Red-winged Blackbird (Agelaius phoeniceus)

redwinged blackbird

redwinged blackbird

redwinged blackbird

female redwinged blackbird

Female Redwing Blackbird

molting juvenile redwinged blackbird
molting juvenile male

Information: A common bully at the bird feeder they use very intelligent and highly inventive ways of chasing other birds off the feeder in order to take it over. I often see two or three fly in make loud noises (which indicate distress) and fly away from the feeder, all the other birds seem to see this as a warning danger is near. As soon as the other birds fly off they all calmly perch and feed. The red-winged blackbird is one of the most abundant birds in America.

Identification: The fully dressed male is difficult to confuse with other birds however, both the juveniles and females look strikingly similar until the first molt process when they lose their feathers and show either the female or male plumage. In our area in wetlands you may run into the tricolored blackbird which looks much like this guy except that instead of yellow under the red shoulder patch it’s white.

Cornell’s page on Red-winged Blackbirds


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