Tricolored Blackbird

Agelaius tricolor

Order

PASSERIFORMES

Family

Blackbirds (Icteridae)

Code 4

TRBL

Code 6

AGETRI

ITIS

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ILLUSTRATION

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PHOTOS

CONSERVATION STATUS

Endangered

The Tricolored Blackbird has a small range, found almost entirely in California. Native to the United States and Mexico, this bird prefers inland wetland ecosystems, though it can live on arable land. The global population of this bird is not quantified but shows a marked and severe decline that necessitates inclusion on the IUCN Red List. For this reason, the current evaluation status of the Tricolored Blackbird is Endangered.

IBIRD EXPLORER GENERAL

PHOTO SHARING AND DISCUSSION

BIRD PHOTOGRAPHY

SUMMARY

Overview

Tricolored Blackbird: Medium-sized blackbird that is mostly black with a glossy blue tint overall. Shoulder patches are bright red and bordered with white. Lives in flocks year round.Feeds on insects, spiders, caterpillars, and seeds from weeds and grains. Strong direct flight on rapid wing beats.


Range and Habitat

Tricolored Blackbird: This species has a limited range and breeds only in California, Oregon, Washington, Nevada, and Baja California. Northern birds migrate to the southern areas of its in winter; California birds are resident. Preferred habitats include annual grasslands, wet and dry vernal pools, and other seasonal wetlands.

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SONGS AND CALLS

Voice Text

"on-ke-kaaangh", "check"

INTERESTING FACTS

  • The Tricolored Blackbird was classified as endangered in 2006 by BirdLife International.
  • In the past decade their population has declined by more than 40%.
  • The majority of their population nest in a small number of large colonies. This is similar to the habits of the Carolina Parakeet, Passenger Pigeon and Great Auk-all extinct colonial breeders.
  • A group of blackbirds has many collective nouns, including a "cloud", "cluster", and "merl" of blackbirds.

SIMILAR BIRDS

RANGE MAP

CERange Map for Tricolored Blackbird

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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ShoulderX
The short feathers overlying the median secondary coverts on the top of the wing. They are located near the back and can be seen as the “first row” of feathers on the birds wing. They are also called marginal coverts and lesser secondary coverts.
Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X