Kelly Vaughn

Vermilion flycatchers (Pyrocephalus obscurus) are indisputably adorable. That said, they’re also members of the tyrant flycatcher family, which is perhaps a bit comical — but it might also be why some of the birds in the Angry Birds franchise resemble them. While males, such as the one pictured here, are marked with the bright red heads that characterize the birds, females are often confused with other species because of their lack of coloration. In Arizona, vermilion flycatchers are most frequently found in the southeast quadrant of the state, although some have been spotted in urban parks in Phoenix and elsewhere. And the “flycatcher” designation is apt: The birds are known to hunt from an open perch, plucking flying insects, such as butterflies, straight out of the air. They’ll also capture larger terrestrial prey — beetles, grasshoppers and spiders — then beat their supper to death before eating it. Maybe that bit isn’t quite so comical after all.