Springtime male Red-winged Blackbird at Farmington Bay

Red-winged Blackbird maleRed-winged Blackbird male – Nikon D300, f8, 1/800, ISO 500, +0.3 EV, Nikkor 200-400mm VR with 1.4x TC at 400mm, natural light, not baited or called in

Yesterday morning’s sunny weather felt lovely compared to Sunday which was gray, windy, rainy and snowy and maybe this male Red-winged Blackbird was feeling the difference in weather too. Farmington Bay Waterfowl Management Area is a wonderful place to find Red-winged Blackbirds along the road to Goose Egg Island. Yesterday the males were visible and displaying from the tops of cattails and phragmites while the females were less visible.

Male Red-winged Blackbird at Farmington Bay WMAMale Red-winged Blackbird at Farmington Bay WMA – Nikon D300, f6.3, 1/1250, ISO 500, +0.3 EV, Nikkor 200-400mm VR with 1.4x TC at 400mm, natural light, not baited or called in

Red-winged Blackbirds are probably the most studied songbird in North America and they are found throughout Canada, the U.S., Mexico and Central America. The males are easily identifiable for even novice bird watchers with their flashy red and yellow epaulets and sleek black plumage.

These blackbirds are a delight to the eyes and ears.


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About Mia McPherson

I am a nature lover, wildlife watcher and a bird photographer. I first become serious about bird photography when I moved to Florida in 2004 and it wasn’t long before I was hooked (addicted is more like it). My move to the Salt Lake area of Utah was a great opportunity to continue observing their behavior and to pursue my passion for photographing birds.


  1. Our redwings are displaying as well. We’ve had reports of a yellow-headed blackbird in the area as well, but I’ve dipped on that one so far. Love the grace with which they can sit on the reeds and your photos capturing this!

  2. Wonderful photos of one of my favorite birds.

  3. Great shots! I was sitting outside (IN THE SUN!!!! ) for a little while today, a soft breeze and songs of Spring all around me…among them was a Blue Jay that sounds like a baby chick, another that sounds like a gull, a Cardinal calling himself “pretty, pretty, pretty” and a Red winged Blackbird, singing “Conkareee” at the top of his little lungs. It was fun to close my eyes and identify the various birds just by their song. I felt as happy as they sounded.

  4. Such a glossy little charmer – thank you.

  5. Jane Chesebrough

    Now that’s a sign of spring! Handsome, he looks like he is smiling.

  6. Wonderful.. Love the glint in the eye..

  7. I especially like the first image. I just learned from my Kaufman Field Guide that central California has a “Bicolored Red-wing” with shoulder patches that can be all red. Our red and yellow patched blackbirds are also easy to find around the Bear River Wildlife Refuge.

  8. He is a beauty … and I love their songs!!!! Great captures, as always!!

  9. One of my favorite Spring birds, after the Meadowlark that is. Beautiful shots, Mia.

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