Fwd: [Tweeters] Gonzaga Campus Swift Question

Joshua Glant josh.n.glant at gmail.com
Sun Apr 12 13:00:53 PDT 2015


You're right about the counting part. I feel uneasy when I'm not sure about ID, from either a bad or fast view. For example, when I saw a kettle of Hawks above the Costa Rican rainforest, I counted Broad-winged Hawk only on my "Hypothetical" list, even though there were likely individuals of that species in the kettle. Also, I counted a gray fork-tailed tyrannid on a wire in Costa Rica as a hypothetical Scissor-tailed Flycatcher, based on probability at that location and seasonal abundance only.

I am quite certain that they were swifts; the thin- and crescent-winged silhouette is distinctive to me. However, I did not get a photo, and I did not distinguish the white throat. But I counted them as White-throated, based on probability, location and seasonal abundance.

Fortunately, today at 11:10 AM I saw a swift swooping under High Bridge in Spokane, in a place where they are known to nest, and there were 12 birds reported there this week. I saw the large size and long wings, lighter-colored back, and maybe even a glimpse of the white sides! So I'm sure of THAT one as being a White-throated, at least!

Thanks, Joshua Glant

Mercer Island, WA

Josh.n.glant at gmail.com



> On Apr 12, 2015, at 11:48 AM, Kevin Black <kevblack787 at gmail.com> wrote:

>

> My rule is that if you're not 99% sure on identification I don't count it. It sounds like you didn't see enough of the Swift to call it a White-Throated Swift then you would ID it as Swift Species. Was your first encounter with your swifts through the sunroof while driving? Did you see it's white throat? Did you get a picture? Swallows can fly like swifts at times-though totally different sillohoutte.

>

>> On Sat, Apr 11, 2015 at 5:51 PM, Joshua Glant <josh.n.glant at gmail.com> wrote:

>> Good afternoon,

>>

>> Today I took a nice walk along the Spokane River, starting in Riverfront Park. Walking along the riverside path, near the SW corner of the Gonzaga campus, I spotted two swifts over the next rise. It was only a three-second flash, but I saw the birds' thin, crescent-shaped wings flapping rapidly as they circled back and out of sight.

>>

>> I sprinted ahead to try and find them again, startling three marmots along the river. I stopped to take a look at the marmots (my first sighting ever!) and the swifts were long gone when I started up again a minute later.

>>

>> Question is, can I call them White-throateds with certainty? I did see your report of them on the campus from Thursday. I only was able to tell that they were swifts, but not identify them to species!

>>

>> That makes me two for two of brief White-throated Swift sightings, both of them in pairs! My first encounter came only this past Monday, looking through the sunroof from the passenger seat as we left Frenchman Coulee.

>>

>> Thanks, Joshua Glant

>>

>> Mercer Island, WA

>>

>> Josh.n.glant at gmail.com

>>

>>

>>

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>

>

> --

> Kevin Black

> Richland, WA

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