Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Wild Birds

This weeks wild bird is the cowbird. On a recent brightly sunny day (too sunny for good pictures) this cowbird landed on the feeder. The Brown-headed Cowbird is a stocky blackbird with a fascinating approach to raising its young. Females forgo building nests and instead put all their energy into producing eggs, sometimes more than three dozen a summer. These they lay in the nests of other birds, abandoning their young to foster parents, usually at the expense of at least some of the host’s own chicks.
 If a group comes by they will empty my feeders very quickly. Supposedly a ground feeder but as you can see they get it where they can.

On a recent day when I hadn't filled the feeder the Mrs. landed on the finch feeder.
 
Here the two are on the ground beneath the feeder. If you look closely you can tell it was a rainy day. Little beads of water collect on their feathers.
 

15 comments:

Margaret Adamson said...

A lovely looking birds and great shots of them.

Rose said...

I really had a mess of them this winter...or maybe 'mass' is a better word. I have never seen so many at one time in one place ever.

They could empty a feeder is short order.

Terri @ Coloring Outside the Lines said...

Pretty as they are, they are definitely not one of my favorite birds- and they really will empty a feeder lickety split!

Karen @ away for the weekend said...

I don't think I've seen cowbirds in my area. I found your story about their nesting habits (or lack thereof) very interesting! Nice shots, too!

Ela said...

They are so pretty !
Great photos !
Greetings

eileeninmd said...

Hello Carletta, great post on the Cowbird.. The male is pretty with his shiny brown head.. Enjoy your day and week ahead!

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

Pretty but I do not like these nest thieves. I don't admire bad mothers ;)))! And there is "my feeder again though, doing what it is supposed to do, while mine sits here filled with shells.

TexWisGirl said...

we still have some hanging around here, too. they love the feeders, dang it! :)

Karen said...

A great looking pair. Usually we have lots at the feeders this time of year, but not one yet this spring.

JoAnn ( Scene Through My Eyes) said...

Great photos of the birds.

Red said...

I certainly don't like to see cowbirds around as thin I may see a chipping sparrow feeding a baby twice as big as the adult chipping sparrow.

Pietro and Cynthia said...

Fine pictures of the birds!

Adam Jones said...

That's a cool looking bird. I like the iridescent colour on the back.

Marie C said...

They are fascinating birds, especially with their non-nesting habits! We used to see them a lot at my Mom's. Lovely shots!

Ida said...

Nice shots of this bird. That first one really shows off the shimmer on the males feathers.