|River Road Alterna|
Adult male. A large part of the variability in alterna occuring from west of about Sanderson, Texas can be attributed to various arrangements of the alternating bands when they are present. In its simplist form an alternate is but a single black band separating the primaries. The next step in alternate complexity is the triple alternate. Triple alternates can be as simple as those illustrated by this specimen or they can be highly complex, stand alone works of art that play off a design scheme put forth by the primary bands. Triple alternates can further evolve into various combinations of broken lines and simple geometric shapes that complement the primaries, sometimes even incorporating a stolen bit of orange as a centerpiece of the design. Speckling is the final extreme of alternate development. This specimen sports the famous "tomato red" River Road alterna are famous for.