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I'm searching for the right metaphor here...Say there are two kinds of  
pancakes, strawberry or banana. Does that mean there's no such thing as  
a "pancake"? I think that disk on my breakfast plate can be both a  
strawberry pancake, and just a pancake. So yes, Northern Flicker is an  
umbrella term, but I view it as a real thing, too. Any yellow-shafted,  
red-shafted, or hybrid of the two can be correctly called a Northern  
Flicker (the scientifically accepted species name). Previously we've talked  
about why we might want to use a more specific name when possible. We  
should keep in mind our human labels may oversimplify the complicated but  
intriguing relationships among groups of similar organisms.

This is getting too existential, please pass the maple syrup.

-- Scott Schwenk
South Burlington

On Apr 17, 2010 10:54am, Ruth Stewart <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> Thanks Scott, So if I am reading this correctly, there really is no such  
> bird as a Northern Flicker. The term serves as an 'umbrella' for the  
> yellow (E) and red shafted (W). So I guess if one were in an area where  
> these species overlap, and a flicker is only heard, then N. Flicker would  
> come into play.





> So for the VTebird checklist we should be using Yellow-shafted Flicker  
> and Slate-colored Junco.





> Hope that helps everyone including me and I, sort of?? have it right!





> Ruth Stewart


> e dorset











> > Date: Fri, 16 Apr 2010 02:39:10 +0000


> > From: [log in to unmask]


> > Subject: Re: [VTBIRD] ebird question - flickers and juncos


> > To: [log in to unmask]


> >


> > So the Yellow-shafted Flicker is the yellow-winged form of the Northern


> > Flicker (well, yellow when viewed from the underside due to yellow  
> feather


> > shafts). The western version or Red-shafted Flicker, also a subspecies  
> of


> > Northern Flicker, has reddish under the wings that's visible in flight.


> >


> > The junco issue is somewhat more complicated, but the vast majority in


> > Vermont are dark gray above (somewhat browner in females) with white


> > bellies - hence, "Slate-colored Juncos." They are now considered to be  
> the


> > same species (collectively, Dark-eyed Juncos) as western forms such


> > as "Oregon Junco," which are noticeably different in appearance. (By the


> > way, the name Dark-eyed Junco distinguishes this group from what is


> > regarded as truly a separate species, the Yellow-eyed Junco of extreme  
> SW


> > US and Mexico.)


> >


> > In the past, both Yellow-shafted Flicker and Dark-eyed Junco have been


> > considered full species, and who knows, it might happen again. Or some  
> day


> > distributions may change and other forms might start appearing in  
> Vermont.


> > So recording these subspecies, even if not currently considered unique


> > species, could have some value for posterity as well as expressing a bit


> > more of the genetic diversity of our bird life than the conglomerated


> > species names might imply.


> >


> > -- Scott Schwenk


> > S. Burlington


> >


> > On Apr 15, 2010 8:58pm, Ruth Stewart [log in to unmask]> wrote:


> > > Thanks, Allan -


> >


> >


> >


> >


> >


> > > So if you do see the flicker, how do you tell the difference between a


> > > Northern and Yellow-shafted?


> >


> >


> >


> >


> >


> > > What about the Junco issue?


> >


> >


> >


> >


> >


> > > ruth


> >


> >


> >


> >


> >


> >


> >


> >


> >


> >


> >


> > > > Date: Wed, 14 Apr 2010 18:14:24 -0400


> >


> >


> > > > From: [log in to unmask]


> >


> >


> > > > Subject: Re: [VTBIRD] ebird question


> >


> >


> > > > To: [log in to unmask]


> >


> >


> > > >


> >


> >


> > > > Hi Ruth,


> >


> >


> > > >


> >


> >


> > > > If you know with certainty that the bird you saw represented a


> >


> >


> > > > particular subspecies, eBird allows you to enter that "form". So, if


> >


> >


> > > > you knew that your flicker was "yellow-shafted", then you could  
> enter


> >


> >


> > > > that in eBird. But, if you heard a flicker calling and couldn't say  
> for


> >


> >


> > > > sure what subspecies it was, then Northern Flicker would be the  
> choice.


> >


> >


> > > > Obviously in VT where we (typically) only have one subspecies of


> >


> >


> > > > flicker, you could enter "yellow-shafted" every time and no one  
> would


> >


> >


> > > > know the difference. However, if we are interested in documenting  
> the


> >


> >


> > > > distribution of particular subspecies...case in point, the "Common  
> Teal"


> >


> >


> > > > (currently Green-winged Teal subspecies) in the Connecticut R.  
> Valley,


> >


> >


> > > > this information becomes valuable. Bottom line...if you are certain,


> >


> >


> > > > enter subspecies. If unsure, enter the more general species name.


> >


> >


> > > >


> >


> >


> > > > Allan


> >


> >


> > > >


> >


> >


> > > > Ruth Stewart wrote:


> >


> >


> > > > > Kent, perhaps you can answer this question which is one several  
> of us


> > > are asking..


> >


> >


> > > > >


> >


> >


> > > > >


> >


> >


> > > > >


> >


> >


> > > > > On the VTebird species list, do we check


> >


> >


> > > > >


> >


> >


> > > > >


> >


> >


> > > > >


> >


> >


> > > > > Dark eyed Junco OR Slate-colored Junco


> >


> >


> > > > >


> >


> >


> > > > >


> >


> >


> > > > >


> >


> >


> > > > > Northern Flicker OR Yellow-shafted Flicker??


> >


> >


> > > > >


> >


> >


> > > > >


> >


> >


> > > > >


> >


> >


> > > > >


> >


> >


> > > > >


> >


> >


> > > > > Thanks


> >


> >


> > > > >


> >


> >


> > > > > ruth stewart


> >


> >


> > > > >


> >


> >


> > > > > e dorset


> >


> >


> > > > >


> >


> >


> > > > > _________________________________________________________________


> >


> >


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> >


> > > > >


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> >


> > > > >


> >


> >


> > > >


> >


> >


> > > > --


> >


> >


> > > >


> >


> >


> > > > *******************************************************************


> >


> >


> > > > Allan M. Strong


> >


> >


> > > > University of Vermont


> >


> >


> > > > The Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources


> >


> >


> > > > 347 Aiken Center


> >


> >


> > > > Burlington, VT 05405


> >


> >


> > > > 802-656-2910


> >


> >


> > > > *******************************************************************


> >


> >


> >


> >


> >


> > > _________________________________________________________________


> >


> >


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