Bird Weekly – Photo Challenge – Birds with Stripes, Spots or Freckles

The feature image is a Limpkin tucked into cover in some grass. I still managed to get a good look and pretty good photo.

Week #51 brings us to birds with stripes, spots or freckles. I thought of this challenge because I was a little freckle faced kid. I have a lot of freckles on my face and all over my body, although they are starting to blend as more of age spots the older I get.

Many birds are easy to identify because they have a certain shaped head like an Oystercatcher or there is only one like the Osprey. Other birds, like Sandpipers and Warblers are difficult to identify. We rely on their stripes, spots or freckles. Often these identifiers are on the wing bars or on the chest. Learning to identify your bird species takes time and a really good field guide. I carry by Sibley’s Field Guide everywhere. I have one for Eastern North America for our home range and one for Western North America that I take with me on trips out west. They are written by David Allen Sibley who is an American Ornithologist and these guides are available on Amazon. For my overseas birding friends, I’d love to know what your favorite field guides are and who authors them.


Ovenbird feeding and hiding in the forest. They have a freckled chest and yellow & black stripe over the top of their head.

The Ovenbird in the thick of cover has wonderful freckles on the chest and yellow and black stripe over the top of their head.

Northern Bobwhite

Northern Bobwhite perched in a large pine tree in Georgia has beautiful spots all over and a distinctive white stripe across the eye on the head.

The Northern Bobwhite aka Quail has spots throughout the body with that very distinctive stripe across the face and neck.

Gambel’s Quail

Gambel's Quail foraging on the ground in Las Vegas.

Gambel’s Quail male has beautiful stripping around the head and neck. Females have a less distinct striping around the eye. Both the male and female have white stripes at the back of their wings.

Carolina Wrens

Two curious juvenile Carolina Wrens perched on driftwood.  They have a buffed colored breast, brown head, back and tail feathers.  A white stripe over the eye.

These two curious juvenile Carolina Wrens were starting to get their rusty brown colors in. Their eye stripes were distinct and their spots were beginning to come in on their tail feathers.

Pileated Woodpecker

Pileated Woodpecker

The Pileated Woodpecker is an easy bird to identify. The largest woodpecker in North America sporting that awesome black stripe through his eye and down the back of his head. That large tufted patch of red on the head stands out like a sore thumb.

Red-shouldered Hawk

Red-tailed hawk perched on a fence.

Red-shouldered Hawks have freckles all over their bodies. Maybe this is why I love them so much. They remind me of me, but I don’t have yellow feet.


Speckled chicken heading to the hen house because I didn't have food.

This speckled chicken was not having anything to do with me because I had nothing to feed her. She was giving me the cold shoulder by showing me her backside and clucking with disgust.


A mated pair of Osprey high in a Cypress Tree with a next built on top.

A pair of Osprey nesting in an old Cypress Tree. Osprey are easily recognized with their black stripe across their eyes. These birds can be misidentified as an eagle or hawk with the naked eye, but once you get your binoculars on them, there is no doubt what they are.

Spotted Sandpiper

Spotted sandpiper along the shore in Jacksonville, Florida.

The Spotted Sandpiper has a few spots as a non-breeding adult like this one, but in their breeding plumage, they are very spotted all over. I’ve never seen a breeding adult as they breed from the central United States north into Canada.

Semipalmated Sandpiper

Semipalmated Sandpiper foraging along the shoreline at Little Talbot Island State Park.

This Semipalmated Sandpiper was “spotted” during migration on his way to Canada and Alaska to the breeding grounds. The breeding plumage was really coming in with lots of colorful spots and brown freckling on the chest.

Wilson’s Plover

Male Wilson's Plover trying to steer people and predators away from their nest on Little Talbot Island State Park.

This Wilson’s Plover with 4 other pairs had nests at the south end of Little Talbot Island. They sport the very distinctive black striped collar.

Bonaparte’s Gull

Bonaparte's Gull floating in a pond.  They are distinguished from other gulls by their ear spot.

Bonaparte’s Gull has the very noticeable ear spot on the back of their head.

Next time…Week #52 – Birds with long tail feathers. (6/18/21)

Bird Weekly Challenge Badge.

57 Comments on “Bird Weekly – Photo Challenge – Birds with Stripes, Spots or Freckles

      • That is awesome! I will see it in a bit. I had a busy weekend with the Etsy store so now I’m getting to blog posts. I will make time to do PInk even if it is only a couple of pics. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Terri! I’m excited for you to go birding…Holy Bird Pics, Batman! LOL! Can’t wait to see them and wish I was going with you. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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  5. Yes indeed, warblers, raptors, several kinds of waders, some of the owlets, and lots more are best told apart by their spots and stripes. You have a lovely collection there of more birds which I’ve never seen.

