Content tagged with "Birds"

Photograph of a male Purple Finch

Purple Finch

Haemorhous purpureus
In the 1930s, Roger Tory Peterson described the male purple finch as “a Sparrow dipped in raspberry juice.” Learn how to distinguish this native eastern bird from the more common house finch.

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Photo of a male purple martin perched on martin box

Purple Martin

Progne subis
Generations of Americans have greeted the annual return of these enchanting and endearing birds, with their cheerful calls, graceful flight, and faithful reappearance at a setup of martin boxes or gourd homes. Yet their populations have been declining. Find out what you can do to help these agile fliers.

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Photograph of a male red-bellied woodpecker

Red-Bellied Woodpecker

Melanerpes carolinus
A striking woodpecker with grayish white face and underparts, black-and-white banded upperparts, and a red band on the head or nape. The red belly is often not noticeable.

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Photograph of a red-headed woodpecker at a bird feeder

Red-Headed Woodpecker

Melanerpes erythrocephalus
A flurry of black-and-white wingbeats and a bright, all-red head announce the presence of the red-headed woodpecker. The voice is a loud, descending “kweeer.”

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Photo of a red-tailed hawk perched

Red-Tailed Hawk

Buteo jamaicensis
Adult red-tailed hawks are large, brown above, and white below, with a brown-streaked band on the belly and a rust-red tail with a narrow black band near the end. They are commonly seen along highways, watching for prey.

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Photo of a male red-winged blackbird singing

Red-Winged Blackbird

Agelaius phoeniceus
These crimson-shouldered residents of marshes, wet meadows and weedy roadside ditches are well-known by most rural Missourians. Their “konk-o-REEE” song likely emanates from every pond in Missouri.

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Aythya americana
The redhead is well named. The male is distinctive with its chestnut-red head, black breast, and gray body. A diving duck or pochard, the redhead typically dives completely underwater to forage.

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Ring-Necked Duck

Aythya collaris
The ring-necked duck is named for a chestnut-colored neck ring that’s hard to see. The pointy head and the male’s well-defined black and gray pattern are the best field characteristics.

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large colorful bird in grass

Ring-Necked Pheasant

Phasianus colchicus
Long-tailed and chickenlike, the ring-necked pheasant was introduced to America in the 1880s as a gamebird. It’s present in the northern quarter of the Missouri and in parts of the Bootheel.

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Photo of a gray rock pigeon standing among rocks

Rock Pigeon (Rock Dove)

Columba livia
This is the common pigeon of city parks, downtown buildings, barns, and cliffs. Many color forms exist. The wild type has a dark head, breast, and shoulders, a light gray body, two dark bars on the wings, a white rump, and a dark band on the tip of the tail.

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