Monday, July 18, 2011

Hybrid BlackXEastern Phoebe: a second juvenile

While watching for the Black, Eastern and hybrid offspring Phoebes I have been following in Canon City,CO I spotted a second hybrid juvenile. It was easy to tell that this was another juvenile as it's appearance is substantially different from the first hybrid juvenile. The top and middle pics are of the second hybrid juvenile while the third is one of the pics I took of the first hybrid juvenile I found a week ago.
This second hybrid juvenile looks mostly like an Eastern Phoebe with a whitish throat contrasting with dark head, smudgy sides (though there seems to be some rather black portions and smudgy areas 'leak' across breast (similar to Black Phoebe but not completely dark across breast and Eastern Phoebes in juvenal plumage often have this). The tips of the rectrices are quite sharp, a characteristic of juvenal plumage for Black Phoebes and possibly for Eastern also (Birds of North America online not very clear on Eastern. It lacks both in the photos, and in my observation through my spotting scope, yellow wash on belly and underparts that is prominent in juvenal plumage for Eastern Phoebes. Other plumage characteristics not seen in photos or when I watched the bird in my spotting scope. Though this bird is clearly different in appearance than the first hybrid, it is in my opinion intermediate in plumage between Black and Eastern Phoebes. SeEtta