Sunday, March 8, 2009

Identifying a bird from bad pictures

Now, you have to realize the tree outside of my work gave me
the most exciting adventure ever when I identified a Female
American Kestrel and watched and documented it's journey
with a mate, nesting, and fledging 6 babies... If you are new to
my blog you can check it out here

That being said I look at the tree many times a day
just waiting to see the Kestrel return. Last week one day
I looked out and was just beside myself thinking 'It's
back'! My pictures are just awful as I had to shoot into
the sun...but I thought it was the right shape and size..

I came home and joyfully announced my discovery to my
Best friend Barbie and she and I together started to look
at what identifying marks we could find..
I wanted to believe it was the Kestrel, but she informed me
she had seen a Merlin in that vicinity just a few days before.
So we looked at the chest.... darker streaks than the Kestrel
We looked at the eye stripes... much lighter than the Kestrel

This is the Am. Kestrel and you can see the lighter chest

And much stronger darker eye stripes

Then came the tell -tale proof... the Tail feathers.

The Merlin here has white barring and the Kestrel does not
Their feathers are brown and black.
I was so disappointed, but hey! the Merlin is a life bird for me.

I can't wait until I look out and(in good light) see an
American Kestrel like this one from last year.

To God be the Glory ~~ Great Things He Hath Done


Ruth's Photo Blog said...

I am glad you were able to add a new bird to your list.

Tina said...

I would love to look out my window and see either one!! What an great thrill this must have been..and then to solve the mystery with a birder friend...sounds like fun!
That last photo, from your pic file, was beautiful and what a pose to capture with your camera!!
Congrats on adding another bird to your list!

Bird Girl said...

That was fun! To look at that same tree and see a bird so similar - who would ever thing that a Merlin would appear - like magic! I wish the light would have been good - but ya take what ya get! Maybe that bird will be back - but like you...I can't wait for Kestrels to start a new nest!!! That last picture is a real beauty!!! Love it!

The Birdlady said...

I too can hardly wait - those photos last year were amazing - more, more, please.

Marsha said...

I loved this comparsion of the two birds the differences that I never knew before.

I hope the kestrels nest in the neighboring building again this year so we can watch them raise a family via your wonderful photos.

HANNIBAL said...

A merlin is a great find! Don't worry, your Kestral will be back! That last shot is really impressive!

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