About us: We own the Wild Birds Unlimited nature shop in East Lansing, Michigan,
a store that provides a wide variety of supplies to help you enjoy the birdwatching hobby.

This blog was created to answer frequently asked questions & to share nature stories and photographs.
To contribute, email me at bloubird@gmail.com.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Orange you glad to see me? Orioles arrive in Michigan!

Have an oriole at my hummingbird feeder. What do I feed it?
The vibrant orange-and-black pattern of the male Baltimore Oriole adds a lot of color to our landscape in the spring and summer. This neotropical migrant is already here and impressing a lot of people in mid-Michigan.

Male Baltimore Orioles arrive in late April and early May, and feed mostly on the nectar of tree flowers until the caterpillar and insect population grow. Orioles adore fruit and nectar, so they can be attracted with orange halves, grape jelly and sugar water in oriole or hummingbird feeders. They also will eat mealworms, suet, nuts and seed cylinders.

Females arrived about a week later, and begin nest-building almost immediately. Courtship displays by the male consist of bowing, to show off the bright orange front and black back, and singing. Once paired, the female builds a woven tear drop shaped nest that hangs from the end of elm, maple, willow, or apple branches, twenty-five to thirty feet above the ground.

As long as you live near an open woodlot with these mature trees for nesting, you should see and hear these birds often until they migrate back down south beginning at the end of June.

Related Articles:  
- Why they were named Baltimore Orioles http://goo.gl/eN1Im5
- Facts on the Baltimore Oriole http://bit.ly/GzSTbi 
- Where do orioles winter? http://bit.ly/GAeWv5 
- Close-up of Baltimore Oriole http://bit.ly/GAf6T7 
- Favorite Oriole feeders http://t.co/OjG4Lz4

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