Hybrid Couch’s/Tropical Kingbird x Scissor-tailed Flycatcher plus a bonus Bullock’s Oriole!
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This hybrid is continuing since November 14th when it was discovered here by Jason Lambert. For eBird purposes, this bird is currently being entered as Couch’s x Scissor-tailed as that is the only option available, however there is no way to rule out a Tropical x Scissor-tailed combo without genetic sampling (which may hopefully happen since it seems some fecal samples were obtained). Regardless of Couch’s or Tropical, this hybrid is certainly one of those species mixed with Scissor-tailed Flycatcher. The plumage features and overall structure are a perfect blend of those species:
It is quite large for a kingbird, with a large and blocky head, and broad shoulders reminiscent of Couch’s/Tropical. The overall body shape is slightly more narrow that Couch’s/Tropical. The bill is large and thick-based, but intermediate in size between Couch’s/Tropical and Scissor-tailed. The base of the black bill is pinkish. The tail is long and broadly-forked, with older (worn, brown) outer tail feathers and fresh (crisp, black) inner tail feathers. The outer edge of the tail feathers are grayish-white. The tail itself is broad-based similar to the structure of Couch’s/Tropical. The head is light-gray similar to Scissor-tailed, with a white throat and breast. The lower body is bright yellow. The center of the back is a mix of light-gray and light-green. The wing feathers are brown and the coverts are broadly-edged in white. The broad shape to the tips of the outer primaries suggest this is not an adult male, but more likely a female or immature. There is a small patch of very faint pinkish wash at the birds ‘shoulders’ similar to Scissor-tailed. We heard it vocalize one time and it made a sputtering twitter call similar to those of Couch’s/Tropical and Scissor-tailed, but we did not manage to get an audio recording.
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