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Geococcyx californianus

May 8, 2010

The Roadrunner is a most interesting and unusual bird.  They run most everywhere they go, up to 15 mph, but will fly when absolutely necessary.  They’re mostly carnivorous and really like rattlesnake (tastes like chicken), lizard, and it’s claimed they can snatch Hummingbirds and Dragon Fly’s from the air.

They have a natural curiosity and aren’t especially fearful of humans.  I experienced that on our recent trip to Arizona.  This one had just grabbed a lizard, which you can see in it’s mouth, and was whacking it against the rocks.  At 20 yards away it watched me bring the camera up but once I began to slowly move forward, he turned and walked quickly away as seen in the next photo.

They’re about 24 inches long and have a blue and red streak behind the eye but the lizard makes it a little hard to see.

Most of you know about Roadrunners from the Wile E Coyote cartoons but Disney’s “beep-beep” was all Hollywood.  This is a recording of a Roadruner in the wild.

There’s a lot of information about the bird online.  This is just one site.


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One Comment
  1. Leslie Stone permalink

    The recording is great! They sound a little like a cross between a dove and a woodpecker!

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