Monday, May 1, 2017

Carib Grackle

The Carib grackle is also known as the Lesser Antillean grackle. The Lesser Antilles are a group of islands starting out southeast of the Greater Antilles and arcing down almost to South America, forming the outer boundary of the Caribbean Sea with the Atlantic Ocean. The Carib grackle is found in the Lesser Antilles and northern South America, east of the Andes, from Columbia east to Venezuela and south to northeastern Brazil. There are 8 subspecies which differ in size, plumage shade and vocalizations. 
A male grackle. My picture does not capture the violet iridescence of the feathers on the upper torso. 
The adult male is about 11 inches long, the same as the Greater Antillean grackle, but its bulbous tail is not as long as the other species of grackle and does not appear as bulbous. Its black feathers have a violet iridescence. Females are smaller and have shorter tails and brown plumage, but darker on the underparts. 
Another male.
I believe this is a female grackle. Note the smaller size and the much smaller tail. The light is such that it does not catch the brown in the more brown plumage. 
A grackle nest in the same tree these birds were photographed in. 
One of the subspecies is found on the Island of St. Lucia, where I saw these. 


  1. Were these pictures taken at the lookout point we stopped at first? Great next picture. It looks a little messy for such a sleek bird.

    1. Yes, while you were listening to the man expounding on local history, I was wandering around and this is part of what occupied my time.

  2. Grackle is a perfect name for this bird. He looks and sounds---grackley.