Vermilion Flycatcher, Pyrocephalus
The flamboyantly plumaged male Vermilion Flycatcher is the target
of every birder making a first visit to the desert southwest of the
States. This is the far northern limit of this species'
range, which extends southwards through Mexico, Central America, and
much of South
The female is much less colorful, showing a degree of sexual dimorphism unusual among flycatchers.
Above, a female apparently viewing potential nest site; Birds of North America Online reports
nest "almost always fitted into horizontal fork of branch in an area free of leaves." Below, female
on nest; only females incubate in this species.
Male approaching female during mating season.
and below, a male early in breeding season (February) in Arizona
attacking his own reflection in an automobile window. I was lucky to
come upon this spectacular behavior, not uncommon with this species according to Birds of North America Online.
Above, a juvenile female; note the fresh feathers. Below, a first-cycle male in early spring, with patches of bright red.