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Full Version: Unusual thrasher at Meteor Crater
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Anyone want to discuss the identity of this thrasher at Meteor Crater RV Park?

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Jason
Flagstaff, AZ
What is steering you away from Bendire's? Olive-brown above with small triangular spots below, warm brown flanks, pale base to the bill...
The bill seems pretty honking for BETH, and I'm having trouble seeing a pale base, but I agree with you about overall coloration and spots.

Jason
I'll go with you on the bill - that was my very first impression - and I thought about juvenile CBTH (despite the unlikely location), but the rest of it (eye color, bill curvature) fits.

If you want to walk the plank on BETH X CBTH, I'll be over here, waiting for the splash. Wink

Are you thinking Texas Curve-billed?
One reason this bird caused so much consternation is that there is a Bendire's Thrasher at the other end of the RV Park that has a very different-shaped bill with an obvious pale base, so an obvious slam-dunk BETH:

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I'd argue that this BETH has a perfectly average sized and shaped bill for the species. Comparing with the pics of the mystery thrasher gets me confused!

Jason
Jason loaned me his scope after Cameron and i drove out to look this bird over.. 60X with the bird in sun and in full shade: It is a worn Bendire' s. Bill is indeed stout. The shape of the breast and belly spots are highly apparent and consistent with this species. Pale base of lower mandible is remarkably hard to see with the bird in sun but quite evident when it is in shade.