This amazing bird landed ahead of me as I walked along the wetland trail yesterday. My MO is to snap away and determine what it is later. But I was so curious about this bird. I have never seen a bird like this that I remember. Maybe I am more observant than I have been in the past, noticing what I have not paid attention to before.
This phainopepla , or northern phainopepla is the most northern representative of the mainly tropical Central American family Ptiliogonatidae, the silky flycatchers. Its name is from the Greek phain pepla meaning “shining robe” in reference to the male’s plumage. (thank you Wikipedia)
He was so fascinating, as he would fly off, then flutter around and back down in the same, or nearly same, location.
According to audubon.org:
“In the desert southwest, Phainopeplas and mistletoe rely on each other. Phainopeplas feed heavily on berries of this parasitic plant; after the berries pass through the bird’s digestive tract, the seeds often stick to branches of mesquite or other trees, where they can sprout new mistletoe clumps.”
I decided to post this for Cee’s “Birds of all kinds” challenge. This is certainly a unique bird and I feel blessed to be able to spend a few moments of time with him out in nature yesterday.
“Birds are a miracle because they prove to us there is a finer, simpler state of being which we may strive to attain.”
~ Douglas Coupland