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Unusual sparrow?? Five Sriped???


Doug Elinson
 

I've hesitated to report this because it didn't seem possible, but seeing another person overcome their initial shyness regarding a marbled murrelet, I decided to get over that. A couple of weekends my wife and I were sitting on our patio drinking wine when an unexpected looking sparrow landed next to our suet feeder. It had an white throat patch, but we also notice large black mutton-chop malars, a white or whitish eyebrow and a dark cap.I was so entranced by its face that we didn't notice the chest spot or if there was a crown stripe. I checked my Sibley and Nat Geo guides and based on the malars the Five Striped most fits what we saw. I considered Bell's but not enough black in the malar I know they are not supposed to be found much north of the AZ/Mexico border. Is anyone aware of any sightings ever in this area? Sorry, no pics; it would have flown off before we could get a tp a camera.