Shiny Cowbird

Molothrus bonariensis

Order

PASSERIFORMES

Family

Blackbirds (Icteridae)

Code 4

SHCO

Code 6

MOLBON

ITIS

Egg Color:

White to blue or pink with brown and gray marks



Number of Eggs:

1



Incubation Days:

11 - 12



Egg Incubator:

Female



Nest Location:

Uses nests of other species.



Nest Material:

Uses nests of other species.



Migration:

Migratory



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General

Shiny Cowbird: Small blackbird with purple sheen on head, back and breast. Eyes are dark. Female is brown overall with faint or no streaks. Juvenile resembles female but has streaked underparts.

Range and Habitat

Shiny Cowbird: This bird is primarily a South American species; it spread through the West Indies, where it is still a resident species, and arrived in southern Florida in 1985. Today, it occurs casually throughout the southeast from Texas to North Carolina. Occurs accidentally from Oklahoma, Maine, to Maritimes.

Breeding and Nesting

Shiny Cowbird: Nest parasite that lays one white to light blue or pink egg per nest in nests of other species. Incubation ranges from 11 to 12 days and is carried out by the host species.

Foraging and Feeding

Shiny Cowbird: Eats insects and seeds; forages on the ground.

Vocalization

Shiny Cowbird: Series of bold musical bubbling warbles, sometimes interspersed with harsher piercing whistled notes and often followed by trills. Call is a harsh series of notes.

Similar Species

Shiny Cowbird: Brown-headed Cowbird has a glossy brown head; female is plain gray-brown.

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UnderpartsX

Belly, undertail coverts, chest, flanks, and foreneck.

BreastX
The upper front part of a bird.
Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X