40

I believe this is a bar-headed goose. Source Source The Bar-headed Goose has a white head with distinctive black bars or stripes on its head, black extending down the front and back of the neck, leaving a white stripe down the sides of the neck, the upper parts and breast are medium grey, flanks are grey turning brown on rear flanks, vent and tail ...


16

Cornell Labs has several good resources: Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Exploring and Conserving Nature. The Sibley app also has bird sounds you can compare to (as do several other mobile apps): Sibley Birds of North America There is supposed to be an app coming out which can identify automatically, but I have not yet found a copy of it to download. It's ...


13

I agree with berry120 that contacting local experts, or even hobbyists will most likely be the easiest way to go. They should have a much better knowledge of local species than you would be able to find in (online) literature. Coming across plants or animals in the outdoors it's always interesting to identify them, but not always easy. In my experience, it'...


12

The osprey does seem the most likely option. There are only a handful of breeding pairs in North Wales, but they are in your area so it's credible. The wingspan of a small common buzzard starts at around 110cm and a large osprey can reach 170cm, so although they are normally of similar size the wingspan differential is possible. And the osprey has the white ...


11

It looks like a Starling (Sturnus vulgaris), which are quite common over here in the UK. https://www.rspb.org.uk/birds-and-wildlife/bird-and-wildlife-guides/bird-a-z/s/starling/ Starlings love suet. Search for "Starling murmuration" and go to videos, in the UK & Ireland this is a common site in the winter - Try https://www.wired.com/2011/11/starling-...


11

According to this article, (How to Tell a Raven From a Crow): Ravens often travel in pairs, while crows are seen in larger groups. Also, watch the bird’s tail as it flies overhead. The crow’s tail feathers are basically the same length, so when the bird spreads its tail, it opens like a fan. Ravens, however, have longer middle feathers in their tails, so ...


10

Of the three possibles I came up with from your description (wagtail, oystercatcher and lapwing), wagtail was ruled out by its size, and you would have seen an oystercatcher's beak as they are pretty bright (and oystercatchers don't have a swooping flight) - the only one that matches correctly is the lapwing. It is black and white and has very squared off ...


10

American Robin, Source European Robin Source They are from different families of birds, The American robin (Turdus migratorius) is a migratory songbird of the thrush family. It is named after the European robin3 because of its reddish-orange breast, though the two species are not closely related, with the European robin belonging to the Old World ...


9

I suspect this mostly is a result of need, and antipathy. First of all I think your premise that humans can't identify individual animals within a breed or species is false. People who spend significant time with animals like pet owners, farmers, and naturalists can differentiate between "their" animals and new animals much easier than people who aren't ...


9

The bird you are listening to is a northern mocking bird. I am not sure why it’s making the calls in the middle of the night. Mockingbirds in general are known for their intelligence and their ability to learn new calls. That’s why you’ll mostly hear it making a lot of different types of calls. EDIT: After some research I found the following reasons why ...


8

I support the accepted answer but wanted to add an potentially helpful anecdote. When I joined the Marine Corps as a young man some 20 years ago - the first thing they did was give us a uniform and shave our heads. For the first several weeks after that, I struggled to identify one individual from another - as hair is a key element that we as humans use in ...


7

It's certainly possible in North Wales, one was reported near Mold a couple of weeks ago and they're quite mobile at this time of year. I don't think you can rule out common buzzard for several reasons: The colouring of buzzards (buteo buteo) is highly variable. They can easily look as black-and-white as an osprey. One living near me was entirely white ...


7

According to this page (cache here) it's a Chukar partridge (Alectoris chukar): The Chukar (Alectoris chukar) is a Eurasian upland game bird in the pheasant family Phasianidae of the order Galliformes, gallinaceous birds. Its native range in Asia from Pakistan and Kashmir, India and Afghanistan. Wikipedia also has an article about it: This partridge ...


