Saturday, May 24, 2014

Rose-breasted Grosbeak

Spend a little time at the edge of a forest and you are likely to hear a Rose-breasted Grosbeak.  

The spring migration is in full swing and thousands upon thousands of birds are now passing through Wisconsin.

Follow the sound to the middle level of the trees and you could see a black and white bird if viewed from the back…

…or a rosy-breasted white bird from the front.

A coal-black head with the tiniest of highlights in the eyes complete the color palette of the male Rose-breasted Grosbeak.

The male Rose-breasted Grosbeak is looking for a mate at this time of year and he is not shy about singing out his presence. Rose-breasted Grosbeaks sound similar to Robins, but are much more musical.  

Look up even when you think the song is just another Robin. You could be hearing a Rose-breasted Grosbeak.

The females are passing through, too, but they are a bit more secretive, softer spoken and far less flashy.  

The effort it takes to discover a new bird is miniscule, but the reward can be immense.


Cornell Lab of Ornithology
The Sibley Guide to Birds