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Eastern Kingbird Information and Photographs

Photos and Article by Charly Mann

The Eastern Kingbird is the most fearless bird I have ever encountered. This morning, May 28, 2010, my daughter and I were out taking photos of Meadowlarks when we saw a Red-Tailed Hawk fly overhead with an Eastern Kingbird attached to its back. We were stunned by this sight, and were even more amazed that it was clear that the Kingbird which was less than 1/6 the size of the hawk was fiercily pecking away at the hawk's neck. At the same time at least five other Eastern Kingbirds were chasing the hawk. The Hawk had apparently tried to steal an egg from a nearby Kingbird's nest, and these guys are highly aggressive and coordinated at driving off any potential threats no matter what the size

Eastern Kingbird up close
This is a young Eastern Kingbird that allowed me to stand very close to him to take this picture

The Eastern Kingbird measures about seven inches length and weighs around 1.4 ounces. (The Red-Tailed Hawk by contrast is usually at least two feet in length and weighs almost three pounds.)

Eastern Kingbird in Tree
Eastern Kingbird on the top of a small bush looking for flying insects to make meals out of

In Oklahoma you are likely to see the Eastern Kingbird and the much larger Scissor-Tailed Flycatcher in the same vicinity. This is because they are both members of the flycatcher family. Like other flycatchers the Eastern Kingbird likes to find a branch or fence post to sit on as they watch for flying insects, and then miraculously take off, catching their prey quickly in mid-air and then returning within thirty seconds to the same perch.

The Eastern Kingbird is a black, grey, and white bird with a usually hidden red crown. It stomach and chin are white, while its head is black. It has a grey back with white stripes, and a black tail with a bottom white band.

Eastern Kingbird backside
Back view of the elegant and fearless Eastern Kingbird in northeast Oklahoma

Eastern Kingbirds migrate to Central and South America in the Winter. They return to Oklahoma by the middle of April every year. 

 
 

Comments:

Alexander      5:11 PM Mon 10/12/2015

They are probably the most coommn Warbler. I haven't seen them at Tarrywile, but it doesn't mean they're not there. Look along the edges of the field in the mornings or late afternoons and you should see them foraging for insects.
 


Uplifting Visions
a guide to happiness, good health, and success
Charly Mann in a Hawaiian shirt
by Charly Mann

From the age of seven I have been enchanted with the idea of living happily ever after, and have made it a life quest to find that answer. I have spoken to hundreds of people – usually older and wiser than me, and read countless books and articles on the subject. In my website Uplifting Visions I share what I consider the best insights I have learned about achieving happiness in life.



Oklahoma Birds Listed by Color

Red
House Finch - male (carpodacus mexicanus)
Purple Finch - male (carpodacus purpureus)
Northern Cardinal - male (cardinalis cardinalis)
Painted Bunting - male (passerina ciris)
Summer Tanager - male (piranga rubra)

Orange
Baltimore Oriole - male (icterus galbula)
Orchard Oriole - male (icterus spurius)

Yellow
Yellow Warbler (dendroica petechia )
Baltimore Oriole - female (icterus galbula)
Orchard Oriole - female (icterus spurius)
Summer Tanager - female (piranga rubra)
Yellow Goldfinch - male (carduelis tristis)
Western Kingbird (tyrannus verticalis)
Eastern Meadowlark (sturnella magna)

Green
Malard - male (anas platyrhynchos)
Dark-eyed Junco - female (junco hyemalis)
Ruby-throated Hummingbird (archilochus colubris)
Painted Bunting - female (passerina ciris)
Green Heron (butorides virescens)

Blue
Barn Swallow (hirundo rustica)
Belted Kingfisher (ceryle alcyon)
Blue Jay (cyanocitta cristata)
Blue Grosbeak - male (guiraca caerulea)
Eastern Bluebird (sailia sialis)
Indigo Bunting - male (passerina cyanea)
Purple Martin - male (progne subis)

Grey
Great Blue Heron (ardea herodias)
Carolina Chickadee (poecile carolinensis)
Eastern Screech-Owl (otus asio)
Red-breasted Nuthatch (sitta canadensis)
Grey Catbird (dumetella carolinensis)
Ruby-crowned Kinglet (regulus calendula)
Scissor-Tailed Flycatcher (tyrannus forficatus)
White-breasted Nuthatch (sitta carolinensis)
Tufted Titmouse (baelophus bicolor)
American Robin (turdus migratorius)
Northern Mockingbird (mimus polyglottos)
Mississippi Kite (ictinia mississippiensis)
Dickcissel (spiza americana)

Black
American Crow (corvus brachyrhynchos)
Brown-headed Cowbird - male (molothrus ater)
European Starling (sturnus vulgaris)
Common Grackle (quiscalus quiscula)
Red-winged Blackbird - male (agelaius phoeniceus)
Spotted Towhee (pipilo maculatus)
Turkey Vulture (cathartes aura)

Black & White
American Bald Eagle (haliaeetus leucocephalus)
Black-billed Magpie (pica hudsonia)
Downey Woodpecker (picoides pubescens)
Red-Bellied Woodpecker (melanerpes carolinus)
Purple Martin - female (progne subis)
Eastern Kingbird (tyrannus tyrannus)
Dark-eyed Junco - male (junco hyemalis)
Loggerhead Shrike (lanius ludovicianus)

Brown
American Kestrel (falco sparverius)
Blue Grosbeak - female (guiraca caerulea)
Brown-headed Cowbird - female (molothrus ater)
Brown Thrasher (toxostoma rufum)
Common Nighthawk (chordeiles minor)
Carolina Wren (thryothorus ludovicianus)
Cedar Waxwing (bombycilla cedrorum)
Greater Roadrunner (geococcyx californianus)
Killdeer (charadrius vociferus)
Northern Bobwhite (colinus virginianus)
Red-tailed Hawk (buteo jamaicensis)
Cliff Swallow (petrochelidon pyrrhonota)
Horned Lark (eremophila alpestris)
House Finch - female (carpodacus mexicanus)
Northern Flicker (colaptes auratus)
Yellow-billed Cuckoo (coccyzus americanus)
Mourning Dove (zenaida macroura)
Malard - female (anas platyrhynchos)
Purple Finch - female (carpodacus purpureus)
House Sparrow (passer domesticus)
Indigo Bunting - female (passerina cyanea)
Red-winged Blackbird - female (agelaius phoeniceus)
Spotted Sandpiper (actitis macularia)
Upland Sandpiper (bartramia longicauda)
Northern Cardinal - female (cardinalis cardinalis)
Eastern Screech-Owl (otus asio)
Yellow Goldfinch - female (carduelis tristis)
Canada Goose (branta canadensis)

Various
Wild Birds of Northeast OK

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