Great-tailed Grackle

(Quiscalus mexicanus)

A big, brash blackbird, the male Great-tailed Grackle shimmers in iridescent black and purple, and trails a tail that will make you look twice. The rich brown females are about half the male’s size. Flocks of these long-legged, social birds strut and hop on suburban lawns, golf courses, fields, and marshes in Texas, the Southwest, and southern Great Plains. In the evening, raucous flocks pack neighborhood trees, filling the sky with their amazing (some might say ear-splitting) voices.

Although you’ll usually see them feeding on land, Great-tailed Grackles may also wade into the water to grab a frog or fish.

Information from the All About Birds website,, © Cornell Lab of Ornithology.