Bird Identification 101

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Table of Contents
Introduction
Topography of a Bird

Constant Features

Plumage Variations

ID by Shape
ID by Color
ID by Location
ID by Specific Features

The Bill

Cone-shaped

Dagger-shaped

Curved

Hooked

Needle-like

Spatulate

Quiz on Bill Shapes

The Head

Eyering

Crown

Lores

Supercillium

Ear Patch (auricular)

Quiz on the Head

ID by Field Mark
ID by Behavior
ID by Gestalt
ID by Nests
ID by Ear
 

Recommended ID Books

Topography of a Bird

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The body of a bird can be thought of as a three dimensional surface with different regions that can be defined. In most cases these regions correspond to distinct groups of feathers that are found on every bird, making this a very useful tool for describing any bird in the world. The basic breakdown of feather groups and parts of a bird are shown below, and will be discussed in detail in this tutorial.

Next: Constant Features

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