Vermilion Flycatcher (Female)

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I’m going to be away for a week.  It’s our annual vacation at the Elkhorn Ranch, a wonderful guest ranch located about 60 miles from our Tucson home.  Among its innumerable attractions is the large number of songbirds of many species that inhabit the property.  In years past I’ve photographed these birds and posted images and I’ll be doing so again this year.  I don’t know whether I’ll be able to post this blog during the week but I’ll definitely resume next Sunday.

Today’s image is of a female Vermilion Flycatcher.  From time to time I post images of the males of this species and I’ve commented about how accessible they are, if you know where to look for them.  I’ve found that females are a different story. They are definitely more timid than the males and they seem to be less territorial.  A female of the species seems to wander around more than the males do, showing up from time to time in a location and then moving on to somewhere else.  Perhaps, that’s because in non-breeding season the males will drive out all interlopers from their territories and that may include females.  At any rate, I’ve had much less success finding and photographing female Vermilions than I have had with the males.

I was able to photograph this female the other day at Reid Park in urban Tucson.

At first blush she doesn’t look at all like a Vermilion Flycatcher.  She lacks any of the male’s scarlet plumage.  But, look at her body shape and the plumage on her head and wings and it’s apparent that she’s of the same species.  There’s a bit of color variation among females.  Some have bellies that are orange in color.  Others, like this bird, have lemon yellow abdomens.  Although the females lack the males’ showiness, I find them to be every bit as attractive.  This is simply a beautiful little bird.

Image made with a Canon 5Div, 100-400 ISII zoom lens, aperture priority setting, ISO 1000, f5.6 @ 1/1250.


3 Replies to “Vermilion Flycatcher (Female)”

  1. Tom Munson says:

    Nice shot, Steve. She is a beauty. Have a great vacation.

  2. Nicki says:

    I hope to learn all about your horse buddies at the Elkhorn Ranch. They have a sister ranch in Montana! Keep that in mind for July: Montana Elkhorn Ranch.

  3. tkiiatmindspringcom says:

    I agree, the female is every bit as pretty as the male.

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