Slate-colored Junco
12 Nov 2017, 7:54 PM,
#1
Slate-colored Junco
This guy showed up in the yard a few times today. It appears to be what is described in Sibley's as a Slate-colored variant. I saw it a few times last winter (assuming it is the same bird).

Any thoughts?

   
Reply
13 Nov 2017, 7:51 AM,
#2
RE: Slate-colored Junco
I've learned that I don't know much about Juncos, but it looks like the white wingbar variant to me. It looks like it's hood is darker than it's back, so maybe a variant of a cismontanus/Cassiar/Cassiar-like/Canadian Rocky Mountain bird. Neat!
Tom
Reply
13 Nov 2017, 9:00 AM,
#3
RE: Slate-colored Junco
(13 Nov 2017, 7:51 AM)tshedwall Wrote: I've learned that I don't know much about Juncos, but it looks like the white wingbar variant to me. It looks like it's hood is darker than it's back, so maybe a variant of a cismontanus/Cassiar/Cassiar-like/Canadian Rocky Mountain bird. Neat!
Tom

Thanks Tom. You're correct, the hood is a bit darker than the back. I've got a couple pictures that show that.

joe
Reply
27 Nov 2017, 7:55 PM,
#4
RE: Slate-colored Junco
Can we revisit Joe's Junco? I thought it was too dark for a white-winged, but looking at Christian's pictures, I'm entirely unsure of that now. Does Joe's bird show the pale tertial edging that Anne referred to as being a White-winged mark?
Reply
28 Nov 2017, 9:24 AM,
#5
RE: Slate-colored Junco
I agree with others that this is a Slate-colored with abnormal wing-bars. The color here looks typical of a Slate-colored, but it may not be the best to judge that feature because the photo is so under exposed. I lightened it up on my computer and the shade of gray changed quite a bit.

The real clincher for me is the small, pale bill. White-wingeds always have honking bills that often have an almost silvery sheen to them.

The first bird you encounter in my junco album that is labeled as a White-winged is not the best to start off with since it's on the dark end of the spectrum, approaching the colors of a normal Slate-colored. A few reputable folks thought it was an abnormal Slate-colored when I first posted it years ago. In the field it was a big guy, noticeably larger than the adjacent Gray-headeds, the bill was huge, and the amount of white in the tail was appropriate.

Tertial edge coloring is highly variable, and is complicated by age. Most adult male White-wingeds have at least a spot of white at the tip of each tertial. Some have an extreme amount, like this freaky bird from CO last winter (https://www.flickr.com/photos/christian_...8703416141). Adult Slate-coloreds have gray-edged tertials (as do Gray-headed, Red-backed). This "silvery" gray color can be quite bright on some individuals, but I have never seen a Slate-colored with any pure white on the tertials. It would certainly not surprise me if one of the "wing-barred" Slate-coloreds had some, though, since the genes that give the greater coverts white tips may be the same that control tertial color. Just assuming.
Reply
28 Nov 2017, 10:03 PM,
#6
RE: Slate-colored Junco
Thanks for your detailed response Christian. That was very helpful.
Reply


Possibly Related Threads...
Thread Author Replies Views Last Post
  Junco Fun tshedwall 0 298 20 Feb 2018, 9:38 AM
Last Post: tshedwall
  Leucistic Junco tshedwall 0 383 26 Oct 2017, 9:45 PM
Last Post: tshedwall
  FOS Oregon Junco gbotello 0 335 1 Oct 2017, 8:04 AM
Last Post: gbotello
  Slate-colored Junco: Yard 10/29/16 gbotello 0 675 30 Oct 2016, 8:50 AM
Last Post: gbotello
  Yard: FOS Oregon Junco 10/9/16 gbotello 0 804 10 Oct 2016, 12:40 PM
Last Post: gbotello
  "Red-eyed" Junco vocbirder 2 1,584 5 Aug 2016, 8:27 PM
Last Post: HollyPK
  Yellow-eyed Junco Photos Nathan Renn 10 5,296 29 Mar 2016, 8:55 AM
Last Post: jawilder
  White-tailed Junco jawilder 0 707 6 Mar 2016, 8:54 AM
Last Post: jawilder
  Brown-cowned Junco jawilder 1 1,106 18 Jan 2016, 2:21 PM
Last Post: jawilder
  Yard Birds: Slate Colored junco gbotello 1 1,158 7 Jan 2016, 10:03 PM
Last Post: Phyllis Kegley

Forum Jump: