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Parasitic Jaeger (Stercorarius parasiticus), Lake Havasu SP - Pittsburgh Point, Mohave County

This Parasitic Jaeger was photographed by Chris McCreedy on 12 September 2021

Casual in Arizona. If accepted by the ABC this would represent the 21st state record; most are from along the lower Colorado River.

Identification of juvenile jaegers is complex. Parasitic is the only species to have such a relatively small-headed appearance and muted barring, especially on the upper and undertail coverts. The bill is intermediate in size between Long-tailed and Pomarine. The underwing pattern of Parasitic Jaeger is variable; this individual shows a hint of a "double flash" caused by pale bases to the underprimary coverts similar to that shown by Pomarine Jaeger. Parasitic Jaegers can vary in this characteristic from a two-toned pattern like Pomarine to a strongly barred pattern like Long-tailed. Most importantly, on this bird the two pointed central tail feathers extend moderately beyond the rest of the tail, whereas this extension is rounded and very short in Pomarine and longer in Long-tailed.

Better photos by Ken and Gary Rosenberg are at https://ebird.org/atlasny/checklist/S94561806


12 September 2021, photo by Chris McCreedy

All photos are copyrighted© by photographer

Added on 13 October 2021

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