This Independence Day weekend brought with it multiple observations of Scissor-tailed Flycatchers - mostly in pairs or family units.


Thursday morning while out in Moniteau County at the Renken Farm location trying to get photo documentation of the Savannah Sparrow (success, by the way!), I was unable to locate any Bobolinks at the fields where the BOBO were previously observed. I decided to check some of the surrounding areas that still have standing grasses which led me farther west across Hwy 87 down some gravel roads. It was here that I was able to observe two different family groups of ST Flycatchers.


Then later in the weekend as my wife and I were traveling south out of California on Hwy 87, we spotted two adults on a utility wire about 3/4 mile south of Hwy 70 and another family unit on Hwy T about 1/2 mile East of Hwy 87.


Last night at the Russellville High School track, I was able to relocate the pair previously observed about a week ago. As night fell, I watched as the mighty Eastern Kingbird (with all its tenacity) was bullied and chased from its perch by one of the ST Flycatchers. Here I thought that the Eastern Kingbird RULED; apparently not when the ST Flycatchers are around.


That is one thing that seems consistent. Everywhere I've observed ST Flycatchers, I have also seen E. Kingbirds in the same proximity or not very far away. In all cases but the one last night at the track, the two species seemed tolerant of each other's presence - as if the incident last night was isolated in my limited experience with these two.


It's just seems crazy to see so many so close when they're considered to be rare.


Image of "one" of the ST Flycatchers:

Image of the out of range Savannah Sparrow:


Good Birding - stay hydrated!

Chris Barrigar
Cole Co.
Russellville, MO
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