Kiskadee Birds in Bermuda
In 1957, some 200 Kiskadee birds were brought in from Trinidad and introduced in Bermuda. These birds with bright yellow belly and dark brown back were known to eat anole lizards of the Caribbean keeping their population in control. So they were introduced for the same purpose in Bermuda. But the idea failed quite miserably.
After coming to Bermuda these birds changed their eating habits and started to feed more on eggs and chicks of smaller birds like the endemic White eyed Vireo and the native Bluebird. They also ate fruits and berries and were instrumental in spreading the seeds of invasive plants all over the island. You can also often see them plucking out flying insects from the air in an acrobatic style. The Kiskadees also love to eat small fishes from the ponds that have been introduced to control mosquito.
So rather than controlling the lizard, they were eating up many other useful creatures that are necessary for Bermuda's ecology. In fact, Kiskadees are primarily responsible for the extinction of Bermuda Cicadas. They are therefore now termed as birds of invasive species in Bermuda.
Photo: Becky Matsubara, flickr, cc by 2.0
Kisakadees can grow up to some 10 inches long. They look brilliant with their brown and yellow body. The white head has a black patch that looks like a cap. And there is a black band running from the eyes. They are one of the larger birds in Bermuda.
Since they eat such varieties of food, they also compete with other birds in the island for food. They are quite aggressive in nature and sometimes mob bigger birds like the crows. The name of the bird comes from the loud sound it makes, kis-kaa-dee! The bird nests usually in the trees during summer and spring. They lay 2 - 4 eggs.
1. Check out Bermuda Birds
to know about all the birds in Bermuda and the best bird watching locations in the island.