Friday’s Feathered Friends-Western Kingbird

Copyright ©2022 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

While out for good long walk along the river recently I spied a Spring/ Summer visitor perched on a fence. The Western Kingbird. They’re one of the birds with lovely yellow in their coloring that visit here.

I think they’re so cheery with their bright yellow feathers, and gray heads.

They are in the Flycatcher family that hunts flying insects from its perch on a fence, trees, or utility wires.

They’re also famous for chasing and scolding intruders like Red-tailed Hawks, and American Kestrels.

Fun Facts gleaned from

  • The Western Kingbird’s breeding range has been spreading for the last century as an unplanned result of human activities. By planting trees and installing utility poles in open areas, people have provided hunting perches and nest sites, and by clearing forests they have created open habitats suitable for foraging.
  • Though known as birds of the West, Western Kingbirds tend to wander during fall migration. They show up along the East Coast, between Florida and Newfoundland, every autumn—but only rarely during the spring. In 1915 Western Kingbirds began spending winters in Florida, where they are now regular winter residents.
  • Western Kingbirds aggressively fend off predators and other kingbirds from their territories. The males warn off intruders with harsh buzzes or whirring wings. Both males and females snap their bills and raise their red crowns (normally hidden under gray feathers on their heads) when provoked. As the breeding season wears on, each pair defends a smaller and smaller territory. By mid-incubation time the territory includes the nest tree and little else.
  • The Western Kingbird was originally known as the Arkansas Kingbird, but scientists changed its name to acknowledge its wide range across western North America.
  • The oldest Western Kingbird on record was a male, and at least 6 years, 11 months old, when he was found in South Dakota.

We’ve been having big, strong winds lately so my sinus’ are a bit of a mess, but we’re looking at nice sunny days for the week-end here and hopefully the wind mellows out too.

I’ve been thinking about photographing the upcoming Lunar Eclipse. I won’t be able to see the entire thing from start to finish, but I’ll be able to see Totality. I’ll probably just photograph it from my yard. What about you, are you planning to watch it or photograph it?

I hope you all have a lovely week-end, and to all the Mom’s and Grandmother’s, I wish you a very Happy Mother’s Day! 🌼💗

Fuji X-T3| Fujinon 100-400mm| PS CC 23.2.2

more to come…

Western Kingbird

Copyright © 2012 Deborah M. Zajac. All Rights Reserved.

Copyright © 2012 Deborah M. Zajac.  All Rights Reserved.

My friend Dali and I went on a hike in Pinnacles National Park last week, and on the way home we drove through one of the places we have seen Golden Eagles, and we’ve heard there is a pair of Bald Eagles that hunt here too.

We saw one Golden Eagle, but no Bald Eagles on this drive, but I did see a Bobcat. He was  close to the road, and I tried so hard to get a shot, but my camera wouldn’t focus as he was in the shade under a huge Oak tree, and this lens needs a lot more light to grab focus fast. In the nano seconds it took me to get lock focus we spooked the Bobcat and he took off. I saw it though. I’ll never forget it. He was a beauty. I am hoping he’s territorial and will be in that area again. I’ll be making the trip over there again soon.

While driving I spotted this little bird. He’s a first for me too. I’m so excited to see him. Isn’t this a pretty pose? I couldn’t wait to get home and look through my National Geographic Book of Birds of North America to find out what breed he is.
I’m pretty sure this is a Western Kingbird. What do you think am I right?

I had another first on this drive…Dali spotted an American Badger and he too posed for us. I’ll be sharing a photo of it soon.

Nikon D700|Nikkor 70-300mm @300mm|f8| 1/640 sec| ISO 640| Manual Mode| Hand-held