Blue bird

Blue bird

There are three different Blue bird species, the Eastern blue bird, the Western blue bird and the Mountain blue bird. They are all medium-sized birds belonging to the genus Sialia in the family Turdidae. Unlike most other genera in the family Turdidae, the genus Sialia is restricted to the Americas and Blue birds can therefore only be found in this part of the world.

The Eastern blue bird, Sialia sialis, is found in North and Central America. It inhabits semi-open country across America, subtropical and tropical moist mountainous forests and shrub lands at a high altitude and is also frequently spotted in farmlands and orchards. This blue bird species is native to Canada, Saint-Pierre and Miquelon (a French overseas community near Newfoundland), the United States, Cuba, Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, El Salvador, Honduras and Nicaragua.

The Western blue bird, Sialia mexicana, has a geographical range restricted to Canada, the United States and Mexico. It lives in semi-open landscapes across western part of the North American continent, but it can not survive in deserts. Northern blue birds of this species migrate south during the winter and returns to the northern parts of the range to breed during the summer season. Southern birds will typically stay in the same region 12 months a year. 

The Mountain blue bird, Sialia currucoides, lives in North America and despite its name it is not only found in mountain areas. It appreciates temperate forests and grasslands. The Mountain blue bird lives in Canada, Saint-Pierre and Miquelon (a French overseas community near Newfoundland), the United States and Mexico.
Northern birds will migrate to the southern parts of the range during the winter season, and return up north to breed during the warm season. Southern birds are usually non-migratory.

The physical characteristic varies between the three species of Blue bird, but they are all brightly coloured birds with blue, or blue and red, plumage. The female Blue bird tends to be somewhat less strikingly coloured than the male Blue bird. Both sexes are of roughly the same size.

Blue birds are territorial and the male Blue birds are responsible for locating suitable nests.

The Blue bird will build its nest inside some form of cavity, e.g. a discarded woodpecker hole in a tree. When the male Blue bird has claimed a cavity, he will try to catch the attention of female Blue birds by singing and flapping his wings. He will also gather some building material and place it inside the cavity. When a female Blue bird finds a suitable male with a suitable nesting site, she will build the rest of the nest herself inside the cavity. The female will then mate with the male and deposit the eggs in the nest. Only the female Blue bird is responsible for incubating the eggs. A Blue bird couple can produce 2-4 broods during the warm season. Blue birds are known to appreciate man made nesting boxes, so placing a nesting box in a tree is a good idea if you want to attract Blue birds to your garden.

Bird articles:

Blue Bird House
Eastern Blue Bird


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