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kjsmith

West Houston Kingbirds, 2

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All,

Now for something a bit more dicy but more interesting.  In addition to the Eastern Kingbirds, there is a tropical-type kingbird hanging out as well.  This bird appears to be either a Tropical Kingbird pr, more likely in my opinion, a Couch's Kingbird, (pale mask and bright yellow up to the throat).
Either species is seldomly found north of "The Valley" so a Houston sighting should be of note.  Any opinions and/or corrections will be most appreciated!

10,000 thanks in advance,
Kevin

KingbirdID1.jpg
KingbirdID2.jpg

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Nice bird!

This bird shows intermediate traits for many traits that can separate the Couch's and Tropical Kingbirds. For example, the tail is neither rounded nor deeply forked, and there is no extreme bill size. Unless a knowledgable expert looks at this, I think it's best left unidentified and can be reported as a Tropical/Couch's Kingbird. The plumage for both species are essentially identical.

The only exception is if you have a good description of the voice/have an audio recording. Because the calls are distinctive for both species, they can be separated purely by this factor. Tropical Kingbirds call a rapid series of high-pitched trill-like notes, while Couch's Kingbirds call slower kip-kip notes or a descending queer.

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