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the "infamous" Indigo Bunting, and a boring Pacific Loon

First off, the only bird to mention during the last couple days' of my own brief birding was a June 26th northbound (basic-plumaged) Pacific Loon at La Jolla. At this rate, that bird should be arriving on the breeding grounds sometime during Summer 2019….

I was out of town for much of the "Indigo Bunting #1 debate." The plumage did indeed seem odd to me for a pure Indigo, BUT then I saw Nancy Christensen's couple fine photos from a couple or so days ago, attached to her eBird report. Perhaps I am misinterpreting what I am seeing in the photos, but it almost looks like the bird may have had some sort of traumatic event and had its entire belly section of feathers scooped out with an ice-cream scooper. And then just some those missing feathers were replaced by abnormal white feathers. It does happen sometimes that replaced feathers, following some sort of trauma, are not the correct color. Am I totally off-base? But it sure looks like a semi-crater in the bird's vent region compared to all the feathering above and to the sides of there.  If I am totally off-base on this, please let me know (gently or privately!).

–Paul Lehman,  San Diego
Source: SanDiegoRegionBirding Latest Reports