Indigo Bunting

Emily White

Indigo Bunting
If you have never seen the Indigo Bunting then I know your first sighting will be exciting. While this is probably not a common bird in most people’s backyard, it is a bird that can be seen with a little effort.
The colour of these little birds is spectacular. The male’s bright blue plumage appears almost iridescent. The male is usually the only indigo noticed as the female is a light brown bird with faint markings. The juveniles are similar to the female. What you might not know is that they are actually little finches and are approximately 5 ˝ inches in size.

They migrate at night using the stars to guide them. These small bright birds make their way to Southern Canada from Central and South America, and settle in woodland edges and farmlands to nest in the spring and summer. The females do most of the feeding and caring for the young, while the male defends the nest against intruders. Once the young have fledged the males will teach them to forage while the female is busy building a new nest for the next brood. Together each pair will raise as many as three broods.
Indigos like a variety of food, including grass seeds, berries, spiders and insects. Normally they forage on the ground and in low foliage for their food sources. Indigos are often seen briefly at backyard feeders in the spring before insects are available. Typical sightings are at feeders offering nyjer seed, white millet or hulled sunflower seed. Try offering these seeds along with a water source and you might be amazed at what you see at your feeder next time you look out your window.
Try the Onyx Clever Clean Nyjer Feeder. This handsome new finch feeder has unique flower-design nyjer seed ports surrounded by metal to prevent squirrel damage. The feeding ports are not placed opposite each other which allows for unimpeded seed flow and truly easy cleaning. The clever twist off base allows you to dump chaff or debris each time you fill your feeder.

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