Orchard Oriole

This species is 6.3 inches long and weighs 20 g. The bill is pointed and black with some blue-gray at the base of the lower mandible . The adult male of the nominate subspecies has chestnut on the underparts, shoulder, and rump, with the rest of the plumage black. In the subspecies I. s. fuertesi, the chestnut is replaced with ochre . The adult female and the juvenile of both subspecies have olive-green on the upper parts and yellowish on the breast and belly. All adults have pointed bills and white wing bars. One-year-old males are yellow-greenish with a black bib.

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The Orchard Oriole is classified as Least Concern. Does not qualify for a more at risk category. Widespread and abundant taxa are included in this category.

The Orchard Oriole, Icterus spurius, is the smallest North American species of icterid blackbird. The subspecies of the Caribbean coast of Mexico, I. s. fuertesi, is sometimes considered a separate species, the Ochre Oriole. More

The smallest North American oriole, the Orchard Oriole is found nesting in shade trees along streams, rivers and lakes, and on farms and parklands. The rich chestnut color of the adult male can be so dark that he may appear all black before you get your binoculars on him. More

Nominate Orchard Orioles depart from their winter habitats in March and April and arrive in their breeding habitats from late April to late May. Usually, they leave their breeding territories in late July and early August and arrive on their winter territories in mid August. These birds are nocturnal migrants. Food - While in breeding season, they eat insects and spiders. When the season changes, their diet also includes ripe fruit, which quickly passes through their digestive tract. More

Orchard Orioles spend most of the year on their wintering grounds in Central America and northwestern South America. Northbound migrants leave the wintering grounds in March and begin arriving in the southern United States as early as late March, reaching the northern parts of their range by mid- to late May. Some migrants journey across the Gulf of Mexico. Orchard Orioles spend only enough time on the breeding grounds to raise a single brood before beginning their southward migration. More

Orchard Orioles are widely distributed breeders east of the Rocky Mountains that show a distinct preference for riparian zones, floodplains, marshes, shorelines of rivers and lakes. Interestingly enough, they also often nest in shade trees, open fields with scattered shrubs and trees and even orchards. The Orchard Oriole is the smallest oriole in North America. They are related to such familiar birds as the Red-winged Blackbird and Eastern Meadowlark. More

The Orchard Oriole has a large range reaching up to 4,800,000 square kilometers. This bird can be found in the United States, Venezuela, Bahamas, Belize, Canada, Cayman Islands, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Turks and Caicos Islands. It inhabits both subtropical and tropical forests, savannas and plantations. The global population of this bird is estimated to be around 4,300,000 individuals. More

The Orchard Oriole is a small species of blackbird loosely territorial and a bit solitary. In areas of dense nesting, such as urban areas, one tree may contain multiple Orchard Oriole nests. More

themselves, Orchard Orioles begin moving south, as early as mid-July. During migration they may be found in a wide variety of open habitats, but avoiding coniferous woodlands and forests with closed canopies. Unlike most songbirds, which undergo a molt before leaving the breeding grounds, molt is suppressed in Orchard Orioles until they arrive at their tropical lowland winter home. Once there, they forage and roost in flocks that can number in the hundreds. More

These same studies have shown that Orchard Orioles who are victims of cowbird parasitism only successfully fledge half as many Orchard Oriole nestlings as do nests that aren't parasitized. See photos at the bottom of the page for a male Orchard Oriole feeding a Brown-headed Cowbird fledgling. Bird Feeders: Will drink sugar-water from feeders, also will come for fruit. More

The Orchard Oriole is often found in riparian areas and along shorelines. It is sometimes described as a semi colonial nester because nests within different territories can be quite close together. There is little evidence for winter territoriality in Orchard Orioles, and many individuals often roost together at night during winter months. Orchard Oriole nests are often parasitized by Brown-headed Cowbirds, and only half as many Orchard Oriole young are fledged from parasitized nests as from unparasitized nests. More

Although the orchard oriole is not as common and well known as the Baltimore oriole, it is not uncommon in much of Ohio. Likewise, these birds are not as conspicuous as the brilliant orange Baltimore. More

3 inches (16cm) in length the Orchard Oriole is the smallest bird in the icterid family. Adult males are black with chestnut colored underparts. Females are olive-green with yellowish underparts. Orchard Orioles breed from southern parts of Canada to northern Florida, the Gulf coast, Texas and central Mexico. In winter they migrate to Central American and northwestern South America. More

A very rare visitor, this female Orchard Oriole was seen eating at the peanut butter cake. As they are lover of sweets, she assuredly enjoyed these maple syrup sweetened peanut butter cakes. They are also particularly fond of fruit-tree blossoms and flowers. Orchard Orioles are known to spend as little time as possible in their breeding grounds. The leave in such a hurry that young birds arrive in Central America still in juvenile plumage. Cornell has some very interesting information about Orchard Orioles. More

Picture of Icterus spurius above has been licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike.
Original source: Original uploader was Badjoby at en.wikipedia
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Order : Passeriformes
Family : Icteridae
Genus : Icterus
Species : spurius
Authority : (Linnaeus, 1766)