ABA Photo Quiz

ABA Online Bird Photo Quiz 57


Bird Photo

There are many ways that we could begin to identify this bird. Shape is great, but let's begin this time by doing something different. Let's look at where this bird was photographed—what kind of habitat. This is a pretty tight photo making it hard to see what kind of tree this is much less the overall habitat, but we can see a bounty of small red fruits. And while one could see a variety of species in a fruiting tree, it makes sense to begin with those species that have a particular fondness for berries. Hoofbeats in the ABA area: think horses not zebras…fruiting tree start thinking fruit eater not seedeater.

The potential problem is that there are a variety of species that eat fruits. But let's focus on those species that we see at fruiting trees most often: American Robins, both species of waxwings, European Starling, Townsend's Solitaire, Pine Grosbeak, maybe bluebirds and other thrushes. That's a good start. Among all these species, only one has the pinkish-red uppertail coverts—Pine Grosbeak.

At this point we have a pretty good candidate, let's go through the other field marks and see how they fit. This is a pretty chunky bird (good). The tail appears somewhat short, but that seems to be mostly the angle (Pine Grosbeaks have relatively long tails, but given the angle, the tail doesn't eliminate Pine Grosbeak—and the color to the edge of the tail feathers is perfect). What about the white borders to the tertials and white tips to at least the greater coverts forming a "lower wing bar"? Those are perfect. The grayish flanks and overall color of the upperparts is also bang on. In fact, everything we see about this bird suggests Pine Grosbeak.

This male Pine Grosbeak was photographed in southwestern New Hampshire during November 2007.


The following people (listed by submission date beginning with the earliest) submitted correct answers for the December Bird Photo Quiz—Pine Grosbeak:

