Yellow-headed blackbird (Xanthocephalus xanthocephalus)

We were surprised one day to see a flock of yellow and black birds descend on the feeders in the front yard. They appeared late in the afternoon and were gone that evening; this is the only sighting I’ve had of these birds in the area.

Male, female, and immature birds can be seen below. These are the only yellow-headed birds with a black body in North America, although there is an extremely similar bird, the Yellow-hooded Blackbird of South America, Agelaius icterocephalus.

Yellow-headed blackbird

An adult female
Female Yellow-headed blackbird

common name Yellow-headed blackbird
domain Eukaryota
kingdom Animalia
phylum Chordata; subphylum Vertebrata
class Aves
order Passiformes
family Icteridae
genus Xanthocephalus
species xanthocephalus
location Central Texas
IUCN status Least concern
Extremely local species are itemized species seen at our homes: on the actual property, or in the air above it. (Across the street doesn’t count!) I began by itemizing species seen at our house in Copperas Cove, Texas, and later expanded the project to include our home in Renton, Washington.

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