A Unique Bird of Prey - Greater Roadrunner

This bird is probably not on the list that comes to mind when someone says "raptor", but it is indeed a crow-sized bird of prey. According to the Sibley Guide to Bird Life and Behavior the bird feeds on "large insects, scorpions, lizards, snakes, and small birds..." I was surprised to learn that it is in with cuckoos and anis in the Family Cuculidae. The National Geographic Field Guide (3rd Edition) describes it as a "large ground-dwelling cuckoo". It also says the song is a"dovelike cooing descending in pitch".

My life lister Roadrunner came on my first trip ever into New Mexico and it was a thrill for me. Having grown up in the Midwest, a bird like this is very exotic to me. I had stopped at a rest area, and of course, ever mindful of bird sightings in this new place, I was wandering around stretching my legs. Then - Boom - I saw it running around at the margins of the rest area. Very fun to see!

Here are some pictures and videos of this unique and interesting bird. The first video affords a fantastic close-up along with a great look at the classic "running" behavior that spawned the cartoon.

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Greetings from New Mexico, Roadrunner and Roundhouse



18 in. x 12.5 in.


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Greater Roadrunner Eggs in the Nest, Geococcyx Californianus, Western USA




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Greater Roadrunner at a Desert Waterhole, Geococcyx Californianus, Western USA



 
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Greater Roadrunner, New Mexico


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