the north end of Palmitory Street in Horicon.

NOTE: The DNR "Field Office", on N. Palmitory St. is the location of the HMBC meetings during the construction of the Horicon Marsh International Education Center.

Autumn is a great time to look for sparrows, as flocks gather and migrate southward. This PowerPoint presentation will provide a systematic overview of the identification of Wisconsin's sparrows, discussing some of the reasons why these birds provide such a challenge for birders. Tom will examine the various groups, and look at the some of the distinctive structural and plumage characteristics of each - which will hopefully provide a useful structure that will enable you to identify the various sparrows that you encounter in the field.

All images © 2008 Mike McDowell

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