Saturday, January 22, 2011

Royal Flycatcher

Erika and I missed most of the 1970s.  (It is a bit disconcerting that so did most everyone under 30 or so.)  In our case, we spent the decade pursuing our advanced degrees at Louisiana State University under George H. Lowery, Jr.  During the decade, we spent a total of 32 months in the Amazon jungles of Peru and Ecuador, recovering between expeditions by amassing graduate course credits.

This photo is of a Royal Flycatcher.  Not a whole lot is known about this bird.  Ornithologists argue about how many species of Royal Flycatchers exist--anywhere from one to five.  (If there is more than one species, then this bird is an Amazonian Royal Flycatcher.)  Scientists do agree that Royal Flycatchers are seldom seen and presumably rare or uncommon.  They are said to nest in swampy areas.  With 15 feet of rain a year, and no dry season, our study area in eastern Ecuador met that criterion. We encountered the species only a few times, and never except in our bird nets.  One problem is that they don't raise their crests unless they are feeling sexy or angry.  This one is pretty angry, since Erika is holding its feet.


  1. hello,

    do you know if there are any of these birds in Canada or the USA?

  2. Royal Flycatchers occur from southern Mexico through northern South America.