Saturday, May 12, 2012

A New Yard Bird

WESTERN TANAGER - Piranga ludoviciana
We had a new bird visitor to our yard yesterday morning - a handsome male Western Tanager. This is the first time we've seen this species in our yard, so it's a new one for our Yard List.

Mr. Western Tanager is eye-catching and colorful in breeding plumage. He is bright yellow with a red head and black tail. The wings are black with two wing bars. Females are a dull yellow with greyish-green back and darker wings.

Western Tanagers are migrants here in the desert. They winter from Baja and Central Mexico to Costa Rica, then head north in spring for their nesting grounds in coniferous forests of western North America.

Western Tanagers eat insects, fruit and nectar. We'll be putting out some extra oranges and bananas at the feeders to help him on his journey north.

These pics were taken from a distance of about 30 feet away, and through the sliding glass door.

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