  1. Rick Poulin, Ottawa, Ontario
  2. John Kuenzli, Columbus, OH
  3. Patrick Belardo, Piscataway, NJ
  4. Wayne Meyer, Denison, TX
  5. Ed Harper, Sacramento, CA
  6. Greg Gillson, Hillsboro, OR
  7. Stephen Joly, Kamloops, BC
  8. Brandon Percival, Pueblo West, CO
  9. Andy Jones, Cleveland Heights, OH
  10. Kirk Zufelt, Sault ste. Marie, ON
  11. Rob Lane, Chandler, AZ
  12. Mikey Lutmerding, Salisbury, PA
  13. Richard Jeffers, Santa Clara, CA
  14. Kevin Kerr, Guelph, ON
  15. Greg Lawrence, Rochester, NY
  16. Greg Schrott, Sebring, FL
  17. Travis Cooper, San Diego, CA
  18. David Bell, Sault Ste. Marie, ON
  19. Corey Husic, Kunkletown, PA
  20. Steve McNamee, Toledo, OH
  21. Brian McAllister, Saranac Lake, NY
  22. Thomas Hall, Livermore, CO
  23. Petro Pynnönen, Helsinki, Finland
  24. Joshua Gahagan, Oakham, MA
  25. Ted Stiritz, Russellville, AR
  26. Nathan Swick, Chapel HIll, NC
  27. Robert Mottershead, Philadelphia, PA
  28. Randy Mehoves, Saint Cloud, MN
  29. Aaron Hulsey, Smiths Grove, Ky
  30. Joseph Lautenbach, Grand Rapids, MI
  31. Jim Kopitzke, Mesa AZ
  32. Jacob Drucker, NY,NY
  33. Karl Erich Mayer, Saint Clair Shores, Michigan
  34. Dave Tietjen, Owens Cross Roads, AL
  35. Jim Mountjoy, Galesburg IL
  36. Benoit Dorion, Saint-Laurent, Quebec, Canada
  37. Sean Williams, Boston, MA
  38. Alan J. Knue, Seattle, WA
  39. Michael Woodruff, Spokane, WA
  40. Rich Swartzentruber, Salem, Oregon
  41. Graham Etherington, Norwich, UK
  42. Szilard J. Daroczi, Tg.-Mures, Romania
  43. John Hammond, Durham, NC
  44. Patty McKelvey, Sheffield Village, Ohio
  45. Bill Maynard, Colorado Springs, CO
  46. Ben Loehnen, New York, NY
  47. Aaron Bilyeu, Placerville, CA
  48. Chloe Scott, Forest Knolls, CA
  49. Nell Haberman, Portland, Oregon
  50. Brad Wilkinson, Tallmadge, OH
  51. Josiah Lacelle, Camden, NY
  52. Andy Johnson, Ann Arbor, MI
  53. Mike Wasilco, Scottsville, NY
  54. Thomas Lechleitner, Fort Lupton, Colorado
  55. Brendan Collins, New Haven, VT
  56. Owen McMurtrey, Chicago, IL
  57. Avery Bartels, Nelson, BC
  58. Thomas Collins, Pittsfield,Ma.
  59. Ferenc Domoki, Winston-Salem, North Carolina
  60. Brendan Fogarty, Long Island, NY
  61. Urs Geiser, Woodridge, Illinois
  62. Matt Pike, Lacey WA
  63. Richard Garrigues, San Antonio de Belen, Heredia, Costa Rica
  64. Marcelo Brongo, Barcelona, Spain
  65. David Trently, Knoxville, TN
  66. Alan Dupuis, Cambridge, NY
  67. Stephen Seiffert, Lansdowne, Ontario, Canada
  68. Thomas Snetsinger, Brownsville, OR
  69. Terri Everett, Big Rapids, MI
  70. Su Snyder, Wooster, OH
  71. Thomas Hopkins, St. Petersburg, Florida
  72. Bret McCarty, Lakewood, Ohio
  73. Liis Veelma, Winnipeg MB
  74. Glenn Werner, Beaufort, S.C.
  75. Elaine Long, E. Brunswick, NJ
  76. Philip Kline, Tucson, AZ
  77. Andrew Deegan, Huntington, VT
  78. Steve Arlow, Rochford, Essex, England
  79. Kevin Bolton, Prospect Park N.J
  80. Luke Seitz, Falmouth, Maine
  81. Ian Davies, Medford, MA
  82. John Gluth, Brentwood, NY
  83. Steven Mitten, Belize City, Belize
  84. Marc Ribaudo, Woodbridge, VA
  85. Joshua Covill, Columbia Falls, MT
  86. Ryan Phillips, Sanat Cruz, CA
  87. Robert Furrow, Somerville, MA
  88. Evan Dalton, Kingston, MA
  89. Chris Langman, Media, PA
  90. Anthony H. Bledsoe, Pittsburgh, PA
  91. Joshua Christian, Hutchinson, MN
  92. Claude Auchu, La Pocatière, Québec
  93. Gary W. Potter, Sanger, CA
  94. Jennifer Hollenbeck, Dexter, Michigan
  95. Jon Atwood, Keene, NH
  96. David Haskell, Sewanee, TN
  97. Aaron Boone, Columbus, Ohio
  98. Sulli Gibson, Northfield, Illinois
  99. Troy Shively, Bellefontaine, oh
  100. Kevin McGann, Syracuse, NY
  101. L. Long, Chandler, AZ
  102. Steve Hampton, Davis, CA
  103. Greg Zupansic, Eugene, Oregon
  104. Brian E. Small, Los Angeles, CA
