Exotic Bishop

EuplectesAn Orange or Red Bishop in Prospect Park. I don’t know if it’s a Southern (Euplectes orix) or a Northern (E. franciscanus)*. This is an escaped — or idiot-released — exotic, a victim of the pernicious avian pet trade. Native to Africa, there are now a few small breeding populations in TX and CA.EuplectesThe ring on the leg evidently indicates that this is supposedly a legitimately trafficked animal, but only because the laws have not caught up to the morality yet. The bird is obviously finding something to eat and isn’t shy. Once it looses its breeding plumage, it will look remarkably like a Grasshopper Sparrow.

*Update: Probably a Northern according to a comment on ebirdsnyc citing Birds of East Africa.

3 Responses to “Exotic Bishop”

  1. 1 Mary Jo Caffrey August 15, 2013 at 10:09 am

    Global Warming evidence on the wing? It’s hard to say how this exotic bird found Brooklyn. Now I’m sorry I haven’t been there myself.

    Your photo work is stunning.

  2. 2 Stephanie August 16, 2013 at 11:21 am

    Beautiful photos. Where in Prospect Park did you see this guy? Any tips for spotting him?

    • 3 mthew August 16, 2013 at 11:47 am

      He was munching happily away on the Lookout Hill side of Well House Drive, just west of the Well House itself. Can’t miss the colors. And he sings when he flies, a sound reminiscent of an American Goldfinch (it’s a finchy thing).

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