Redwinged Blackbird Pictures, taken at Horn Pond in Woburn, MA.
Ah yes, another bird where the female and male colorations vary substantially! The male red-winged blackbird is pretty well described by name alone. This blackbird is between 7.5-9.5 inches tall (slightly bigger than a Robin). It has red patches with a yellow tip on it's shoulders. Sometimes these patches are hidden by body feathers depending on the stance of the bird. The female however is a brown bird with lots of streaking on it's body. It's tummy is a dirty white color with brown streaking. Sometimes the females have a small red tinge on their wings and chin. Male birds look similarly to females until their second year, when their feathers turn standard male black.
The red-winged blackbird is found commonly throughout North America. They are commonly found in marshes and weedy areas, farmlands and open fields. They are known to be aggressive birds in defending their nests and surroundings.They also nest in these areas, either in the dense grass on the ground or in bushes or trees. Red winged blackbirds have 2-3 broods a season. Babies stay in the nest for up to 2 weeks. Sadly because these birds often nest in dense grasses, their nests are lost due to humans mowing areas down.
These birds are also quite chatty. They often travel and live in flocks or colonies. They eat seed, berries, insects, snails and spiders.