Monday, October 15, 2012

Quiz #470 (2012-4-02) Solution

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Solution by Tony Leukering

[I apologize for the tardiness in getting the recent solutions posted, but I am currently working in Texas away from Internet access, so I'm getting to them as I can.]

A black waterbird with greenish legs and white in the undertail coverts leaves us just two options, Fulica americana and Gallinula galeata. Were the head raised, this one would be a no-brainer, but we cannot see the bird's bill, so must use other cues to come to the correct ID. While the bird's head looks distinctly blacker than the rest of the dark plumage, the quiz bird also sports the white side stripe and whitish vent area typical of the latter of our two options. The primary reason for running this quiz pic, though, was terminological, not, as my friend, Glen, might say, identificational. I am just a wee bit surprised that I received no answers of "Common Moorhen." Considering the fairly recent split of Common Moorhen into an Old World species (Common Moorhen) and a New World species (Common Gallinule), I am pleased with the respondents this week.

Larry Semo took this picture of a Commmon Gallinule at Wakulla Springs State Park, Wakulla Co., FL, on 27 January 2011. Larry, I still miss ya, scamp.

Incorrect species provided as answers:
American Coot - 1

Congratulations to the 17 of 18 respondents getting the quiz correct:
Pam Myers
Tyler Bell
Patty McKelvey
Kirk Huffstater
Margaret Smith
Peter Wilkinson
Donald Jones
Joshua Little
Su Snyder
Ben Coulter
Logan Kahle
Robert McNab
Nick Komar
Richard Jeffers
Bryan Guarente
Margie Joy
Joe Bens

Answer: Common Gallinule