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These birds are pretty amazing to watch and when the light hits them just right, you can really see the iridescence in their feathers – spectacular! I spent a morning in a marsh outside Anchorage, Alaska watching a pair tending to their nest and got a nice glimpse of that color when the sun peaked out just for a few minutes. The Black-billed Magpie (Pica hudsonia) is a bird in the crow family that inhabits the western half of North America. It is notable for its domed nests, and for being one of only four North American songbirds whose tail makes up half or more of the total body length (the others being the Yellow-billed Magpie, the Scissor-tailed Flycatcher, and the Fork-tailed Flycatcher).

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