Indigo Bunting

Passerina cyanea

Order

PASSERIFORMES

Family

Cardinals and Grosbeaks (Cardinalidae)

Code 4

INBU

Code 6

PASCYA

ITIS

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ILLUSTRATION

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PHOTOS

CONSERVATION STATUS

Least Concern

The Indigo Bunting is rated as Least Concern at this time. The range of the Indigo Bunting is approximately 6 million square kilometers. The population of this bird species is about 28 million individual birds. The prior rating for the Indigo Bunting was Lower Risk. That rating was downgraded to Least Concern in 2004. The Indigo Bunting is native to numerous countries throughout the Caribbean as well as Central America and North America. It is also a visitor to countries in Europe as well. There are no threats facing the population of the Indigo Bunting at this time.

IBIRD EXPLORER GENERAL

PHOTO SHARING AND DISCUSSION

BIRD PHOTOGRAPHY

SUMMARY

Overview

Indigo Bunting: Small finch with brilliant, almost iridescent, blue plumage. Crown is darker blue with a purple tint. Wings and tail are black with blue edges. Feeds on insects, larvae, grains, seeds, berries. Short flights low over vegetation, alternates rapid wing beats with wings pulled to sides.


Range and Habitat

Indigo Bunting: Breeds from southeastern Saskatchewan east to New Brunswick, and south to central Arizona, central Texas, the Gulf coast, and northern Florida. Spends winters in southern Florida and in the tropics. Preferred habitats include brushy slopes, old pastures and fields grown to scrub, woodland clearings, and forest edges adjacent to fields.

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SONGS AND CALLS

Voice Text

"sweet-sweet, sweeter-sweeter, here-here"

INTERESTING FACTS

  • Indigo Buntings are actually black; the diffraction of light through their feathers makes them look blue. This explains why males can appear many shades from turquoise to black.
  • They are more common now than when the pilgrims first landed. This is due to an increase in their favorite habitat of woodland edges, such as power line clearings and along roads.
  • They migrate at night, using the pattern of stars nearest the North Star to guide them. In captivity, these birds will become disoriented if they can’t see the stars in April/May and September/October.
  • A group of buntings are collectively known as a "decoration", "mural", and "sacrifice" of buntings.

SIMILAR BIRDS

RANGE MAP

CERange Map for Indigo Bunting

FAMILY DESCRIPTION

TERMINOLOGY

CREDITS

Author

Gary Owen Dick

Artist

Yury Lisyak

HELP ME IDENTIFY A BIRD

BACKYARD BIRDING

BIRDS AND BIRDING

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CrownX
The crown is the top part of the birds head.
Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X