Posted by: atowhee | April 4, 2023



Even in the bird world there are alternative facts and social media screaming isn’t gonna make the truth clearer. It is an absolute either-or. Either the ivory-bill is extinct or it is not. Yes or no? That’s what I know. But I have no further experience or relevant evidence. Click here for one journalist’s take on the either-or.

The real answer would come from a zillion trailcams recording southern forest flight, but whose gonna fund that? Elon Musk?

A very different bird world controversy–for this there is no dispute over facts–this is how to react to what we know. Audubon up? Or Audubon down? Click here for one birder’s case for Audubon gone.

UC Berkeley peregrines are Instagram hits–eggs expecting. Click here.

A Cooper’s Hawk hunting near the Durant olive press south of Dundee:

A couple of curious critters at Durant:

Juncos and goldfinches, the left-most goldfinch is a male lesser, the others are up-sized Americans:

Molting season:

The natives nervously eye a large predator on Minto-Brown. I only took their picture:

Yesterday at Riverfront Park there was one of the nesting adult Golden Eagles. At the same time a third year and an Osprey came soaring by. Despite the cold wind, Tree Swallows were fly-catching at their usual speed.
In our garden the Varied Thrush and White-throated Sparrow have departed. The latter replaced by an arriving white-crown. Golden-crowns and Fox Sparrows linger. Seen carrying nesting material recently: crow, and Steller’s Jay. One turkey makes sporadic feeding forays here. I don’t expect numbers like 17 or 21 again until August when this year’s hatchlings begin to fly.

At Brooks Winery in south Yamhill County today I spoke with their grounds-keeper. She tells me the nesters there include bluebird, kestrel and white-crowns. She has been seeing White-tailed Kites nearby! This afternoon a white-crown was on the roof, singing. A male Anna’s was “owning” the blooming currant bushes.


Here are three fine finch fotos–all from Marty Karlin, taken in Jackson County. Herewith, Finch Feathers 101. All three similar finches–house, “purple,” and Cassin’s get their reddish hues from dietary carotene. That varies widely from one bird to the next, one season to the next, one menu to the next. The orange bird (a “purple”) has a very colorful carotene mix shading its plumage:

Top four are “purples”. Bottom guy with the honking snoz is likely a Cassin’s. On beak size it goes from smallest to largest: house, purple, Cassin’s. House is only one of the three to have a convex upper mandible (beak). Both the other two species have forked tails, the house finch tail is blunt. The “purple” (see above) is only one of the three with a distinct facial pattern in immature birds. Class dismissed.

Yamhill County, Yamhill, Oregon, US
Apr 4, 2023
20 species

Eurasian Collared-Dove  X
Mourning Dove  X
Anna’s Hummingbird  1
Cooper’s Hawk  1
Red-tailed Hawk  1
Northern Flicker  1
American Kestrel  1
California Scrub-Jay  1
White-breasted Nuthatch  1
European Starling  X
Western Bluebird  2
American Robin  X
House Sparrow  X
House Finch  X
Fox Sparrow  1
Dark-eyed Junco  X
White-crowned Sparrow  X
Golden-crowned Sparrow  X
Song Sparrow  X
Spotted Towhee  X


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