[CT Birds] Scarlet Tanager / Summer Tanager- Female in Niantic on 04/26 ?

Patrick psmithct at sbcglobal.net
Sun Apr 27 12:37:12 EDT 2014

I'm posting a day late, since I had to spend the morning here with my Computer, iphone apps; iBird and BirdTunes and Guidebooks all working at once to confirm that it was a Female Scarlet Tanager. However there are two facts of the sighting that have thrown me into a little confusion.

First the sighting:  I was waiting in my car outside the little Libety Bank, near the Holly hedges about 11:00 am.  Then no more than 8 feet away, was this rather nondescript, though elegant bird quite captivated by its reflection in the neighboring car's side rearview mirror.  It kept looking and looking, but not showing aggression.  Then it would hop up on the top of the mirror and call/sing. The size, color and bill shape pointed me toward buntings and tanagers, but the subtle throat stripes were subtler to me than a bunting. 

Does the mirror action infer a male?  Strange that it was so close and unthreatened by me?  Now the call is the most perplexing because the only call anywhere like it in length and volume was the chatter call (AZ) of the Summer Tanager on BirdTunes.  A Summer Tanager? The bill was sort of chunky.  I did not see any red in the breast, but I'm sort of color blind anyway.  Haven't posted on ebird since there is some confusion.

Patrick Smith
Waterford, CT

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