December 8, 2010 — Odd birds

There’s not much to photograph this time of year, but fortune has brought a subject to my door.  I was watching the birds at our feeder one day and I noticed an aberrant female house sparrow.  I set up the camera, but didn’t catch her until about a week later.  Apparently, she lives in my neighborhood.

From Fall 2010

She has white wing coverts, and that’s not right.

A typical female appears below.

From Fall 2010

She’s basic brown.

Aberrant birds are not that uncommon.  I’ve seen several over the years.  They appear in just about every issue of Birds and Blooms.  It’s hard to photograph these backyard birds on cloudy days.  There just isn’t enough light, and they move too fast.  I did some experiments with high ISO.  It seemed to work for birds that are fairly close.  If you don’t crop the  image too much, you don’t see the pixel noise in the background.  The lighting is nice and even too.

From Fall 2010

Tufted titmouse.

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