Juvenile Brown-headed Cowbird perched on Moth Mullein

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Juvenile Brown-headed Cowbird perched on Moth MulleinJuvenile Brown-headed Cowbird perched on Moth Mullein – Nikon D810, f8, 1/640, ISO 400, Nikkor 500mm VR with 1.4x TC, natural light

Smoke from the wildfires to the west of Utah filled the Salt Lake Valley yesterday but that didn’t stop me from going to Antelope Island State Park to see what birds could be found. I saw several different species of raptors which encouraged me because I haven’t seen many of them on the island for some time.

But I wanted to post an image of a juvenile Brown-headed Cowbird today because despite their bad reputations as brood parasites they are native birds that I think are worth pointing my lens at. These are “Buffalo Birds” that historically used to follow the herds of bison around on grassy plains and they would eat the insects the bison stirred up. I still see that behavior today on Antelope Island, I saw it yesterday.

They are not the most colorful birds but interesting just the same.

Life is good.



  1. Larry Muench August 17, 2015 at 3:15 pm

    Beautiful capture. I love the simplicity, colors and pose. Sharp!

  2. Elephant's Child August 17, 2015 at 1:24 pm

    I have a weakness for the little brown jobs. I think their subtle monochromatic magic is often overlooked.
    Thank you.

  3. April Olson August 17, 2015 at 9:56 am

    I have a cow bird question for you that I often ask and have not found the answer. If cow birds are often raised by another species then why do they not inprint on that species and have difficulty finding cow bird mate?

  4. Rick Wright August 17, 2015 at 9:08 am

    Beautiful image of one of North America’s most fascinating birds. Love cowbirds! Here’s an interesting note about the species and its evolutionary history:

  5. Stu Megan August 17, 2015 at 8:42 am

    I was looking for the phrase to use. I think Nancy says it best… You have managed to capture its beauty!.. Mia-nificent 🙂

  6. Patty Chadwick August 17, 2015 at 7:11 am

    I find subtle colors soothing…love the composition and the contrasting textures….

  7. Bob Mcpherson August 17, 2015 at 5:38 am

    As usual, outstanding picture

  8. Nancy Collins August 17, 2015 at 5:25 am

    Mia you have captured its beauty! Lovely!

Comments are closed.