Mistaken Identity – Birds and Ancestors

Brown Thrasher (Toxostoma rufum) by Judd Patterson

Brown Thrasher (Toxostoma rufum) by Judd Patterson

Here is an interesting email notice:

SK?????@?.com via listserv.usf.edu
3:13 PM (4 minutes ago) to BRDBRAIN

Mental error, Brown Thrasher not Brown Creeper. S???? Tampa, Fl

To subscribe, unsubscribe or view archives of the brdbrain listserv list, please visit us on the web at:
http://listserv.usf.edu/archives/brdbrain.html

Brown Creeper (Certhia americana) ©USFWS

I belong to the BRDBRAIN reports that come out about bird sitings here in Florida. The University of Florida has several “listserv list.” Birds being one of them. When someone spots especially a bird that is uncommon to the area, they report it. Then, as true birders, especially those trying to build their “Life List” of birds, they scurry off to see it and add it to their Lists. Most of you know what I am referring to.

So, in this case, S???? had reported the wrong bird and was correcting his error. We have all had to “eat crow” over something we have said. At least I have.

In the last article, Where are you from? – Correction, one of my blogging friends made a reply and I answered them. Aussiebirder has a great blog and you should drop by there to see it. I answered them but would like to use this blog to further explain how things happen with bird lists and ancestry lists.

Their remark: “From my findings some of these genealogy companies, especially the ones using DNA typings do not contribute any practical links to a specific family with any accuracy or even traceable evidence.” and here is my reply, “It was not really ancestry’s fault as much as those who blindly connect people to their trees without much research. My problem came before I received my DNA results. This might just be a good topic for a post. I am finding quite a bit from my results. Humm. A post topic. Hope the “only birders” won’t mind. :)”

I just now bolded, the part I would like to address. Just as the person above misidentified the wrong bird, those doing their genealogy, do the same thing. Ancestry and other like services [My Heritage, Family Tree, Geni, etc.], provide “Hints” for a possible fact to be applied to the Family tree they are working on.

We, birders and genealogist, are so eager to add another “notch” to our list, that we overlook some of the other facts. Did the bird have red or black eyes, stripes or streaks, etc? Did the person that you are trying to add live long enough to produce offspring? [That is a favorite mistake that I see. They are like 7 years old when their child is born. WHOA!!

Broken Limb/Branch off of Tree

I had to “chop that branch” off my tree because I had mistakenly not checked all the facts. My new DNA results are actually helping me find some of my great nieces and nephews from parts of our family that we had lost track of. [By the way, I am trying to see if that tree might produce another limb, just as interesting as the other.

Brown Booby (Sula leucogaster) ©WikiC [At least it’s brown! :) ]

As you study the birds more and more and have practical experience in the field, you are less apt to make mistakes. Are you ever going to be right 100% of the time? Dream on!

Am I ever going to remove another limb from my tree, or at least a “twig”? Most likely.

What we do is keep doing our best and do not be afraid to admit that a mistake was made. Not admitting a mistake is worse than making a mistake and not admitting it. Especially, not trying to correct our mistakes.

*

Our paster is always telling us to, “tell the truth, tell the truth, tell the truth.”

Therefore, confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another so that you may be healed. The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much. (James 5:16 NASB)

Where Are You From? II – Correction

Where Are You From? – II

Where Are You From? – I

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