1. A couple other options for bird identification: (1) according to Project Feeder Watch you can send them a photo if you are unable to make an identification after trying more conventional means (see http://www.birds.cornell.edu/pfw/AboutBirdsandFeeding/BirdIdentification.htm) and (2) if you have a Flickr account, you can upload photos to the Bird Identification Help Group (http://www.flickr.com/groups/bird_id_group/). Even when I’ve shared poor quality photos (blurry, dark, etc.), the people there have been very helpful and they’ve always come up with the bird’s identity.


    1. Thanks! I’ve decided it’s a 1st year White-crowned Sparrow. It showed up a couple days ago with two mature White-crowned Sparrows, with the distinctive black and white striped heads. I so wish I’d captured a photo of one of them!


  2. According to the Sibley’s (2003) guide here, I would say it’s a 1st Winter White-crowned Sparrow for two reasons. One, the bill of the Golden-crowned Sparrow is supposed to be grayish, and the bill of the White-crowned Sparrow is supposed to be pinkish-orange to orange. Two, the eyebrow is clearly defined on the White-crowned Sparrow and more plain, indistinct on the Yellow-crowned.

    Kudos on the camera work though, I can’t even get my dog to stay in focus let alone a tiny bird.


      1. Yes, Sibley’s shows a narrow yellow-ish stripe on the crown 1st winter; and it says the Pacific variety has a yellower bill than the other variety. It’s possible you have Golden’s there though as the Winter is when they should be coastal Calif.


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