Red-Winged Black birds have got to be some of the most interesting birds in our ponds and marsh area. Their cheery ka-ker--cheee calls fill the early morning air, and their flights as they patrol the marsh are amazingly acrobatic.
The males love to sit in top of higher objects, at least higher than the rest of the marsh, and so often we see them sitting as the image shows – on top of a cat-tail or in the top branch of an old snag in a dead tree. The females prefer to stay lower, as they search for food and a good place to nest.
The other day we witnessed a territorial display as a male Red-Wing did the hunched shoulders display (showing off his bright red wing bars) while singing a call that at once attracts a mate, and lets other males know this is his spot. We even see them chase crows and other much larger birds away from “their” area!
The marsh is full of the sounds of these colourful birds, as we seem to have several nesting here this year, although it’s hard to tell because the nests are low, and the females stay hidden while the males, who we can see, can have up to 5 females as “partners”.
I do enjoy seeing the Red-Winged Blackbirds here.
It means summer has arrived!