LOUISIANA BIRD RECORDS COMMITTEE

REPORT FORM

     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: Tropical Kingbird

2. Number of individuals, sexes, ages, general plumage (e.g., 2 in alternate plumage): 1

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3. Locality: LOUISIANA: (parish) Plaquemines

Specific Locality:

4. Date(s) when observed:†† February 12, 2011

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5. Time(s) of day when observed:†† Mid-morning

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6. Reporting observer and address:†† Paul Conover, Lafayette LA

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7. Other observers accompanying reporter who also identified the bird(s):Mac Myers

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8. Other observers who independently identified the bird(s):I think Glenn Ousset had IDíed a Tropical Kingbird at the site last year, and if Iím correct, Phillip Wallace had found it/another this year.Both sightings involved calling birds.

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

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10. Optical equipment (type, power, condition):Zeiss 10s

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11. Distance to bird(s):Perhaps 20-30 yards at closest.

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12. Duration of observation:off and on, wandering bird, maybe 10 minutes total over a span of an hour or so.

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13. Habitat:Neighborhood in an area surrounded by open lands with canals, semi-wetlands with willow woods, wooded golf course.

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14. Behavior of bird / circumstances of observation (flying, feeding, resting; include and stress habits used in identification; relate events surrounding observation):Foraging over wide area, using wires, trellises, trees as perches.Bird tended to return to a sycamore tree within the neighborhood.

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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):Kingbird with bright yellow underparts with exception of white throat and chin.In some angles, in some light, greenish/grayish suffusion visible in yellow of upper breast.Head light-medium gray, slightly darker auriculars bordered below by white of throat.Eye dark.Bill black, broadly triangular, seemed long and stout. Culmen curved downward, lower edge of mandible looked straight-- giving the bill the appearance or illusion of a slight decurve over its length.Back grayish olive, contrasting slightly with gray of head.Wings dusky, flight feathers and coverts edged in paler whitish.Tail color similar to wings with less pale edging.I didnít note any notch to tail. Outer rectrices showed a thin white outer edge, but nowhere near as distinct as the white outer web of Western. Legs black.

 

Primaries of perched bird seemed emarginated, and pictures seem to show emarginations less extreme than on Western, but I canít say that with confidence.†††††††

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16. Voice:Mac may have heard it call, I donít recall hearing it.

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17. Similar species (include how they were eliminated by your observation):I think austral migrants can be ruled out by breast and throat color/pattern, as can Cassinís and Western.Western also has a blacker tail with broad white edge to outer rectrix.This comes down to Tropical, Couchís, or hybrid.Bill suggests Tropical, but thatís subjective.Iím basing my ID primarily on fact that others had heard a Tropical calling here, and this bird looks good for Tropical.

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18. Photographs or tape recordings obtained? (by whom? attached?):Yes.

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19. Previous experience with this species: A little in AZ and TX, not extensive and not recent.I have seen a few Couchís in LA.

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

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a. at time of observation:

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b. after observation:

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21. This description is written from memory.

22. Are you positive of your identification:This is a difficult pair to ID.Although some birders nonchalantly toss out IDs of ďTropicalĒ kingbirds based on certain field marks, Iíve looked at enough specimens to know this is a hard call even in hand.I am pretty sure of the ID based in the fact that a calling Tropical has frequented this site.

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23. Date: 3/5/2011

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