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Vermilion Flycatcher

A debate — by state!

What’s the reddest bird in North America? In the East, the Scarlet Tanager or maybe the Summer Tanager. But neither is seen nearly as often as the Northern Cardinal. In the Southwest, another candidate pops out like a bright red flare on the tip of a branch: the Vermilion Flycatcher. This dashing flycatcher evokes sparkling names, from the arid Southwest to South America: Mosquero Cardinal — or “cardinal-colored fly-killer” — and Brasita de Fuego or “little red-hot coal of fire.” Be sure to watch this amazing video.

Full Transcript

Transcript: 

BirdNote®

Vermilion Flycatcher

Written by Bob Sundstrom

This is BirdNote.
What’s the reddest bird on the continent?
In the East, the velvety red Scarlet Tanager is a favorite. Maybe the Summer Tanager. Though neither is seen in the open nearly as often as the respectably red Northern Cardinal.
[Northern Cardinal song, http://macaulaylibrary.org/audio/130905, 0.07-.09] But in the Southwest, another candidate pops out like a bright red flare on the tip of a branch: the Vermilion Flycatcher. 
[Vermilion Flycatcher song, http://macaulaylibrary.org/audio/105508, 0.17-.21]
Compared to shy Scarlet Tanagers and skulky cardinals, a Vermilion Flycatcher is a true showman. The male dashes out to capture butterflies and bees, then perches right at eye-level on an open branch. To sing its best to females and rival males, it hovers – butterfly-like – 50 feet in the air, a fluttering beacon of crimson.
[Vermilion Flycatcher song, http://macaulaylibrary.org/audio/105508, 0.17-.21]
The dashing Vermilion Flycatcher evokes sparkling names wherever it’s found, from the arid Southwest to South America: Mosquero Cardinal – or “cardinal-colored fly-killer” – and Brasita de Fuego or “little red-hot coal of fire”. Even its scientific name, a title bestowed by sober museum experts, bows to its flash: Pyrocephalus rubinus [py-ro-SEPH-uh-lus  roo-BEEN-us] – the ruby firehead.
[Vermilion Flycatcher song, http://macaulaylibrary.org/audio/105508, 0.17-.21]
You’ll find an amazing video of a pair of nesting Vermilion Flycatchers, when you come to our website, BirdNote.org. I’m Mary McCann.

                                                                               ###
Bird sounds provided by The Macaulay Library of Natural Sounds at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, New York. Recorded by
BirdNote’s theme music was composed and played by Nancy Rumbel and John Kessler.
Producer: John Kessler
Executive Producer: Sallie Bodie
© 2016 Tune In to Nature.org           August 2018         Narrator: Mary McCann

ID#   VEFL-01          VEFL-01-2016-08-24            

Alternate names source: http://www.tucsonaudubon.org/what-we-do/birding/getstarted/392-mascot.html

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