[texbirds] Re: Tropical Mockingbird Update

  • From: Joseph Kennedy <josephkennedy36@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: johnawhittle@xxxxxxx
  • Date: Thu, 5 Jul 2012 14:30:27 -0500

On Wed, Jul 4, 2012 at 11:01 PM, John Whittle <johnawhittle@xxxxxxx> wrote:

> On July 3, the female Tropical Mockingbird was feeding the two fledglings
> just inside the
It could be possible that the young mockingbirds are full-blooded northern
mockingbirds. When I watched the pair shortly after they were discovered
around the nest the northern bird was the heavy duty stick builder and
weaver; the tropical watched from a nearby limb. Have not been back to
see them at the new nest.

If the tropical were a male, it would be singing even without other
tropical males to duel with; A mockingbird sings as part of its nature. It
sings day and night from conspicuous perches.

The tropical is very catholic in its mating system and is monogamous,
polyandrous, polygynous, and polygyandrous or in pairs, threesies or
foursies. All the birds will attend the nest and eggs both with building
and feeding. In some cases males start nests and females join in but would
be singing and advertising all over the place.

Many if not most female birds mate with other males in addition to the
chosen one. This can result from floaters sneaking in for a quickie or the
female going next door and soliciting the male there. DNA studies show that
as much as 70% of the eggs in some nests result in other than the paired
male matings.

If the tropical is a female, then the young would be hybrids unless there
is a secret male tropical wandering around outside Sabine Woods. A DNA test
of the youngsters would do well. Perhaps that could be done when the young
go back into their cage at night.

Joseph C. Kennedy
on Buffalo Bayou in West Houston

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