Greetings Bob and Maeve, Bob, thanks for drawing my attention to "First Year Male" plumage. From what I now observe and from the recordings I have heard my strong inclination is to go with "First Year Male Red Crossbill". [Thanks also Maeve for the bird song link.] As a single record it means little but if other sightings are forthcoming it will stand! Thanks also for responding both of you. Cheers, Roy The Gables at East Mountain, Rutland, Vermont Speaking the same language. Red Crossbills have been showing up in many states recently, including Wisconsin, Ohio and even central California. It's confounding people because it doesn't seem like a winter irruption. Also, the many different subspecies have many different sounds. You can find a wide variety of songs and flight notes by going to www.xeno-canto.org and typing Red Crossbill in the search box. Many of the songs are definitely sweet! Maeve Kim Jericho Center In a message dated 9/25/2012 8:39:00 A.M. Eastern Daylight Time, [log in to unmask] writes: Check p. 530 of Sibley for plumage of 1st year male. Bob Yunick Schenectady, NY -----Original Message----- From: Roy Pilcher <[log in to unmask]> To: VTBIRD <[log in to unmask]> Sent: Mon, Sep 24, 2012 8:50 pm Subject: [VTBIRD] Red-crossbill? If female red crossbills do not sing then this tentative ID does not get out of the starting blocks! I was drawn to this bird by its song while it was perched on a snag with the morning sun coming from behind it at about 45 degrees. The squat shape of the bird with a deep notched tail and the lemonny/yellow color said "red crossbill female". The bird took of spiraling heavenward in a half circle in order to make the upper canopy of a grove of white pines. The song was sweet, without the jarring and guttural sounds that the Smithsonian recordings generally indicate for red crossbill although one of the recordings is somewhat sweeter. The flight call was a series of "tsinks" to my ears! Any thoughts would be helpful. I have not entered "it" on the report of birds seen today at Kent Pond. Kent Pond, Rutland, US-VT Sep 24, 2012 8:10 AM - 10:05 AM Protocol: Traveling 0.5 mile(s) 22 species Canada Goose 68 On the pond. Mallard 10 Blue-winged Teal 6 Common Loon 2 Spotted Sandpiper 1 Belted Kingfisher 1 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker 1 Downy Woodpecker 1 Hairy Woodpecker 1 Northern Flicker (Yellow-shafted) 2 Pileated Woodpecker 1 Eastern Phoebe 1 Blue Jay 42 Mostly moving south in small flocks, largest was 15. American Crow 5 Common Raven 2 Black-capped Chickadee 5 Tufted Titmouse 1 Gray Catbird 2 Yellow-rumped Warbler (Myrtle) 1 Song Sparrow 4 White-throated Sparrow 3 American Goldfinch 4 Cheers, Roy Pilcher The Gables at East Mountain, Rutland, Vermont Speaking the same language.