What did roadrunners used to be called?

This morning as I was ruminating on the wrong football team names that appear to be proliferating these days, I paused when I got to the RIGHT name for the team from Arizona. Now, it’s obvious that if you’re going to name your Arizona-based NFL franchise after a bird, it needs to be a bird that’s associated with the state of Arizona. And the only bird that’s associated in the public consciousness with Arizona is the roadrunner.

Now that I’ve solved the problem of correcting the name of Arizona’s NFL franchise, let’s move on to more pressing issues.

Roadrunners have almost certainly been around in the Arizona desert for longer than there have been any roads to speak of (in Arizona). So, what did the early settlers in, say, Tombstone, Purgatory, and Globe call these critters? What did Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday cal them as they watched the birds that skittered in front of them on their way to the OK Corral?

And when DID they start getting called roadrunners?

I’m pretty sure they had roads in Arizona back in Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday’s day. “Road” does not necessarily imply “pavement”.

Wikipedia informs me that “chaparral cock” is an alternate name for the roadrunner. The Latin name, Geococcyx californianus, seems to mean “Californian land-cuckoo”.

Considering the politics of AZ., how about the Arizona Cuckoos?

From here:

Another name is Snake Killer, from its habit of killing snakes including rattlesnakes.

Let’s avoid political jabs in GQ.

Geococcyx californianus? What happened to acceleratii incredibus?

They might not be able to use Phoenix Roadrunners. There were several hockey teams named that, and their trademark might still be in force. For all I know there still is a minor league Phoenix team called that.

More like “ground-cuckoo,” a cuckoo that lives on the ground.

Who said anything about Phoenix? They should be called the Arizona Roadrunners.

If the name includes Phoenix, they could use “Firebirds.” Because that’s what a phoenix is.

Phoenix did have a AAA baseball team called the Firebirds before the MLB Diamondbacks appeared on the scene.

As for Cardinals, it was their name when they previously played in St. Louis, and before that in Chicago. They’re one of the original teams in the NFL, dating back to 1920. And while the cardinal isn’t primarily associated with the state, there are cardinals in Arizona.

I still say they should have been named the “Gila Monsters.”

The might have an issue with these guys https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phoenix_Firebirds but then again, the name’s been dormant for a few years and is unlikely to be revived. I watched them play many a game over the years.

I’d see them cut across the road in front of me driving in N. Mexico; always had be sure I wouldn’t hit a pursuing Overconfidentii vulgaris.

fade in to early planning session…
#1: We can name the team after our state bird, the Chapparal Cock!
#2: Let’s go with “Roadrunner”.

A genetically modified bird Patented by Acme Corporation, of course.

There have been roads there for as long as there have been people. And before there were people there, the local fauna didn’t have any name at all, because we’re the only ones who name things.

Oh get real. Wile E. is the one who’s cuckoo.

And Pyrrhuloxia’s, a close relative of the cardinal. In the US, only found there, NM, and Texas.

Speedy Gonzales?