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Nicaraguan Grackle - BirdForum Opus

Photo © by Stanley Jones
Guanacaste Province

, Costa Rica, March, 2012]]

Quiscalus nicaraguensis


Male 29 cm (11½ in); female 24 cm (9½ in)
They have quite long legs Male

  • Black overall plumage with violet and green iridescence

Female brown with darker wings and paler belly

Similar species

Great-tailed Grackle is larger with significantly longer wings. On Great-tailed the wing tips extend beyond the vent. Nicaraguan may also appear duller than Great-tailed—more black—with a clearly shorter tail (but tails vary considerably).


Photo © by Stanley Jones
Guanacaste Province, Costa Rica, March, 2012

Costa Rica and Nicaragua in a relatively small area overlapping the border.


This is a monotypic species[1].


Swamps and wet pastureland; lake shores and river banks.



They mostly feed on the ground on seeds, insects, arthropods and small invertebrates. Often seen in the company of grazing cattle.


Displaying male
Photo © by bajadreamer
Cano Negro, Costa Rica, May 2019

They breed in small colonies.


  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2018. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: v2018. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. Fraga, R. (2019). Nicaraguan Grackle (Quiscalus nicaraguensis). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from https://www.hbw.com/node/62284 on 10 August 2019).

Recommended Citation

External Links

GSearch checked for 2020 platform.