Posted by David Fix (22.214.171.124) on October 09, 2000 at 12:39:11:
After I posted my thoughts on the right-hand bird I felt a strange feeling about the image. Looking back, I wonder why this warbler, if it is a Mac, doesn't show greater symmetry in the eye-arcs. Why is the upper arc so brief? What is the meaning of the pale area in the supralores? And I can't dismiss the seemingly 'real' streaks on the sides. Also, the breast band, such as it is, seems composed of blurry streaks. I think Dave Irons might have this one right, believing it is an Orange-crown. Obviously if I saw the bird in life it would remain a mystery (between an Oporornis and an Orange-crowned)for but a moment. The one Mac I've seen that really resembled this individual had symmetrical eye-arcs, lacked the supraloral white area, and did not have the dark pinch-in across the breast so blurry (and it also chipped just like a Mac - 12/23/95, Arcata). I am going to recant because I don't see Macs with side streaks, nor with strongly asymmetrical eye-arcs on a given side of the face. I am aware of the pitfall posed by this ID problem, and can deal with it in the field, but one image on a monitor gives me pause. This isn't a field problem, it's a photo quiz, so instead of dealing with a living bird with its nuances of call-notes, postures, and other marks, all we have to deal with is one shot and our own set of experiences and the dangers of our preconceptions. I'm going to find another late fall Mac and I don't want my friends to think I might be taken in by a confusing bird of this sort. So there.
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