  105. Joshua Watson, Gainesville, Florida
  106. Sam Pratt, Inman, SC
  107. Kelly McKinne, Ann Arbor, Michigan
  108. Chris West, Richland Center, WI
  109. Margot Levey, North Fayston, VT
  110. Michael Retter, W Lafayette, IN
  111. Phil Chaon, Cleveland, OH
  112. Blake Mathys, Milltown, NJ
  113. George F. Cresswell, Colorado Springs, CO
  114. Barb Duncan, Jefferson City, MO
  115. Russell Cannings, Kelowna, BC
  116. Yousif Attia, Calgary, AB
  117. Sam Burckhardt, Chicago, IL
  118. Sophie Cauchon, La Prairie, QC, CAN
  119. André Pelletier, La Prairie, QC, CAN
  120. James McRacken, Charlotte, NC
  121. Bruce Deuel, Red Bluff, CA
  122. Jonathan Comeau, Williston, VT
  123. Clay Taylor, Moodus, CT
  124. Tom Dozet, Reno, NV
  125. Matt Baumann, Abq,NM
  126. dale spall, new mexico
  127. Eric Huston, Tumwater, WA
  128. Marlene Jay Cashen, Veradale, Washington
  129. Alex Dopp, Ann Arbor, MI
  130. Robert Packard, Riverside, CA
  131. Geoffrey Parks, Gainesville, FL
  132. Henry Trombley, Bristol, Vermont
  133. Kai Reed, North Egremont
  134. James McKay, Mesa, AZ
  135. Julie Cocke, Jacksonville, FL
  136. Mark Rosenstein, Cambridge, MA
  137. Mike Gurr, Toronto, Ontario
  138. Julia Marko Dunn, Newmarket, Ontario
  139. Larry Kline, Fredericksburg, VA
  140. Nick Barber, St. Louis, MO
  141. Daniel Mazerolle, Alma, NB
  142. Sarah J. Zastrow, Riverdale, MD
  143. Robert Lockett, Portland, Oregon
  144. Jim Valimont, Cheswick, PA
  145. Elaine MacPherson, Sierra Madre CA
  146. Robert Doster, Albuquerque, NM
  147. Dick Cannings, Naramata, BC
  148. Travis A. Mahan, Decatur, IL
  149. Yves Gauthier, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
  150. Susan Clark, Niantic, CT
  151. Seth Cutright, West Bend, Wisconsin
  152. Mike Fahay, West Bath, Maine
  153. Tom Lally, Chicago, IL
  154. Clive Bramham, Bergen, NORWAY
  155. kurt Pohlman, kaneohe Hi.
  156. Jack Potz, CT
  157. Alexander Watson, Austin, MN
  158. Lois Lindsay, Frankford WV
  159. Myles Falconer, Lakefield, ONTARIO
  160. Joel Mundall, Loma Linda, CA
  161. Jeremy Medina, Tucson, AZ
  162. Anil Antony, Washington, DC
  163. Brian Healy, Edwards, CO
  164. Gary Herbert, Rochester, New York
  165. Jeff Vinosky, Fairless Hills, PA
  166. Jonathan Lautenbach, Grand Rapids, MI
  167. Adrian Azpiroz, St. Louis, MO
  168. Gordon Payne, London, Ontario
  169. Ryan Dudragne, Swift Current, SK
  170. John Ivanov, Lawndale CA
  171. Tim Hodge, Roseland, VA
  172. Lee Barnes, Seattle, WA
  173. Michael Miller, Chicago, IL
  174. Matthew Schneider, Silverton, OR
  175. Eleanor Proctor, Peterborough, Ontario
  176. Craig Dodson, Clifton, CO
  177. Christopher McVoy, Yaphank, NY
  178. Cinda Crosley, Pflugerville, TX
  179. Linda Swanson, San Francisco, CA
  180. Blue Rubinstein, New York, NY
  181. Tim Hochstetler, Millersburg ohio
  182. Dominic Cormier, Halifax, N.S
  183. David Yeany II, Cumberland, MD
  184. Charles Rossa, Manassas, Va
  185. Chris Welsh, Knoxville, TN
  186. James P. Smith, Amherst, MA
  187. David Pavlik, Lansing, MI
  188. Michael Bender, Athens, GA
  189. Mike Fialkovich, Pittsburgh, PA
  190. Chris Warren, Portland, OR
  191. Adam Sabatine, Bangor, PA
  192. E.J. Raynor, Fairfield, CT
  193. Eddie Mundall, Yreka, CA
  194. Dan Walker, Canyon, Texas
  195. Rich Hoyer, Tucson, AZ

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.

Pine Grosbeak
Lucy's Warbler
White-winged Crossbill
Chestnut-backed Chickadee
Western Spindalis
American Redstart
American Robin
Bohemian Waxwing
Cassin's Finch
House Finch
Purple Finch
Black-capped Chickadee
Bullock's Oriole
Cedar Waxwing
Eastern Bluebird
Rufous-Crowned Sparrow
Rufous-backed Robin
Rufous-winged Sparrow
Tufted Titmouse
Varied Thrush


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