I’ve been lucky this season in stumbling on Ash-throated Flycatcher (ATFL) fledglings-to-be. I must have mis-estimated the hatching date of this box; normally, I wouldn’t be checking it with the kids so close to fledging. The nestmates of these two must have fledged earlier in the day; these guys were out of the box themselves when I peeked in 2 hours later.
Here’s a real “Where’s Waldo” challenge at a different ATFL box. As I walked up to a nest box, I saw this dude launch itself into the world. Can you find the newly fledged ATFL in the pinyon? (Hint—click on the photo to get a larger version and look behind a small dead area at the end of a branch in the approximate center of the photo.)
Give up? Below is the same photo, cropped and with a circle around the fledgling. (Again, click on the photo for a larger version.) In this photo, it’s facing to the right. (One adult was calling from the right; another, from the left.) What looks like a white line on its cheek is actually the white gape flange.
Here’s another, with the same fledgling facing to the left (inside the ellipse). In this one, you can see the white gape flanges a bit more clearly (in the larger version).