Rose-Breasted Grosbeak and Indigo Bunting Migration
During this time of year we are lucky to have two very special seasonal feathered friends in our area - the Rose-Breasted Grosbeak and the Indigo Bunting. We are getting many reports in the store about seeing these beautiful migrants at feeders in the area. We'd love to hear your stories about seeing these interesting characters!
The Rose-Breasted Grosbeak stays only a short time, usually in May, before heading to the mountains of further north. The male is hard to miss with his striking plumage including signature splash of red on his breast, but the female is much more demure in her "outfit". They are known for singing through moonlit nights - though thankfully not very loudly! When visiting feeders, Rose-Breasted Grosbeaks prefer sunflower, safflower, and peanuts.
The Indigo Bunting may stick around for longer periods of time than the Rose-Breasted Grosbeak. Though they look beautifully blue, the male Indigo Bunting's feathers are actually black! His feathers are structured so that light hitting them is diffracted in such a way as to make the feathers appear blue. When migrating, Indigo Buntings are known to travel at night and use the stars to navigate. Their favorite habitat is woodland edge, and being mainly insectivores they love mealworm feeders - though they also will feed at finch feeders.