White-collared Seedeater (Sporophila torqueola morelleti) - 3 February 2011, Chan Chich Lodge, Orange Walk District, Belize.

The light was favorable after a brief rain shower and I was pleased to get this photo of an adult male White-collared (Morellet's) Seedeater from the porch of our cabin.

We did not notice them in the field, but a few wispy hair-like filoplumes can be seen projecting from the nape in this photo. These feathers often protrude on the nape where birds cannot preen, especially in species with soft contour feathers on the nape. For more information on protruding filoplumes and speculation as to its function see:

G. A. Clark Jr. and de Cruz, J. B. 1989. Functional Interpretation of Protruding Filoplumes in Oscines. Condor 91:962-965. [PDF]

Digiscoped with Panasonic DMC-LZ5 | Nikon FieldScope III | 30XWA | hand-held (no adapter)
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