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Now That's a Strange Field Mark

posted by Tim Avery at
on Wednesday, February 2, 2011 

A few days ago I peered out the window at the feeders and noticed a Lesser Goldfinch feeding on the ground beneath a packed thistle feeder. I was surprised to see what looked like a white stripe of feathers up the middle of the crown. I went into my office and set up to take some pictures. After I snapped one I thought the stripe looked odd, and then I realized why. It wasn't feathers, it was bird crap! This goldfinch was feeding right beneath a flock of others feeding, and one had apparently dropped a bomb that hit its target... Check out the pictures:

Click Images to View Larger

And this is the reason you NEVER eat where you poop! The little guy eventually took a place at the feeder so he was no longer a target for his buddies!

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Blogger Birding is Fun! said...

Funny stuff! I saw that happen once on a Yellow-breasted Chat.

February 2, 2011 at 12:29 PM  
Anonymous Jerry Liguori said...

That's gross...hah. In "Hawks From Every Angle" I mention on page 109 that vultures sometimes have white blotches on the upperside since they roost communally. Tim, good post, that could easily be confused with leucistic feathers.

February 4, 2011 at 12:04 PM  
Blogger Tim Avery said...

Thanks Jerry. That was my initial impression, and that's why I looked closer. I have seen gulls, and ducks with other birds excrement on them, but this was a first for a songbird.

Robert, I would call that the white-splotched chat!

February 4, 2011 at 9:15 PM  

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