Kingbird Migration

April 1, 2020

Cassin’s Kingbirds are lovely, large, noisy flycatchers that look very similar to Western Kingbirds. Both are spring migrants from Mexico, but a small population of Cassin’s resides in the Los Angeles basin year-round. During migration though, both of these kingbirds can show-up in large numbers and the garden was filled with Cassin’s on Wednesday; by Thursday, the wave had already passed through and few birds were left.

Cassin’s Kingbird – Tyrannus vociferans

Like so many birds that that consume animals, kingbirds must expel non-digestible animal parts in the form of pellets. Owl pellets contain fur and bones; kingbird pellets mostly consist of insect exoskeletons. In the images below, a Cassin’s Kingbird expels a pellet, then watches in interest as it falls to the ground.

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