Preening Brewer’s Blackbird

Preening Brewer's BlackbirdPreening Brewer’s Blackbird – Nikon D810, f8, 1/1000, ISO 500, +0.7 EV, Nikkor 500mm VR with 1.4x TC, natural light, not baited

I have been seeing plenty of blackbirds lately at Farmington Bay WMA and a few days ago I photographed this preening Brewer’s Blackbird on a fence post. This male appeared less colorful than the other males nearby, in fact he seemed rather drab compared to them. According to Sibley’s Guide to Birds drab males are rare and this one sure didn’t look like the normal, glossy males that I am used to seeing. Then again this might be a hatch year male who hasn’t fully developed its adult plumage yet.

I always scan the flocks of blackbirds hoping to find a Rusty Blackbird because they are uncommon and it would be a lifer for me.

Yesterday I photographed a male preening in a Russian Olive and I hope to post one of those images soon. I really liked how the elliptical leaves framed him but I didn’t have time to process any of those images last night.

Brewer’s Blackbirds are common and widespread and can be found any where from parking lots in cities, farm fields and in wide open areas where they feed on seeds and insects. I wouldn’t exactly say their call is lovely, to me it sounds more like a squeaky swing on a child’s playground set.

Still, I do think these blackbirds are lovely and because they are a challenge to expose correctly I enjoy photographing them every chance I get.

Life is good.



  1. Lois Bryan November 1, 2014 at 10:07 pm

    fabulous capture of this beauty !!

  2. Elephant's Child October 31, 2014 at 1:59 pm

    Our blackbirds have yellow beaks to match their eyes. And I have a weakness for all of the black birds, and animals…

  3. Jolanta October 31, 2014 at 12:04 pm

    Nice bird and beautiful photo 🙂

  4. Chris Rohrer October 31, 2014 at 11:53 am

    One of my favorite birds Mia. I think it’s the yellow eyes that get me everytime:)

  5. Patty Chadwick October 31, 2014 at 8:53 am

    Your format has changed…do you know that??? Is it OK with you????

  6. Patty Chadwick October 31, 2014 at 8:51 am

    I think he needs a comb…or brush. I raised a Rusty Blackbird years ago…I was told it couldn’t be a Rusty Blackbird (too rare around here), but that’s what he turned out to be…

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