ABA Photo Quiz

ABA Online Bird Photo Quiz 38

Answer

Bird Photo

Bright orange, black and white usually mean that we are dealing with an oriole. Sure, American Robin, Varied Thrush, Black-headed Grosbeak have these colors, but not with the same bright orange shown by our bird. Within most of the ABA area, we aren't presented with significant challenges in identifying orioles, at least in comparison with, say, birding in Mexico. But identifying orioles is not always easy. Orioles exhibit considerable variation – age variation, sex variation, geographic variation. And, all variability can lead to a lot of headaches, particularly to the south of the US-Mexico border. So what do we do when presented with an unknown oriole?

The first clue is to study the bill, which is usually the best way to begin to identify orioles. Wouldn't you know it, we can't see the bill! Well, the coloration is helpful. The bright orange eliminates things like Scott's, Audubon's, and Orchard Oriole. Let's take a close look at the pattern of white on the wings, which is one of the few things that we can see well. Most male orioles have white edging that includes the tertials, secondaries, and primaries. On our bird, however, there is a distinct black gap to the edging of most of the secondaries. This creates a bold white triangle on the tertials and some secondary edges. This pattern is only shown by Spot-breasted Oriole. Also note that from what we can see of the greater coverts, they are uniformly black. Other similar orioles have white tips to the greater coverts that create a bold white wing bar. While this does varies by age and sex, any Altimira, Hooded, or Streak-backed Oriole that was this bright orange, would show at least some white on the greater coverts.

This Spot-breasted Oriole was photographed in Kendall, Florida in April of 2006.

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The following people (listed by submission date beginning with the earliest) submitted correct answers for the May Bird Photo Quiz—Spot-breasted Oriole:

