Date of this Version
Louis A. Somma, “Possible Addition of the Prairie Skink to the Diet of the Grackle,” from Nebraska Bird Review (June 1985) 53(2).
On 8 June 1984, at the intersection of California Street and the Union Pacific RR tracks, just west of Saddle Creek Road in Omaha, a Common Grackle (Quiscalus quiscala) was seen flying approximately 2 m above the observer, with a large adult prairie skink, (Eumeces septentrionalis) (Reptilia; Sauria) in its bill. The Grackle had difficulty flying, since the skink was somewhat heavy and struggling violently, The Grackle dropped to the ground about 7 m away and released the lizard. The skink lay on its back, twitching slightly. The distal half of its tail was missing. The lack of male breeding colors and presence of a relatively stout abdomen during this season indicated that it was a gravid female. When I approached to within 3 m of the Grackle, it immediately grabbed the skink and flew away. This observation occurred at 1315. It is not known if the lizard was eventually ingested.