2 exotic/escapee birds
In the interest of documenting escapee species:
On Sunday, June 17 and briefly on Monday June 18, I had an unusual goldfinch/siskin type bird at our nyger-seed feeders. Could not tell what it was, a weird lesser goldfinch or something else. Posted some fuzzy photos to birdingsandiego listserv and Millie Basden pointed me in the right direction. It is a yellow-bellied siskin, from Colombia and environs [at first I thought it was a yellow-rumped siskin but during the Monday return I was able to see that the critical characteristics pointed towards yellow-bellied].
The bird was unusual in that most of the back feathers were white, though some black feathers were present. Still molting in? or, as Gjon Hazard suggested, that birds in captivity can show some phenotypic variability.
Also, 2 months ago a birding friend I know from the Hornblower trips sent me a photo of an adult male red-headed bunting, seen on private property in a garden in east San Diego for one day. These used to be very popular in the pet trade, but I don’t know how many are around in cages now, since their population has dropped so dramatically in the wild.
Stan Walens, San Diego
June 19, 2018; 7:30 a.m.
Source: SanDiegoRegionBirding Latest Reports