Friday, November 27, 2015

Rare kingbird hanging around by Jefferson Playground

Yesterday I was pleasantly surprised to find a rare kingbird along River Road in Old Jefferson.  It was still there this morning. It is either a Couch's Kingbird or Tropical Kingbird, both species from Mexico or southernmost Texas.  The two species are bright yellow below and dull olive/tan above with pearly gray heads that bear the semblance of a dark mask.  They are inseparable except by voice, and this one has yet to utter anything in the presence of myself of other birders.

Although a vagrant, this bird is not unheard of here- in fact, Tropical/Couch's Kingbirds show up somewhere in the state annually, or nearly so.

As vagrants go, this individual has been relatively easy to locate- perching on wires and conspicuous bare stems near the tops of trees.  Any bird on such a perch in this location that is conspicuously yellow below will very probably be this bird.  It has been making long flights from its perches to snatch insects from the air.

The bird has been most commonly seen along the batture edge, but this morning was on the roadside wire next to the FLEA MARKET sign across from Jefferson Playground. 

Good birding,


PS- upon seeing its attraction to the FLEA MARKET sign, I immediately went home, pulled out some plywood and paint, and stuck a BUGS FOR SALE sign on my roof.  Thinking further, I added BLACK FRIDAY SALE.  Now I'm waiting for the parade of insectivores to appear in my back yard. 

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