Couch's Kingbird,  Tyrannus couchii

Number of accepted Couch's Kingbird records for Louisiana = 16 as of June 2015  

Accepted Records

(1965-01; formerly 81-6). A recent taxonomic revision (Traylor, 1979, Auk 96: 221-223) of the Tropical Kingbird species complex has elevated the race T. melancholicus couchii to full species status; the AOU Checklist Committee has accepted Traylor's revision. The only specimen of Tropical Kingbird from Louisiana (LSUMZ 48676), that of an adult male taken 9 October 1965 near Johnsons Bayou, Cameron Parish by L. C. Binford, was identified by Drs. M. A. Traylor and W. E. Lanyon as couchii. As such, the official State List is amended to replace Tropical Kingbird with Couch's Kingbird.

One male (1986-50) from 20-21 Dec 1986, Cameron: W. side of Calcasieu Pass, 2 1/2 mi. SW of Cameron; B. Mac Myers III and Steven W. Cardiff (LSUMZ 131099); AB41(2):293. This was the second state record and specimen.

One male (98-129) on 3 May 1998, Cameron: East Jetty Woods, 2 mi. S of Cameron; Paul E. Conover (LSUMZ 165557; Donna L. Dittmann); FN 52(3): 342, LOS News 184: 16.

One female (98-134) on 25 Jun 1998, Calcasieu: just N of Cameron Par. line on Fruge Road; Steven W. Cardiff (LSUMZ 165558; DLD) and Donna L. Dittmann; FN 52(4): 467.

One female (99-53) on 17 Jun 1999, Calcasieu: Sidney Derouen Road, ca 2 mi. W of Hwy. 101; Michael J. Stevens (LSUMZ 165559; Donna L. Dittmann), Christopher C. Witt, and Daniel G. Christian; NAB 53(4): 398. The bird was in breeding condition and, circumstantially, this represents the first breeding record of this species for Louisiana.

One adult male (99-55) on 18 Sep 1999, Cameron: Garner Ridge, 3 mi. W of Johnsons Bayou School; Steven W. Cardiff (LSUMZ 165560; DLD) and Donna L. Dittmann; NAB 54(1): 64.

One (1991-06) from 10-11 Feb 1991, St. Charles: 1.5 mi. W of Paradis; John P. Sevenair, Al and Gwen Smalley, and Robert D. Purrington (ph). The bird was originally found and photographed by Charles Frank and Bill Ayers on 26 or 27 Jan; AB45(2):285 says "in or near St. John the Baptist."

One (1993-14) on 16 Jan 1993, Calcasieu: Hwy. 108 near Vinton, approximately 7 mi. from I-10 and 8 mi. from intersection of Hwy. 27; John and Jana Whittle.

One (1993-56) on 19 Nov 1993, Vermilion: approximately 4 mi. N of the Gulf of Mexico between Pecan Island and Grand Chenier; Gay M. Gomez; AB48(1):119.

One adult male (2001-86) on 27 Dec 2001, Evangeline: 4 mi. W of Ville Platte, 1/2 mi. N of Hwy. 10, near Millers Lake; Steven W. Cardiff (LSUMZ 172713) and D. L. Dittmann (*).

Two immature females (2004-60) on 31 Oct 2004, Cameron: Garner Ridge, 3 mi. W of Johnsons Bayou School; NAB59(1):93.

One male (2006-05) from 2-29 Jan 2006, Red River: 1 mi. E of Williams, ¼ mi. NE of intersection of Hwy. 1 and parish road 408; Paul M. Dickson, Phillip A. Wallace (ph), James L. Ingold (audio), Rosemary Seidler, Paul Miliotis, Dennis Forshee, John T. McBride, Jr., and Justin Bosler (ph); NAB60(2):245.

One (2007-79) on 27 November-3 December 2007, Bossier: Bossier City; Jeff Trahan (ph) and Terry Davis (ph). Description of call notes was definitive for Couch’s.

Photo by Jeff Trahan

One (2009-85) on 29 December 2009, Lafayette: near Ridge, Judice Park off Golden Grain Road; Michael J. Musumeche (ph), James Beck (video includes voice), and Devin Bosler (ph), Jay V. Huner (ph), [Paul E. Conover (ph only]; first discovered by Kevin Leigh and apparently present through 23 January 2010.

Photo by Paul E. Conover

One male (2011-07) on 15-22 February 2011, Rapides: east side of Messina Road (Forest Road 273) approximately one mile south of Hwy. 28 West; Steve Shively (ph), Jay V. Huner, and Devin Bosler (ph).

Photo by Steve Shively

One (2013-049) on 22 December 2013, Vermilion: Lomire Rd., approximately 7 km SSW of Kaplan; Erik I. Johnson (video and audio).

Photo by Erik I. Johnson

Unaccepted Records

Pair (1971-01; formerly 83-15) at Holly Beach, Cameron Parish, 8 May 1971. Louisiana records of this species will come under intense scrutiny following the addition of the very similar Tropical Kingbird (see above) to the state list. Contributors should be aware, however, that the Committee is willing to review records as unresolved identifications in the case of look-alike pairs such as this (e. g., the Committee will review records submitted as Tropical, Couch's, or Tropical/Couch's).