Tricolored Blackbird

Agelaius tricolor




Blackbirds (Icteridae)

Code 4


Code 6



Egg Color:

Pale blue green eggs with fine dark lines or spots

Number of Eggs:

3 - 4

Incubation Days:

11 - 13

Egg Incubator:


Nest Location:

0 - 6 feet above ground., Attached to vegetation.

Nest Material:

Lined with fine grasses., Grass, Mud, Leaves


Some migrate



Tricolored Blackbird: Medium-sized blackbird that is mostly black with a glossy blue tint overall. Shoulder patches are bright red and bordered with white. Female and juvenile have thickly brown-streaked upperparts and breasts, brown bellies and undertails, and pale eyebrows.

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.

Breeding and Nesting

Tricolored Blackbird: Three to four pale blue-green eggs with fine dark lines or spots are laid in a deep cup nest woven from grass, leaves, and mud, lined with fine grass, and bound to plant stems up to 6 feet above the water or ground. Incubation ranges from 11 to 13 days and is carried out by the female.

Foraging and Feeding

Tricolored Blackbird: Feeds on a variety of insects, other invertebrates, and seeds. Forages and roosts in large flocks in winter.

Readily Eats

Cracked Corn, Nut Meats, Suet, Millet


Tricolored Blackbird: Song is a harsh, low gurgle "on-ke-kaaangh." Call is "check."

Similar Species

Tricolored Blackbird: Red-winged Blackbird has a yellow, not white, shoulder patch border.

Back, rump, hindneck, wings, and crown.
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