Friday, July 30, 2010
Young birds can be confusing both in the way they look and the way they sound. It makes it much easier to identify them when an adult is nearby, but the lone youngster can sometimes be confusing. I have often chased after a bird sound which I don't recognze just to find that it is a common species, but a young individual. When I see these juveniles, they can be harder to ID or just as obvious as the adults, depending on the species. The young Cliff Swallow (San Simeon Creek, 7/4) and Pygmy Nuthatch (Cambria, 7/4) above are still obvious, but the turkey (Poly Canyon, 7/16) and the White-crowned Sparrow (Morro Rock, 6/20) below might demand a second look before identifying them. It is a fun challenge for me to ID the calls of such young birds.