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Finally, in  what has been a lacklustre fall, I dragged my ass into the field to look for birds. A previously reported Lark Sparrow had been seen at Hammonassett State Park, CT so since that was still a nemesis bird in the state, I thought I would spend some time there and give it a go. A great spot for birding, I figured it would be a great place to spend a nice few hours in the field on a glorious fall morning.

Arriving at the spot, I was told it had been seen earlier feeding with some sparrows. I patiently waited and saw nothing. After everyone had disappeared, it suddenly appeared, feeding in the leaf litter in front of me. Unfortunately it was flushed by a cyclist and so good views were brief.

Quite a dapper bird!

Quite a dapper bird!

After a while the bird flew out of some conifers, giving it’s “tink-tink” call and flew across the campground. I followed it and soon relocated it feeding out on the grass. I went all Seal Team Six on it and belly crawled close..unfortunately it remained in the shade for over half an hour. At this point, just as I was going to need a chiropractor for my neck,  it shuffled into some sunlight for a few seconds and I managed a few shots.

Definitely a crippler as sparrows go!

Difficult to age in late fall since juvs moult mostly on the summer grounds and thus lose most of their tell-tale streaky plumage. Since moult in this species is quite complex between geographic populations, it means that fall birds are generally not easy to age on plumage and best aged by the shape of their tail feathers. These looked pointed in other images which would make it a HY (first-year).

Difficult to age in late fall since juvs moult mostly on the summer grounds and thus lose most of their tell-tale streaky plumage. Since moult in this species is quite complex between geographic populations, it means that fall birds are generally not easy to age on plumage and best aged by the shape of their tail feathers. These looked pointed in other images which would make it a HY (first-year).

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