Daily Archives: August 10, 2014

Red-winged Blackbird

Red-winged Blackbird

The Red-winged Blackbird wears epaulets to display his rank. He is Captain of the Red Maple Swamp beyond the woods. Sometimes he visits our backyard for seeds.

The genus name is Latin derived from Ancient Greek, agelaios, meaning “belonging to a flock”. The species name, phoeniceus, is from the Latin word meaning “deep red”.

Red-winged Blackbird

According to Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s All About Birds

Red-winged Blackbirds eat mainly insects in the summer and seeds, including corn and wheat, in the winter. Sometimes they feed by probing at the bases of aquatic plants with their slender bills, prying them open to get at insects hidden inside. In fall and winter they eat weedy seeds such as ragweed and cocklebur as well as native sunflowers and waste grains.

The Red-winged Blackbirds ate our seeds in spring but I didn’t see them much in June and July. Is this visitor telling me it’s fall in bird world?