Verification of Unusual Sight Record
For Utah

Rec. # 2004-42

Common name:

Scarlet Tanager

Scientific name: Piranga olivacea
Date: 11/13/04
Time: 8:00 AM and 5:00 PM
Length of time observed: 45 sec. and 8 min.
Number: 2 (AM) and 1 (PM)
Location: Daystar Adventist Academy, Castle Valley, Utah
County: Grand
Latilong: 109-23 / 38-38
Elevation: 4800 ft
Distance to bird: 15 ft
Optical equipment: Wind River 8 x 42 binoculars
Weather: Partly cloudy
Light Conditions: Daylight
Detailed description of bird: Olive green head, back and rump. The green on the head extends below the eye. Underparts all yellow with a little white just below wing. Very dark (almost black) wings and tail. Light horizontal lines on wings where feathers come together. Dark eye with yellow eye ring. Notched tail, not very long. Wingtips extend just past the green rump. Sparrow type light bill. Dark legs. (see photo)
Song or call & method of delivery: None
Behavior: Came to water 3 times in AM. Eating among sunseeds and cracked corn on ground under feeder in PM. Stayed within 1 ft of feeder pole.
Didn't scratch, hopped a few times .
Habitat: Chased a spotted towhee away. Remained after all other birds left.
Came from cottonwood tree to water and feeder.
Similar species and how
were they eliminated:
Western Tanager- No wingbars, head back and rump same color.
Summer Tanager- head back and rump green not mustard brown, bill not large.
Hypatic Tanager- No gray cheep patch, no gray wash on flanks
Previous experience with
this & similar species:
Familiar with western tanager
References consulted: National Geographic Birds of North America, Sibleys
Description from: Notes taken at time of sighting
Observer: Tom Harris
Observer's address: HC 64 Box 2201, Castle Valley, Utah 84532
Observer's e-mail address:
Other observers who independently identified this bird: Luther and Waneta Harris
Date prepared: 11/14/04    (General Public)
Additional material: Photo
Additional comments: Smaller than Towhee, larger than house sparrow Comparable size to White-crowned Sparrow just huskier.