Phainopepla female
Phainopepla male

The Feather Files
Name: Phainopepla
Species: Phainopepla nitens
Native to and Migration: Deserts and arid woodlands of the southwestern United States and Mexico. Breeds twice each year in two different habitats. Some spend winters in the southern part of its breeding range.
Date Seen: March 2017
Location: North of Fountain Hills, Arizona
Notes: Individual birds will eat at least 1,100 mistletoe berries per day when they are available.

They are versatile songsters that can imitate up to 12 other species of birds. Though I see them frequently, they are harder to photograph than other birds because they spook very easily.

2 thoughts on “Phainopepla

    1. The Bird sites say this bird is hard to find – rarely seen… but they are in my AZ back yard most days. I thought they were quite common – like the Cardinals and Doves and even the Great Horned Owl…


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