Living Bird Magazine
Vermilion FlycatcherPyrocephalus rubinus
- ORDER: Passeriformes
- FAMILY: Tyrannidae
A spectacular and distinctive flycatcher, the bright red Vermilion Flycatcher inhabits riparian areas and scrub in the southwestern United States and southward. It perches conspicuously, making periodic flights to nab insect prey.More ID Info
- Mosquero Cardenal (Spanish)
- Moucherolle vermillon (French)
- Cool Facts
- The breeding male Vermilion Flycatcher spends about 90 percent of the day perched.
- Twelve subspecies of Vermilion Flycatcher are recognized, including a race with a dark morph that ranges from western Peru to northern Chile. Both male and female of this morph are dark all over, with some males having a few red feathers on the head, and some females having a pinkish wash under the tail. About half of the Vermilion Flycatchers in Lima, Peru are the dark morph, but the proportion decreases as one goes further southward.
- The male Vermilion Flycatcher often seeks to initiate copulation by delivering a butterfly or other showy insect to the female.
- The oldest recorded Vermillion Flycatcher was a male, and at least 4 years, 6 months old when he was shot in Mexico in 1972, the same country where he had been banded.