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image: phainopepla.jpg

Common Name: Phainopepla

Scientific Name: Phainopepla nitens

Size: 7-8 inches (18-21cm)

Habitat: North America; found throughout the American Southwest. Found in saguaro cactus forests, chaparral and woodland areas.

Status: Least Concern. Global Population: 4,000,000 mature individuals. Common throughout its range. Size of populations has been decreasing due to habitat loss.

Diet: Berries and flying insects.

Breeding: Two to three eggs are laid in a woven nest of twigs and fiber.

Cool Facts: The name “Phainopepla” comes from the Greek word for “shining robe”. They rarely drink water, getting their moisture from berries instead. Phainopeplas love mistletoe berries and can eat over a thousand berries in a day.

Depending on the habitat, Phainopeplas can be very territorial. In the desert, they perch atop saguaro and ocotillos, fiercely defending their territories. In woodland areas, however, they share nesting areas. Phainopeplas winter in deserts and summer in woodland areas. Phainopeplas, when pursued by predators or handled by humans, mimics the calls of other birds.

Found in Songbird Remix Characters

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