While walking down a tree-lined path, two of my colleagues who have just arrived from the UK asked me about some birds that were making a tremendous racket in the trees. The conversation went something like this:
Them: Mike, what kind of birds are those
Mike: Which ones?
Them: Those black ones with red spots on their wings
Mike: Aahh… red-winged black birds.
They didn’t believe me. I can’t imagine why. It is a very bland sort-of name for such a cheerful bird (like calling your black dog “Blackie”, but here they are.