    This week I have the grey Francolin, strongly streaked, and harder to spot today than it used to be.


    Liked by 1 person

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    • Thank so much Lisa! Keep trying. We’ve been chasing the Red-cockaded Woodpecker for a couple of years. We actually saw several trees marked in the Osceola Forest on our way to the VA hospital on Wednesday where they have nests but didn’t see any. Saw a Red-headed woodpecker but didn’t get a pic.

      Liked by 1 person

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  11. I found your post (on your site) and posted one. I don’t know if I’m not getting email because it’s getting buried or because gmail is overloaded, but it’s aggravating. Meanwhile, I have a gallery up. I have a lot of new pictures. I pulled one card out of my camera that I thought was just today’s pictures — and there were more than 450 pictures on it. Oops. I had to divide them into different folders. I have another camera from which I haven’t removed the card in a while. I’m almost afraid to look!


    Liked by 1 person

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  17. I just wanted to write and find out how you are doing! I just got my husband out of his sling, so he is doing better and the pollen has dropped off, so I am almost breathing normally. I hope you are feeling better or at least beginning to round the corner to feeling better! Miss you!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ah…thanks Marilyn. Stitches are out but he had to suture it because it wasn’t quite ready. 3-4 weeks before I can start to think about walking. I’m taking it easy as much as I can. The Etsy store is busy and a friend of mine & I are working on product development. I’m tutoring my granddaughter on facetime so that is cutting into my blog time tremendously. One more month of that and I should be back to some normal communication. Otherwise, I’m doing okay. Elsa came through yesterday. A tornado touched down 4 miles from my house. Scary stuff. I had to get in my safe place so I wasn’t rushed if it took a turn this way. I stayed put for about 10 minutes. I miss you too and I’m glad your hubby is doing better. Breathing is better here too but the pollen has been gone for about a month now. You should start feeling like a million bucks! LOL! 🙂


      • We always try to hurry our recovery and it NEVER works. Garry’s attempt to hurry his shoulder wound up with a shoulder that’s better, but it should have been MUCH better, but he didn’t wait long enough and didn’t follow orders about not doing those exercises until he was fully healed. I made a mess of other surgery by going back to work before I was healed and to this day, I don’t know why I didn’t just say NO, but I didn’t and it was a heavy price to pay.

        We had a small tornado (how big do they really need to be?) pop up just a mile away. It turned the other way. We all went into the sort-of basement and hoped for the best. We don’t get a lot of tornadoes around here, but they do happen in the summer sometimes. Never one of those huge ones, but even a small one can take out a house and a car. But we also don’t have any proper protection from tornadoes, not even a real basement.

        Be patient. It will pay off long-term. Feet, knees, shoulders — all the moving parts — are very hard to heal. My chest never healed following heart surgery. The bones healed, but the cartilage never knit and there’s absolutely nothing they can do to make it knit. It either does it by itself or it doesn’t. So if it’s healing, LET it heal. Be good. Be patient. It really IS worth it!

        Liked by 1 person

      • I’m being as patient as I can and each day, I am able to spend more time at the computer without pain. The boot that I have is the worst pain (literally) of everything. It hits the side of my foot where the incision is just right and I can’t keep it on for me than a couple of hours a day. Should be longer but I can’t handle it and I’m not taking any more pain pills.

        Your tornado was closer than mine which was too close. We don’t get the big ones either like we did when I was growing up in Texas. So they just drop from the sky and stir up some trouble and go back. This one was on the ground for miles and for at least 20-30 minutes. Crazy stuff!
        I hope your heart finds a way to heal itself. I can’t even imagine what you are going through. 🙂


      • It’s not painful anymore unless I do something that pulls the bones apart, but it seriously limits what I CAN do. I have learned to live with it and I can push it back into place if I need to, but realizing that it’s never going to heal is just one of those things. That’s why I try to urge everyone to let things heal. Who knew how much of your body is connected to your breast bone?

        I don’t think the boot per se helps healing. I think it’s protective, so if you’re not on your feet, it probably doesn’t matter. Check that with the doctor — and also, maybe you can get a less painful boot? My granddaughter has had 17 surgeries on her foot. She’s a real expert on boots!


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