New World Blackbirds (Icteridae)

Great-tailed Grackle (Quiscalus mexicanus) - HBW 16, p. 780

French: Quiscale à longue queue German: Dohlengrackel Spanish: Zanate Mexicano

Taxonomy: C.[orvus] mexicanus J. F. Gmelin, 1788, area around Veracruz city, Veracruz, Mexico.
Closely related to, and may form a superspecies with, Q. major; occasional hybrids between the two reported along coast of S USA (in Texas and Louisiana). Related also to extinct Q. palustris of C Mexican plateau. Recent study of mitochondrial DNA revealed two clades with deep sequence divergence (3·1%), one formed by W races nelsoni and graysoni, the other including remaining races; despite DNA divergence, nelsoni hybridizes freely with monsoni in S USA (California and Arizona) following range expansions in 20th century. In Mexico, nominate race inte.. View all taxonomy...

Taxonomy: C.[orvus] mexicanus J. F. Gmelin, 1788, area around Veracruz city, Veracruz, Mexico.
Closely related to, and may form a superspecies with, Q. major; occasional hybrids between the two reported along coast of S USA (in Texas and Louisiana). Related also to extinct Q. palustris of C Mexican plateau. Recent study of mitochondrial DNA revealed two clades with deep sequence divergence (3·1%), one formed by W races nelsoni and graysoni, the other including remaining races; despite DNA divergence, nelsoni hybridizes freely with monsoni in S USA (California and Arizona) following range expansions in 20th century. In Mexico, nominate race intergrades with obscurus in Guerrero (Balsas valley), with prosopidicola in S Tamaulipas, and with loweryi in extreme W Campeche. Eight subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution:

  • nelsoni (Ridgway, 1901) - SW USA (from C California, Nevada and SW Arizona) S to NW Mexico (N Baja California and Sonora).
  • monsoni (A. R. Phillips, 1950) - SW USA (SE California, C Arizona, Utah and Colorado S to New Mexico and W Texas) S to C Mexico (Zacatecas).
  • prosopidicola (Lowery, 1938) - C & S USA (from Nebraska S to C Texas and Louisiana) and NE Mexico (Coahuila, Nuevo León and Tamaulipas).

     See all 8 subspecies
  • nelsoni (Ridgway, 1901) - SW USA (from C California, Nevada and SW Arizona) S to NW Mexico (N Baja California and Sonora).
  • monsoni (A. R. Phillips, 1950) - SW USA (SE California, C Arizona, Utah and Colorado S to New Mexico and W Texas) S to C Mexico (Zacatecas).
  • prosopidicola (Lowery, 1938) - C & S USA (from Nebraska S to C Texas and Louisiana) and NE Mexico (Coahuila, Nuevo León and Tamaulipas).
  • graysoni P. L. Sclater, 1884 - coast of Sinaloa, in W Mexico.
  • obscurus Nelson, 1900 - W coast of Mexico from Nayarit S to Guerrero.
  • mexicanus (J. F. Gmelin, 1788) - C Mexico (from E Jalisco, San Luis Potosí and S Tamaulipas) S to Nicaragua.
  • loweryi (Dickerman & A. R. Phillips, 1966) - Yucatán Peninsula, including Cozumel I and other nearby islands, S to Belize.
  • peruvianus Swainson, 1838 - Costa Rica, Panama, and Colombia E on Caribbean coast to NW Venezuela (Zulia) and S along Pacific coast to W Ecuador and extreme NW Peru (Tumbes).