The Phainopepla, whose name means "silky robe", is part of the silky flycatcher group, a tropical group of birds named because of the silky appearence of their feathers. This bird is the northernmost (and the only in North America) of the group. They feed primarily on mistletoe berries and insects. Mistletoe plants are distributed among trees by seeds in the Phainopepla's droppings.
General: 6.25 inches in length.
Male: Entirely (shiny) black plumage. Dark red eye. Long tail. Small, thin bill. White wing patches visible in flight. Spicky crest feathers. Female: Smaller with all dark gray plumage.
Juvenile: Similar to female.
Desert landscape, hot areas with single tall trees containing mistletoe, and open woodlands.
2-4 speckled pale green eggs with a 14 day incubation period. Fledging occurs 19-20 days after hatching. A simple and shallow nest is usually built in a mistletoe-bearing desert tree.
- Del Cerro Neighborhood
- Yaqui Well, Anza Borrego State Park
- Agua Caliente Campground, Anza Borrego State Park
- Santee Lakes, Santee
- Mission Trails Regional Park, San Diego
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