7

Swifts tend to fly higher than swallow and house martins, but the biggest giveaway is the noise they make. From almost the same page you linked you can listen to the audio file. A swift call is a screech, even a scream. You can quite often hear them before you see them (they tend to occur in decent numbers when the noise is almost non-stop) Swallows and ...


6

In that area, Hen Harriers are reasonably common. They feed on the grouse on the moorland to the south. By Andreas Trepte (Own work) [CC BY-SA 2.5 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.5)], via Wikimedia Commons It's distinctivley a Raptor, with a noticable larger wingspan than the buzzard. They circle at times, much like Buzzards. I've personally ...


6

Sorry to ruin your enchantment, but from the photos, it looks like a Muscovy duck: a species native to Central and South America and Mexico, but considered invasive in the United States.* They are often acquired as pets, then released (or escape) and can quickly overrun an area. They are indicated in the transmission of disease, destruction of property, ...


6

If you're after a certain, one-off dead set answer then you might want to try looking up departments / experts in this area in academia and then send them a polite email saying you'd be very grateful of their help. I'm sure many would be willing to answer since as experts in their field it'd probably take 2 seconds to work out (and many people I know in ...


6

As the Sherlock Holmes would say, How often have I said to you that when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth? If you look through the list of owls in Idaho, or the list of owls in North America you will notice that the only white owl is the Snowy Owl. It seems far more likely that you saw a snowy ...


6

One good way to figure out what a bird is is by going step by step with its characteristics. The Cornell Lab of Ornithology has good web pages for this for each species. Note: It is not just the look of a bird that matters. Read the behavior section, as well. https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Coopers_Hawk/id# https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/...


5

Another two reasons The first is that humans vary much more than crows do - in behavior and in color (clothing) so they are easier to tell apart. The second is that crows (and birds generally) have much more to gain from distinguishing between different humans than humans have from distinguishing crows. Humans are both a source of resources/benefits for ...


5

To answer the snake part of it, looking at some information on different websites and your vague description about color (dark brown to all shade till black), I can take a few guesses. It can be either of the list below: Northern or Southern Rubber Boa (Charina bottae or Charina umbratica) Western Yellow-bellied Racer (Coluber constrictor mormon) One of the ...


5

Song sparrow? https://youtu.be/wdaE7eaayKM I am a western birder but that's what it sounds like to me. Out here they are usually found in wetter areas or in riparian habitat.


5

The biggest difference between ravens and crows is that ravens average 2 feet long with a 4 ft wingspan, while crows are about 1.5 ft long with a wingspan of 3 feet. These numbers can vary a bit regionally and by individual, but for a casual birder, the size difference along is enough to differentiate them. The ravens also have a distinctly deeper call, ...


5

The only possible confusion species would be barn owl. Yellow Pine is near the limit of barn owl range, and barn owl is very noticeably slimmer (not more plump) than snowy owl, so I think you're right in calling it a snowy. Most snowy owls that head into the lower 48 states in the winter are 1st-winter birds, which are more heavily marked than most adults, ...


5

That definitely looks like a Cooper's hawk. First consider this picture of a Cooper's hawk that looks remarkable similar. Image Source The other thing to consider is that in your picture and this one is that they both have dark and light bands in the tail feathers and Peregrine falcons do not have that, at least to the same extent. Picture of a ...


5

I highly recommend the Pocket Naturalist Guides from Waterford Press. I have no affiliation with the company, and I don't purchase directly from their website. I'm recommending them because we use them for birding and learning about nature both in the backyard, and in our travels. I think they easily meet your criteria. They're folded to give you a good ...


5

Size: The great spotted is greater in size than the lesser spotted. Perhaps that goes without saying but the difference is quite significant. The great spotted is about the size of a blackbird. The lesser spotted is about the size of a sparrow. Red: Female lessers have a white cap. Male lessers have a red cap, juvenile greats have a red cap but they're ...


4

That is a Chukar partridge. For more information I would suggest the wikipedia article.


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