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Couch's Kingbird

Tyrannus couchii ORDER: PASSERIFORMES FAMILY: TYRANNIDAE

IUCN Conservation Status: Least Concern

A large, brightly colored flycatcher of southern Texas and Mexico, the Couch's Kingbird is very similar to the more widespread Tropical Kingbird. The two were considered the same species for nearly one hundred years, but they can be separated by voice and very subtle morphological characters.

At a GlanceHelp

Measurements
Both Sexes
Length
7.9–9.4 in
20–24 cm
Weight
1.4 oz
40 g
Other Names
  • Tyran de Couch (French)
  • Tirano silbador (Spanish)

Cool Facts

  • Song is the best field character to distinguish Couch's Kingbird from Tropical Kingbird. The shallower notch in the Couch's tail and the greener back are difficult to detect. In the hand, the slightly larger Couch's has a longer wing, but a shorter bill than the Tropical Kingbird.

Habitat


Open Woodland

Lives in thorn forest, brushy clearings in tropical forest, abandoned agricultural fields overgrown with shrubs, riparian areas, and suburbs.

Food


Insects

Flying insects, some fruit.

Nesting

Nesting Facts
Egg Description
Cream or rich buff with dark spots.
Condition at Hatching
Helpless and with sparse buff down.
Nest Description

Untidy bowl of twigs or bark strips, lined with plant down or fine rootlets. Placed in islotated tree or tree at edge of forest.

Nest Placement

Tree

Behavior


Flycatching

Aerial hawking from elevated perch.

Conservation

status via IUCN

Least Concern

Couch's Kingbird increased its range, and populations grew significantly between 1966 and 2015, according to the North American Breeding Bird Survey. Partners in Flight estimates a global breeding population of 2 million with 19% living in the U.S. (Texas), and 69% in Mexico. The species rates a 10 out of 20 on the Continental Concern Score. Couch's Kingbird is not on the 2016 State of North America's Birds' Watch List.

Credits

Range Map Help

Couch
View dynamic map of eBird sightings

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