Blackbirds are common throughout Michigan, but they don’t usually nest near humans. They build their nests in trees or shrubs and often perch on telephone wires.
Blackbirds are medium-sized songbirds native to North America. They are known for their loud, repetitive songs.
Blackbirds are omnivores, feeding on insects, seeds, berries, worms, snails, frogs, and other invertebrates.
They are also very social animals. The blackbird family consists of over 30 species, some of which migrate long distances.
Today, we’re going to be going through the most popular species of blackbirds in Michigan in a guide suited to outlining how amazing these birds are and how unique they are to Michigan.
Overall Descriptions of Blackbirds
The blackbird is a small bird with an average length of about and weighs around. It has a stocky body and short legs.
Its plumage is mostly dark gray, with a white rump, wings, tail, head, throat, and breast. Their beak is yellowish-orange and the eyes are brown.
The male blackbird’s voice is a series of high-pitched notes that can last up to two minutes.
Each note is repeated at least five times, and each time it gets slightly higher. This makes them sound like they are singing all day long.
There are 25 different species of blackbirds found in North America. Twelve of these are seen in Michigan, including Blackbird, Osprey, Meadowlark, Cowbird, Grackle, Bobolink, and Turkey Vulture.
Three of these species are rare or accidental, and two of these are also threatened or vulnerable.
Male and female blackbirds can differ greatly in size and color. Males are usually larger than females, and some male blackbirds have bright colors while others are duller or even grayish.
Blackbirds may build nests or not. Cowbirds (which are actually not related to birds) lay their eggs in other birds’ nests for the host family.
Oriole nests hang from trees and are made of twigs, moss, grasses, hair, feathers, and mud.
Bird nests are often built by both parents. Blackbirds are migratory birds that are seen throughout the year.
There are several types of these birds that are found in Michigan. The most common ones are the American Robin, Brown Thrasher, Eastern Meadowlark, Field Sparrow, Northern Mockingbird, Song Sparrow, White-winged Dove, and Yellow Warbler.
Red-winged blackbirds are a common sight in our yard. European starlings eat insects and seeds while they’re eating grass.
Common grackles are noisy birds that often fly around the house.
The red-winged blackbird is an insectivorous songbird. It is commonly found throughout North America.
It is often seen near water or along roadsides. It breeds in the northern regions of Canada and the United States.
This species migrates south in winter. There are two subspecies of the red-winged blackbirds.
The nominate race occurs in the north, while the other race occurs in the southern part of the continent.
They’re not native, but they’re here! European starlings are common birds that don’t migrate.
They’re found in 29% of checklists submitted in summer, and 20% of checklists submitted during winter. They’re stocky blackbirds with bright colors.
Their length is 7.9 – 9.1 inches (20 – 23 centimeters), and their weight is 2.1 – 3.4 ounces (60 – 96 grams). Starling birds are very aggressive, and they are known to cause trouble by eating crops.
Their wingspan is about 15 inches (40 cm) long. They do eat bugs, but mostly they eat fruits and vegetables. Starlings are noisy birds that love to eat insects.
Brown-headed cowbirds lay eggs in other birds’ nests. Brown-headed cowbirds are migratory birds that migrate north for the winter. Males are larger than females and have longer wingspans.
They are black-bodied with a brown head and a shorter tail. Their bodies are streaked gray and brown.
Female brown-headed cowbirds are smaller and have less streaking. They are gray-brown all over, with a slightly lighter underbelly.
Orioles are beautiful songbirds who sing beautifully. Orchard Orioles are birds that come from Australia.
Their colors are yellow and green. Females are smaller than males.
They arrive in April and stay until late August or early September. Orchard Orioles are small birds that migrate south during winter.
They prefer to hang out in open areas, but they also enjoy nesting in trees.
Their diet includes insects, spiders, and other arthropods. They will also feed on fruits and berries.
Orchards are an important part of our lives. They provide us with fruit, berries, nuts, and other delicious foods.
Orchards also protect birds by providing them with homes.
Bobolinks fly low over the ground and sometimes hop into the water. Bobolinks migrate south for the winter.
During the spring, they return north. Males are easily identified by their bright yellow head patches.
Females and non-breeding male bobolinks are brown streaked and with dark eye lines and stripes on their crown.
Bobolinks are birds who sing fast and loud. Their song consists of many notes and sounds that do not follow any particular pattern.
They also make various short peeks and checks. Bobolinks are declining because people cut down the grasses where they breed.
You can help by keeping the grass low to avoid cutting off the nesting areas.
A rusty blackbird is a common backyard bird. Rusty Blackbirds migrate north every year.
Their migration is from March to May and from September to November. In the spring and autumn, the birds are seen mostly in the Midwest region. Males are dark and shiny black, while females are grayish brown.
They have a rustic appearance in winter. Rusty blackbirds are shy creatures who avoid humans.
They prefer to stay away from people. They usually fly around at dusk or dawn. Their wings are rusty colored because they get dirty when feeding.
A hooded oriole is a beautiful oriole. Hanging nests of Hooded Orioles are found on the underside of palm fronds.
These birds migrate south for the winter, and some stay all year in the tropics. Their breeding season is from May to August. Hooded Orioles are birds that live in dry open areas.
Their nests are high up in palm trees. They make a sound similar to a whistle or warble. The male sings a jumble of whistles and warbling notes. The female makes a simple call.
A shiny cowbird lays eggs in another bird’s nest. Shiny cowbirds are mostly found in South America, and they’re mostly black.
Their females are brownish and look like other brownish birds.
They have shiny feathers. They eat insects. They’re mostly found in South America and southern Central America. Shiny cowbirds are birds that eat insects.
A bullock’s oriole is a colorful oriole. Bullock’s Orioles are a rare species of North American birds.
Males are bright orange with black, white, and brown wings and black markings on the head. Females and immature are duller with grayish backs and yellow heads, necks, and chests.
Bullock’s Orioles breed in the western part of the United States and spend the winters in Mexico.
Bullock’s Orioles are a type of songbird found in North America. They eat insects, fruits, and nectar. They make a series of chirps and whistles that last several seconds.
The western meadowlark is a species of bird that lives in North America. This bird has a yellow belly and a black V-shaped band across the chest that turns gray in winter. It is also known as the western meadowlark or western meadowlark.
A western meadowlark is a common songbird. It is about 15 centimeters long and weighs around 0.5 kilograms.
Its wingspan is about 25 centimeters. This species migrates south during winter.
In the summer, it lives in prairies and meadows. It feeds mostly on insects, but also on seeds.
Western meadowlarks are birds that sound very nice. Their songs are twittering, warbling, and whistling.
They have a nest in the ground, and it is usually covered by grass or other plants.
They eat seeds, and you can attract them to your yard with sunflower seeds and crack corn.
Western meadowlarks are birds that eat insects and worms. They migrate from Canada to South America during the winter months. Their song is very loud and beautiful.
Birds are amazing creatures. There are many types of birds. Some are native to Michigan, while others are exotic.
Birds are amazing because they fly and sing.
They are intelligent too. Many people think that birds are dumb animals. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth.
Birds are smart enough to learn how to use tools, and they even know how to play games!