This form is intended as a convenience in reporting observations of species on the Louisiana Bird Records Committee (LBRC) Review List. The LBRC recommends the use of this form or a similar format when submitting records for review (to assure that all pertinent information is accounted for). Attach additional pages as necessary. Please print or type. Attach xerox of field notes, drawings, photographs, or tape recordings, if available. Include all photos for more obscurely marked species. When completed, mail to Secretary, Louisiana Bird Records Committee, c/o Museum of Natural Science, 119 Foster Hall, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA 70803-3216.

1. English and Scientific names:  Couch’s Kingbird (Tyrannus couchii)


2. Number of individuals, sexes, ages, general plumage (e.g., 2 in alternate plumage):

One, apparent first-winter (SY) (sex unknown)

3. Locality: LOUISIANA: (parish)  Rapides Parish


Specific Locality:  off Messina Rd. (FR-273), ca. 1 mi. S of LA-28W, ca. 5 mi. W of Alexandria


4. Date(s) when observed:  20 February 2011

5. Time(s) of day when observed:  ~2:00 – 2:20 PM CST

6. Reporting observer and address:  Devin Bosler 

                                                         104 Seattle St.

                                                         Lafayette, LA 70506

7. Other observers accompanying reporter who also identified the bird(s):  Justin Bosler

8. Other observers who independently identified the bird(s):  Originally discovered by Steve Shively on 15 Feb 2011. 

9. Light conditions (position of bird in relation to shade and to direction and amount of light):


Partly cloudy sky with optimal midday sunlight.  Sun angle high and backlighting not a factor.

10. Optical equipment (type, power, condition):  Zeiss Victory FL 8x42, Kowa TSN 881 Angled 88mm scope w/ 20-60x optical zoom, Canon Powershot SD1100 IS digital camera (all equipment in excellent condition).

11. Distance to bird(s):  ca. 20-25 meters

12. Duration of observation:  ~20 min.

13. Habitat:  Open cypress-tupelo swamp and freshwater impoundment adjacent to secondary/tertiary bottomland hardwood forest along Bayou Boeuf, rural residential, wooded edges, nearby ag. lands. 


14. Behavior of bird / circumstances of observation (flying, feeding, resting; include and stress habits used in identification; relate events surrounding observation):


Actively fly-catching from tall baldcypress snags.  Responding aggressively and vocally to playback.  Giving diagnostic calls in addition to other complex phrases.


15. Description (include only what was actually seen, not what "should" have been seen; include if possible: total length/relative size compared to other familiar species, body bulk, shape, proportions, bill, eye, leg, and plumage characteristics. Stress features that separate it from similar species):


Large, yellow-bellied kingbird with olive-gray upperparts and gray head.  Throat white, olive-yellow breast blending to bright, lemon yellow belly and undertail coverts.  Dark mask on face.  Dark brown wings and tail.  Tail distinctly notched.  Relatively heavy black bill.  Absence of notching on outer primaries suggests a first-winter (SY) individual.  Retained juvenal flight feathers and juvenal (tapered) rectrices.  Body molt in juveniles complete by fall.  Dark irides.  Black tarsi and feet.


16. Voice:  Loud, monosyllabic ‘kip’ calls and drawn-out, slurred ‘queer’ and other complex phrases, particularly when agitated.

17. Similar species (include how they were eliminated by your observation):


Very similar to Tropical Kingbird (TRKI) but separated reliably by voice.  Diagnostic ‘kip’ calls eliminate TRKI (high-pitched, rapid trill).



18. Photographs or tape recordings obtained? (by whom? attached?):  Yes, digiscoped photos by Devin Bosler.  Yes, attached.

19. Previous experience with this species:  Very familiar with this species from seeing hundreds over the years in TX, plus three prior individuals in LA – 28 Jan 2006 (Red River Parish) , self-found on 20 Jan 2007 (Vermilion Parish), and one individual at Judice Park off Golden Grain Rd. (LA-342) in Ridge (Lafayette Parish).

20. Identification aids: (list books, illustrations, other birders, etc. used in identification): 


a. at time of observation:  none


b. after observation:    National Geographic Complete Birds of N.A. (Alderfer et al. 2005).

21. This description is written from: __Yes___ notes made during the observation (_____notes attached?);__Yes___notes made after the observation (date:_____); __Yes___memory.

22. Are you positive of your identification if not, explain:  Yes, very positive.

23. Signature of reporter:  Devin Bosler  Date:  8 March 2011  Time:  4:00 PM CST

24. May the LBRC have permission to display this report or
portions of this report on its webite?  Yes

If yes, may we include your name with the report?  Yes