I spotted this Phainopepla — or as I call it, the black bird with red eyes and the name I can never remember — while hiking around Mississippi Bar this morning. While I was pleased to get a few good shots, it was a little frustrating that the tree branches blocked my view; and then of course my phone rang while I was moving around trying to find a better angle. By the time I gave up I was feeling more than a little dizzy from standing in the sun and looking straight up in the sky!

The name “Phainopepla” comes from the Greek for “shining robe,” a fitting characterization of the shiny, jet-black plumage of the adult male — from All About Birds

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