  1. Trey McCuen, Macon, Ga
  2. Andy Bankert, Melbourne Beach, FL
  3. Lee Barnes, Seattle, WA
  4. Malkolm Boothroyd, Whitehorse Yukon
  5. Stephanie Smith, Lansing, MI
  6. Jim Hoover, Jefferson Hills, PA
  7. Mark Brown, Dalmatia, Pennsylvania
  8. crystal malick, Dalmatia, Pennsylvania
  9. David Pavlik, Lansing, Michigan
  10. TJ Hathcock, Cleveland, OK
  11. Jeff Hole, Orlando, Florida
  12. Roberto Cavalieros, Brooklyn, NY
  13. Aaron Bilyeu, Placerville, CA
  14. Johanna Wielfaert, East Lansing, MI
  15. Will Richardson, Truckee, CA
  16. Tim Avery, Salt Lake City, Utah
  17. Hope Batcheller, Petersburgh, NY
  18. Roxanne Clark, Eugene, OR
  19. Aaron Brees, Des Moines, IA
  20. Steve Hampton, Davis, CA
  21. Eva Pratt, Inman, SC
  22. Benjamin Griffith, Merrimack, NH
  23. Rob Young, Alexandria, VA
  24. Nancy Chen, Cambridge, MA
  25. Lauren Franko, Piscataway, NJ
  26. Hannah Nadel, Fresno, CA
  27. Rich Swartzentruber, Salem, Oregon
  28. Francesc Jutglar, Cardedeu, Spain
  29. Jenifer Detter, Eureka Springs Arkansas
  30. Jeff Belser, Pembroke, Ma.
  31. Matt Anthony, Bel Air, MD
  32. Erica, Bothell, Wa
  33. Philip Kline, Tucson, AZ
  34. Michael Lester, Haworth, NJ
  35. Bill Maynard, Colorado Springs, CO
  36. Trey Barron, Amarillo, TX
  37. Heather Collins, West Berlin, Vermont
  38. Dan Walker, Canyon, Texas
  39. Michael Hilchey, Albuquerque, NM
  40. Alex Harper, Miami, FL
  41. Ben Young, Salem, OR
  42. Stephen Mitten, Belize City, Belize
  43. Robert Lengacher, Tallahassee, FL
  44. Mary Austin, Grand Rapids, Michigan
  45. Kevin Kerr, Guelph, ON
  46. Douglas Robberson, Tigard, OR
  47. Nila Petty, Saint Louis, MO
  48. Neal Reilly, Schenectady, NY
  49. Jack Gibbons, Galena, IL
  50. David Worthington, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  51. Malia Wenny, Galena, Illinois
  52. George Cresswell, Colorado Springs, Colorado
  53. Jeremy Faucher, Enfield CT
  54. Stephen Joly, Kamloops, BC
  55. Chris Warren, Fort Collins, CO
  56. Jason Waanders, Washington, DC
  57. Guthelles, CT
  58. Nels F. Thompson, Owatonna, MN
  59. Noah Gaines, Flagstaff, AZ
  60. Mark Stevenson, Tucson, AZ
  61. Pam Baum, Tucson, AZ
  62. Craig Bateman, Novi, MI
  63. Alex Lin-Moore, Houston, TX
  64. Lori Fujimoto, Colorado Springs, CO
  65. Bertram E.B. BREE, Jersey Island, European Channel Isles, near France.
  66. Marcelo Brongo, Barcelona, Spain
  67. Robert Furrow, Cambridge, MA
  68. Richard Garrigues, San Antonio de Belen, Heredia, Costa Rica
  69. Bert Harris, Huntsville, AL
  70. Peter Osswald, Lindenhurst, N.Y.
  71. Rory Cameron, Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin
  72. Gerald J Brow, Cedar Michigan
  73. Alan J. Knue, Seattle, WA
  74. Matthew Kenne, Algona, Iowa
  75. Mike murphy, San Bruno, CA
  76. Angie Langevin, Sewanee, TN
  77. Joris Elst, Wuustwezel, Belgium, Europe
  78. Gary W. Potter, Sanger, California
  79. Jimmy Kirshberger, Liberty, IN
  80. Sean Prockter, Waterville, ME
  81. Adam Nisbett, Saint James, MO
  82. Ray Hasey, Yuba City, CA
  83. Matthew Daw, Raliegh NC
  84. Greg Zupansic, Eugene, Oregon
  85. Aaron Boone, Columbus, Ohio
  86. Shaun Hicks, Morrisville, PA
  87. Nikki Belmonte, Ayer, MA
  88. Tom Smith, Ayer, MA
  89. Kevin Welsh, Novi, Michigan
  90. Orrin Harvey, Tucson, AZ
  91. Marcel Gauthier, St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, QC, Canada
  92. Andrea Green, Cody, WY
  93. Wayne Meyer, Denison, TX
  94. Lauren Tompkins, Kneeland, CA
  95. Brian Ahern, Tampa, FL
  96. Yves Gauthier, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
  97. Jon R Mundall, Connell, WA
  98. Javier de Leon, Edinburg, TX
  99. Tracy McCarthey, Tempe, AZ
  100. Philip Chaon, Cleveland Ohio
  101. Ryan Dudragne, Swift Current, SK
  102. Matt Pike, Lacey WA
  103. Will Miller, Boise, ID
  104. Matthew Schneider, Silverton, OR
  105. Jerome Wood, Huntington NY
  106. Rob Fergus, Perkasie, PA
  107. Karl E. Mayer, Saint Clair Shores, Michigan
  108. Greg Gillson, Hillsboro, Oregon
  109. Brad Wilkinson, Tallmadge, Ohio
  110. Cathleen Frey, Pensacola, FL
  111. Jim Law, Canton, MI
  112. John Anderson, Reno, Nevada
  113. Micah Malueg, Hooper, Colorado
  114. Monica Berger, Brooklyn, NY
  115. Nick Anich, Ashland, WI
  116. Elaine MacPherson, Sierra Madre, CA
  117. Colin Woolley, Lee Vining, CA
  118. James McKay, Mesa, AZ
  119. Ben Coulter, Erie, PA
  120. Ethan Kistler, Newton Falls, Ohio
  121. Emily Hole, Gotha, Florida
  122. Amy Donoghue, Boca Raton, FL
  123. Hannah Hole, Gotha, Florida
  124. Josh Shramo, Dillon, CO
  125. Lois Blevins Lindsay, Frankford WV
  126. L. Craig Swanson, Benton City, WA
  127. Rachel King, Brooklyn NY
  128. Richard Green, Brooklyn NY
  129. Robert Doster, Albuquerque, NM
  130. Gary Sheeran, Trezville, SC
  131. Thomas Lechleitner, Fort Lupton, CO
  132. Harry Hooper, Tallahassee, Florida
  133. Jim Mountjoy, Galesburg IL
  134. Emily Rich, Clinton, NY
  135. Tim Hochstetler, millersburg
  136. Leta Bird, Maxeys, GA
  137. Gary Bird, Maxeys, GA
  138. matthew rueger, Cold Spring Harbor, New York
  139. Nicolas Halle, St-Nicolas,Qc,Canada
  140. Ciara Huntington, Boise, Idaho
  141. candice anderson, asheville nc
  142. John Menz, Cape Elizabeth, ME
  143. Chris Benson, Rochester, MN
  144. David Hollie, Ringgold, GA
  145. Amy Taracido, Coal Center, PA
  146. Amanda Auger, Portland, OR
  147. Jan Allen, Livingston, Texas
  148. Liis Veelma, Winnipeg, MB
  149. Blue Rubinstein, New York, NY
  150. Jill McElderry-Maxwell, Springfield, PA
  151. James P. Smith, Amherst, MA
  152. Thierry Fournet, Paris, France
  153. David Crisman, Tigard, OR
  154. Chris Wood, Portland, Oregon
  155. Bobby Walsh, Valencia, CA
  156. Kevin M. Kincaid, Indianapolis, IN
  157. Lauren Harter, Flagstaff, AZ
  158. Rob Poniatowski, Grosse Pointe Woods, MI
  159. Lindsay Swanson, Portland, OR
  160. Linda Swanson, San Francisco, CA
  161. Suzanne Feustel, Babylon, New York
  162. Sandra Lautrup, Effingham, Illinois
  163. Carrie Braden, Portage la Prairie, MB
  164. Kathryn Holm, Tamuning, GU
  165. Adrian Azpiroz, St. Louis, MO
  166. Adriana Rodriguez, St. Louis, Missouri
  167. Steven Matthews, Cold Spring Harbor, New York
  168. John Goldman, Huntington, New York
  169. Joel Mundall, Loma Linda, CA
  170. Travis A. Mahan, Decatur, Illinois
  171. Marcus Mundall, Williamsport, MD
  172. Arun Bose, Richmond, VA
  173. Jim Kopitzke, Mesa AZ
  174. Erik Mundall, Yilan, TAIWAN
  175. Pilaiporn Mundall, Yilan, TAIWAN
  176. Eddie Mundall, Klamath Falls, OR
  177. Laurina Mundall, Klamath Falls, OR

How Did You Compare?

As stated in the quiz rules, answers must consist simply of the Common or English name exactly as it appears in the ABA Checklist.

The following list shows the number of submissions for each species guessed.

Spot-breasted Oriole
177
Altamira Oriole
47
Hooded Oriole
37
Baltimore Oriole
11
Scarlet Tanager
5
Bullock's Oriole
2
Albert Towhee
1
Black-Headed Grosbeak
1
Flame-colored Tanager
1
Orchard Oriole
1
Vermilion Flycatcher
1
Western Spindalis
1
Western Tanager
1

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The photo and answer for this quiz were supplied by Chris Wood.