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, June 24, 2014

Red oriole in Michigan

I just saw an oriole that was different from my normal orange orioles. It looked something like a blend between a robin and oriole. Maybe he just ate something to make him darker? - St. Johns, MI

Darker than a Baltimore Oriole, breeding Orchard Oriole males have dark orange or brick red bodies and a black hood, back and wings. The wings also have chestnut epaulets and a white wing bar and tips.

Photo from Wikimedia Commons
Once seen mainly in fruit orchards, more and more Orchard Orioles have been seen venturing to feeders since orchards are now heavily sprayed and manicured.

Orchard Orioles spend summers in open woodlands and areas of scattered trees across the eastern United States and southern Canada. Look for them along river edges, in pastures with scattered trees, and in parks.

Orchard Orioles are relatively easygoing toward each other or other bird species, nesting in close quarters with Baltimore Orioles, Bullock’s Orioles, Eastern Kingbirds, Western Kingbirds, American Robins, and Chipping Sparrows. The aggressive kingbirds may be useful neighbors because they ward off predators and cowbirds (which lay their eggs in the nests of other birds).
Related Articles:
- There are two oriole species found in Michigan http://goo.gl/mOugo7
- Where do orioles winter? http://bit.ly/GAeWv5
- Close-up of Baltimore Oriole http://bit.ly/GAf6T7
- When can I expect my orioles to arrive? http://goo.gl/OHrCc