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Orchard Oriole

From Opus

Photo © by steve messickCrow Valley Recreational Area, Weld County Colorado, May 2004
Photo © by steve messick
Crow Valley Recreational Area, Weld County Colorado, May 2004
Icterus spurius

Includes: Ochre Oriole


[edit] Identification

FemalePhoto © by bobsofpaFort DeSoto Park, Florida, USA, April 2008
Photo © by bobsofpa
Fort DeSoto Park, Florida, USA, April 2008

15–17 cm (6-6½ in)
Males are bright chestnut underneath, while the head, back, tail, and wings are black; a thin straight bill.
Females and immatures are olive-green above with two white wing-bars and yellowish underparts; immature males have a dark throat.

[edit] Similar Species

Female/young Hooded Orioles can be quite similar, but notice they have a slimmer, longer, more decurved bill and a graduated tail.

[edit] Distribution

First Year MalePhoto © by tetoneonNorthwest New Jersey, June 2011
First Year Male
Photo © by tetoneon
Northwest New Jersey, June 2011

Eastern United States from eastern Montana and eastern New Mexico east and north to southern Michigan, central New York, and Massachusetts south into central Mexico; absent from southern Florida. Recent results suggest that at least part of the US population after having bred in early parts of summer migrates to north-western Mexico where a second round of breeding takes place.

Winters in Central America south to Colombia and Venezuela. Rare to casual vagrant in western United States.

[edit] Taxonomy

[edit] Subspecies

Male, subspecies spuriusPhoto © by Stanley JonesAnahuac National Wildlife Refuge, Chambers County, Texas, USA, April 2018
Male, subspecies spurius
Photo © by Stanley Jones
Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge, Chambers County, Texas, USA, April 2018

Two subspecies accepted[1]:

  • I. s. spurius:
  • I. s. fuertesi:
  • Caribbean coast of Mexico (mainly Veracruz), winters on Pacific coast straight S of breeding area, and possibly other places

fuertesi is sometimes split as full species, Ochre Oriole or Fuerte's Oriole.

[edit] Habitat

Open woodland, trees along streams, rivers and lakes, and on farms and parklands. Avoids dense woodland.

[edit] Behaviour

[edit] Diet

Their main diet consists of insects such as flies and ants, with the addition of berries and nectar; also flower parts.

[edit] Breeding

They construct a deep, hanging cup nest, from grass fibres. It is hidden within dense foliage, often in a cluster of trees. The young fledge 11 to 14 days after hatching.

[edit] Vocalisation

Song: a musical chirping warble. Best heard in the spring soon after the male arrives.

[edit] References

  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2017. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: v2017, with updates to August 2017. Downloaded from
  2. Paper describing migration to second breeding area
  3. Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive (retrieved June 2017)
  4. Wikipedia

[edit] External Links


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