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Chris,

Leaving likelihood out of the equation, Swainson's tend to appear rather
slight and thin, rather than "compact". Also, medium-light adults will have
a very white face, which should be fairly striking at that distance. Adding
to this, the Swainson's is a bird of wide-open spaces, and the likelihood of
seeing one decreases the further east you are. In this area this time of
year, it would most likely be a light morph Rough-legged Hawk until proven
otherwise. A more detailed description of the account would be very helpful.

"Enjoy every sandwich." -  W.  Zevon

Dana C. Rohleder, O.D.
Port Kent, NY
<[log in to unmask]>

----- Original Message -----
From: "Chris Rimmer" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Thursday, November 07, 2002 2:14 PM
Subject: possible Swainson's Hawk in Shelburne


> I hesitate to post this, but it sounds reasonably convincing.  Anne August
of
> Wake Robin in Shelburne just called me and reported what she believes was
a
> Swainson's Hawk on Bostwick Rd at the foot of the Wake Robin driveway 2
days
> ago (5 Nov).  She described a "compact" Buteo with distinctly
chocolate-brown
> chest and pure whitish underparts below.  I'm no expert on raptor ID, but
it
> sure sounds like a light morph adult Swainson's.  It's too bad she didn't
call
> sooner, but some Burlington area birders might want to take a look.
>
> Good luck,
>
> Chris
>
> Chris Rimmer
> Vermont Institute of Natural Science
> 27023 Church Hill Road
> Woodstock, VT 05091
> 802-457-2779 ext 120
> <www.vinsweb.org>