This plumage is held from late winter/early spring (February/March) until late summer/fall (August/September, sometimes into October/November). The upperparts, including the upperwing coverts, flight feathers, and short tail are dark brown to brownish-black with rufous scapulars and rusty-brown feather edges on the back feathers. The underparts are white with heavy brown mottling (often obscuring the white feather bases), with more extensive white mottling on the undertail coverts. The underwings are wholly dark grey-brown. The head and neck are dark brown with buff and white mottling on the chin and throat and paler brown mottling on the sides of the neck. The iris is dark, the relatively short, slender, pointed bill is black, and the legs and feet are flesh-pink to dark grey.
This plumage is held from fall (September-November) until late winter or early spring (February/March). The upperparts, including the upperwings and tail, are dark blackish-brown (often tinged with blue-grey) with extensive white mottling on the scapulars. The underparts are wholly white, extending onto the sides of the rump, except for some grey-brown flecking or mottling on the sides and flanks. The underwings are wholly dark grey-brown. The forehead, crown, ear coverts, nape, hindneck, and sides of the neck are blackish, extending onto the sides of the upper breast to form a partial collar; the lores, chin, throat, and foreneck are white and sharply contrasting, with the white wrapping up behind the ear coverts onto the sides of the nape to form a partial nuchal collar. Bare part colouration is similar to that of the breeding-plumaged adult.
This plumage is held until fall of the first year. This plumage is generally similar to that of the non-breeding adult, but black areas on the head, neck, and upperparts are browner and there is variable brownish scaling and mottling on the white areas of the throat, sides of the face, and underparts. The white mottling on the scapulars is less extensive in juvenal-plumaged birds and is often washed with brown. Bare part colouration is similar to that of adults.
Total Length: 24-25 cm
Mass: 121-269 g
Source: Nelson (1997); Sibley (2000)