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Great-tailed Grackle

Scientific name: Quiscalus mexicanus

Agriculture and urbanization combined to enable a dramatic range expansion of the Great-tailed Grackle from 1900 to 2000. Most Great-tailed Grackles are residents or partial migrants, with birds at the northern extent of the range moving south for the winter.

In an unusual trick for a blackbird, the Great-tailed Grackle can plunge-dive to catch small fish in the same way terns are commonly seen foraging. Great-tailed Grackles are social birds, nesting in colonies and gathering in large groups to roost.

Photograph © Greg Lavaty.