New World Blackbirds (Icteridae)

Common Grackle (Quiscalus quiscula) - HBW 16, p. 778

French: Quiscale bronzé German: Purpurgrackel Spanish: Zanate Común
Other common names: Florida Grackle (quiscula); Bronzed Grackle (versicolor); Purple Grackle (stonei)

Taxonomy: G.[racula] Quiscula Linnaeus, 1758, coast of South Carolina, USA.
According to DNA data, this species is ancestral to other members of genus. In the past, races versicolor and stonei were sometimes treated as two separate species. Further, these two races intergrade in E USA from Connecticut S to Louisiana; intermediate populations described as a distinct race, ridgwayi, but such treatment of this variable form unwarranted. Three subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution:

  • versicolor Vieillot, 1819 - breeds in S Canada from E British Columbia E to S Quebec and Newfoundland, S in USA (E of Rocky Mts and W of Appalachians) to C Texas and W Mississippi; winters S to S Texas and E to South Carolina.
  • stonei Chapman, 1935 - E USA from New Jersey and Pennsylvania S (mostly along Appalachians) to inland Louisiana, Alabama, Georgia and South Carolina.
  • quiscula (Linnaeus, 1758) - SE USA on Atlantic and Gulf coasts from S North Carolina S to Louisiana and S Florida (including Florida Keys).