Red-winged Blackbird Male on a May Morning

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Red-winged Blackbird, Cocklebur and a fence postRed-winged Blackbird, Cocklebur and a fence post – Nikon D500, f10, 1/500, ISO 320, -0.3 EV, Nikkor 500mm VR with 1.4x TC, natural light

Yesterday I posted Yellow-headed Blackbird portraits and today I am posting some simple Red-winged Blackbird photos taken the same day but they were taken a couple of miles away in Davis County, Utah.

Yellow-headed Blackbirds are slightly larger than Red-winged Blackbirds and they are aggressive towards Red-winged Blackbirds and will take over nesting territories from the Red-winged Blackbirds. They both like the same kind of habitat for nesting so that can lead to aerial fights between the two species.

I thought it was interesting that there was a cocklebur on the fence post next to the feet of this Red-winged Blackbird since just last week I photographed a Snowy Egret with a common cocklebur stuck in its feathers at Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge and it was the first time that I know I had an image with a bird and a cocklebur in it.

The Red-winged Blackbird may have flown to the fence post with the cocklebur in its bill, I did see it poke at a few times then knock it off of the fence post.

Singing male Red-winged Blackbird on a May morningSinging male Red-winged Blackbird on a May morning – Nikon D500, f10, 1/500, ISO 320, -0.3 EV, Nikkor 500mm VR with 1.4x TC, natural light

Even though it is late May there are still male Red-winged Blackbirds displaying and singing their little hearts out here in northern Utah and that is what this male blackbird was doing.

Red-winged Blackbirds are plentiful in the marshes that surround the Great Salt Lake and it is a delight to hear them singing, see them flying and to photograph them as they go about their business of just being a bird.

Life is good.



  1. Patty Chadwick May 30, 2017 at 4:47 pm

    These birds arrive in the spring with grackles and starlings, mob our feeders then take off for swampy areas—that have the reeds they like to hang out in. The showy males seem to come ahead of their heavily striped females…can always tell the males by their beautiful red and yellow shoulder patches and their “conckaree” call….

  2. Utahbooklover May 30, 2017 at 2:42 pm

    Great images and interesting info; and I love to hear the bird-songs. Thanks!

  3. Elephants Child May 30, 2017 at 2:17 pm

    They are incredibly beautiful birds. I doubt that I will ever see them for myself, and am sooooo grateful for your images (and informative posts).

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