Verification of Unusual Sight Record
For Utah

Rec. # 2005-13

Common name:

Scissor-tailed Flycatcher

Scientific name: Tyrannus forficatus
Date: 22 May 2005
Time: Approx 9 am
Length of time observed: 3-4 Minutes
Number: 1
Age: Poss juvenile
Location: Along Notom-Bullfrog Rd at or near Notom ranch, approx 5 mi So of Hwy 24
County: Wayne
Latilong: 38 deg N, 111 deg W
Elevation: unknown
Distance to bird: 50 ft, Clear unobstructed view of entire bird
Optical equipment: Binoculars-8x36 Bushnells, Greg; 8x35 Leicas, Clare
Weather: Clear, sunny, 80s
Light Conditions: Excellent. We were driving south, bird was perched on right side fencewire, sun was to our left.
Description:        Size of bird: Robin-sized, but more slender
(Description:)       Basic Shape: Slender with tail longer than body
(Description:)  Overall Pattern: Light grey body & head, darker grey wings, black tail
(Description:)            Bill Type: Black
Field Marks and
Identifying Characteristics:
Long, thin streamers extended about 3-4" beyond tail.
Very light pink on sides and short streamers could indicate possible juvenile. Deeply forked tail and streamers very evident in flight.
Song or call & method of delivery: Not heard.
Behavior: Perched on fence wire. Flew a short distance and then back to fence. Finally flew back about 50 yds from road to a clump of trees.
Habitat: Ranchsite, on fencewire dividing irrigated grassy field from road.
Similar species and how
were they eliminated:
Light grey head eliminated fork-tailed flycatcher. Light grey front with light pinkish sides and tail streamers eliminated western kingbird.
Previous experience with
this & similar species:
First observed 15 September 1984 in Oklahoma & observed in Texas on several occasions.
References consulted: Sibley Guide to Birds, Peterson Guide to Western birds consulted while bird was in sight.
Description from: From memory
Observer: Clare & Greg Oskay
Observer's address: 551 Teton Trail, Indianapolis, IN 46217
Observer's e-mail address:
Other observers who independently identified this bird: none
Date prepared: 5 June 2005
Additional material: No_additional_Materials
Additional comments: Please notify us if sighting is accepted, not accepted or published.