Bird ID, please - SE Vermont

Hmm. Other than the red (which I’m sure I would’ve seen, as I did get a pretty good look at the two birds), the rose-breasted grossbeak kinda does look like them.

How about a female Black Backed Woodpecker?

You may also want to examine List of Birds in Vermont.

That woodpecker has a distinct resemblance, too. Thanks!

I was going to go through all the shorebirds I could find, just based on your mallard-head-and-feathers-out-the-back description.

Now I see you’re leaning towards a woodpecker or grosbeak. Let’s end this foolishness now;
Behold, the Rufous-sided Towhee

Eh? Eh?

What do I win?
Source: Roger Tory Peterson: Eastern Birds

Nope, neither of the two birds I saw had any red at all.

Check out that site again. The female rose-breasted grosbeak does not have any red. Neither does the male in non-breeding plumage; however, breeding plumage is from Mar to Aug. Possibly a female rose-breasted?