Monday, May 5, 2008

Bunting Report

In one of the parks where I walk there's a meadow where the Indigo Buntings always appear in April and May. I generally don't have much luck seeing them there later in the summer, so I'm guessing it's more a place to cruise for dates than a nesting ground. In any case, they're all over that meadow just now, and since I'm usually visiting early in the day, I get to see the the males' plumage in its full glory, as it flashes deep turquoise in the morning sun. The boys also have a pretty, high-pitched song that's very distinctive, which is helpful to sighting them, since they're small. I always hear them before I see them. The Cornell site says Indigo Buntings are declining in the Southeast, which seems true to me. I think I saw them more often ten years ago than I do now. They're a popular cage bird in Mexico, which sort of horrifies me. Since I've only seen them wild, I can't imagine imprisoning such a bright, beautiful thing.

Read about the Indigo Bunting at Animal Diversity Web and the Cornell Lab of Ornithology.
Indigo Bunting photo courtesy of the Kingsville, Texas Chamber of Commerce website.


Perfumeshrine said...

What a beautiful little critter! I have never seen such a brightly blue bird before unless in a zoo or park (the one in Miami comes to mind). It does seem a shame that human vanity would want to capture something like that as a prize...

chayaruchama said...

Song to go with fab photo :

Jesse Winchester's "Songbird "

I love that featherling, I do.
And your sotd.

Beautiful creatures should NOT be caged, patently.
[That includes US, btw...]

Kissing you from here, coffee in hand.

Bozo said...

They are gorgeous. We have one at our feeder that comes over and pecks at his reflection in the window. I've never heard one sing-- do they?

BitterGrace said...

They are gorgeous, E. Instant cheer to see one on the wing.

I can't remember that JW song, Chaya. I'll have to pop over to itunes. Do you really like Perfume of Paradise? It took me a long time to warm up to it--I thought I hated it--but once I came around, I fell in love.

Only the boys sing, Bozo, and mostly just when they're mating, I think. You can hear their song at the Cornell link.