Boat-tailed Grackle

Quiscalus major

Order

PASSERIFORMES

Family

Blackbirds (Icteridae)

Code 4

BTGR

Code 6

QUIMAJ

ITIS

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ILLUSTRATION

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PHOTOS

CONSERVATION STATUS

Least Concern

The Boat-tailed Grackle has a large range, estimated globally at 200,000 square kilometers. It is native to the United States and Canada and lives in Wetlands and Marine Coastal habitats, preferring saline areas. The global population of the bird is 3,700,000 individuals. The current population trends of the bird do not bring it near the population decline threshold that is used to determine qualification for inclusion to the IUCN Red List. Because of its population status, the Boat-tailed Grackle currently has an evaluation level of Least Concern.

IBIRD EXPLORER GENERAL

PHOTO SHARING AND DISCUSSION

BIRD PHOTOGRAPHY

SUMMARY

Overview

Boat-tailed Grackle: Large, black bird with a very long, keel-shaped tail. Male is iridescent blue-black with yellow or brown eyes. Black bill is slender and long. Legs and feet are gray. Forages walking on ground and wading in water. Strong direct flight with rapidly beating wings.


Range and Habitat

Boat-tailed Grackle: Resident along the Gulf Coast from Texas east and on the Atlantic Coast north to New York. Rarely strays from coastal salt marshes except in Florida where it is also inland. It is found around ponds and streams (Florida peninsula), farmlands, towns and cities. Their range is expanding up the Atlantic coast.

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SONGS AND CALLS

Voice Text

"jeeb, jeeb, jeeb"

INTERESTING FACTS

  • Boat-tailed Grackles from different regions (East Coast, Florida, west of Florida to Louisiana and west of Louisiana) have different eye colors.The reason is unknown.
  • Fledglings that fall into the water can swim well for short distances, using their wings as paddles.
  • They have an unusual mating system. Females locate their nests in a cluster or colony. Males compete for the right to defend and mate with all the females. This is known as harem defense polygyny.

SIMILAR BIRDS

RANGE MAP

CERange Map for Boat-tailed Grackle

FAMILY DESCRIPTION

TERMINOLOGY

CREDITS

Author

Gary Owen Dick

Artist

Irina Rud-Volga

HELP ME IDENTIFY A BIRD

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BIRDS AND BIRDING

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Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X