The Tropical Kingbird is a large flycatcher species found in the Americas. Adults have a length of 8-9 inches and a wingspan of 14-15 inches, and they weigh between 1.1-1.5 ounces. These birds have a distinct black cap on their head and a white throat and underparts, with olive-brown upperparts and wings. They also have a broad bill with a hooked tip, which they use to catch insects in flight.
Tropical Kingbirds are non-migratory in their southern range, but they migrate northward during the breeding season. They can be found in southern Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and California during the summer months. They are also known to breed as far north as Kansas and Missouri. During the winter, they return to their non-breeding range in Central and South America.
One of the most distinguishing field marks of the Tropical Kingbird is its characteristic call. It has a loud, sharp “kip” or “weep” sound that can often be heard before the bird is seen. Additionally, its black cap and white throat and underparts make it stand out from other flycatchers in the region.
Tropical Kingbirds are often found perched on a high exposed branch or wire, scanning the air for insects. They are known to aggressively defend their territory and will chase off other birds, including much larger species. They also occasionally eat fruit, and have been observed catching small lizards and snakes.
Overall, the Tropical Kingbird is a distinctive and fascinating species of bird. Its distinctive call and striking black and white plumage make it a joy to observe, and its aggressive behavior adds an interesting element to its behavior.