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Friday, May 7, 2010

Taiwan Formosan Blue Magpie MS


Formosan Blue Magpie MS

The Formosan Blue Magpie (Urocissa caerulea) is a member of the Corvidae family. It is also known as the Taiwan Magpie or the "long-tailed mountain lady". The Formosan Blue Magpie is an endemic species that can only be found in the mountains and lowland broadleaf forests of Taiwan. It is the national bird of Taiwan, however, this has never been formally accepted.

The Formosan Blue Magpie is a fairly large sized bird with a body length of approximately 64 cm or 25 inches, including the span of its long tail which consists of half of its total length. Males and females look alike. The head, neck, and breast are black, while the rest of the feathers are a rich blue, except for white markings on the wings, and black and white segmented markings on the tail. The bill, legs and feet are a bloody red. The eyes are yellow.
The breeding season is April to August.   A social breeder; their shallow nests are constructed of twigs, placed in tall trees.  Clutch size 4–7 eggs.
Formosan Magpies feed on a variety of foods, including fruits, insects, lizards, snakes, bird's eggs, birds, and small mammals.  They especially like papayas, persimmons, and other fruits, when they can find them.