Verification of Unusual
Rec. # 2005-25
|Scientific name:||Phalaropus fulicaria|
|Length of time observed:||10 minutes|
|Age:||1 CY juvenile|
|Location:||Antelope Island Causeway between MM 5 and 6|
|Distance to bird:||150 feet|
|Optical equipment:||Nikon 20-60x80 Earth & Sky Scope, Nikon Monarch 10x42 Binoculars|
|Weather:||Clear and Hot!|
|Light Conditions:||Sunny, direct overhead light.|
|Description: Size of bird:||7 - 9" ? Size typical of phalarope sp.|
|(Description:) Basic Shape:||Shaped like a large shorebird/sandpiper type bird|
|(Description:) Overall Pattern:||buffy/orange wash, black checked back and wings, with a dark crown, and dark mark behind eye|
|(Description:) Bill Type:||short, heavy bill, like a peep bill|
Field Marks and
While scanning a large flock of Phalarope, at least 1,000 birds, I came across a
bird that stood out because of its orangish/buffy coloration. I put my scope on
the bird, and immediately
noticed it was not a Red-necked or Wilson's Phalarope due to the coloration. The orangish color covered the back, head and breast. The back was checkered, black and buffy/orange along with the wings. The head had a dark eye, with a large black teardrop behind the eye, and a dark crown. The bird had short darker legs. The bird also had a short thick bill, unlike the other phalarope species. The bird was shaped like a large sandpiper, fairly round stocky body, and stood rather balanced, not upright.
|Song or call & method of delivery:||none|
|Behavior:||Actively feeding and moving about with a large flock 1,000+ Red-necked and Wilson's Phalarope.|
|Habitat:||Shallow water and mud flats on the edge of the Great Salt Lake.|
were they eliminated:
Both Wilson's and Red-necked Phalarope are similair in shape but differ in
plumage. Wilson's Phalarope in all plumages, lacks the overall orange color and
heavy marking on back and
wings. Red-necked Phalarope is more striped, than checked on the back, and again lacks the overall orange wash. Both of these species also have longer, thinner bills.
Buff-breasted Sandpiper is a similair size, but completely different in body type, being almost completely a light buff color, with long yellow legs, walking upright, with a tiny thin bill.
Juvenile Ruff (although very unlikely) would be larger with long yellow/orange legs, and have lighter markings on the head markings.
Red Knot would be much darker and completely red/orange on the head and below. I have never seen a Red Knot this lightly colored. Also the red on grey pattern is very distincitve, and hard to mistake.
I can't think of any other species that would be similair enough, Pectoral and Sharp-tailed Sandpiper may be similair in coloration, but are heavily marked/patterned in all plumages/ages.
this & similar species:
|I have seen all the similair species, minus Ruff, and spent considerable time shore birding and viewing them.|
|References consulted:||The SIBLEY Guide to Birds|
|Description from:||From memory|
|Observer's address:||1754 Garfield Avenue, Salt Lake City, Utah 84108|
|Observer's e-mail address:||email@example.com|
|Other observers who independently identified this bird:|