Terry Wright writes: "For those non-scientists reading these posts, I hope
this back and forth discussion does not seem like bickering...."
Bickering? Hardly. This discussion is fascinating and exciting. Many thanks
to all the experts who are contributing to it!
----- Original Message -----
From: "Terry Wright" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Thursday, November 08, 2007 10:46 PM
Subject: Re: [VTBIRD] Flank patch caveat for ARLO identification
> Thanks for the great pics. This is quite an interesting twist on the
> discussion of field marks. Of course, the Chin Strap on your bird pegs
> it as a Pacific. I spoke with one of the folks who has seen the VT/NY
> bird and they describe a very detailed flank patch very similar in shape
> to that shown in Sibley and National Geo. Also, they have noted the
> angular forehead and relatively flat shape to the top of the head. There
> was a lot of activity on the lake today looking for this bird, with one
> interesting candidate being followed. A local research vessel was even
> employed, but I do not know the outcome and hope it gets posted here.
> For those non-scientists reading these posts, I hope this back and forth
> discussion does not seem like bickering. But, scholarly challenge and
> debate is one of the cornerstones of science which has made our country so
> very strong in the many sciences. Researchers do not take these
> challenges personally, but a vigorous debate is welcomed to come the the
> 'truth' of matters which are often not black and white.
> Good birding,
> Steve Mirick wrote:
>> In July 2004, we had a cooperative Pacific Loon spend a couple of days
>> along the NH seacoast. Although it didn't show white flanks that often,
>> it clearly did show them at times as shown below. For this reason, I
>> think that extreme caution should be used to base an ID of Arctic Loon on
>> this field mark alone.
>> Steve Mirick
>> Bradford, MA