The Blackbird is a common name given to both Old and New
World birds of many genera that are black in coloring.
Most of the North American passerines that are named
Blackbird are very recognizable and well known birds. Well
known families include the Brewer's Blackbird, Red-winged
Blackbird, Yellow-winged Blackbird, and the list goes on.
They are not related to the Old World Blackbirds, which are
On average, the male New World Blackbird is black with dark
brown feet and a yellow bill. In some blackbird families the
males have iridescent feathers. The female is a dark brown
and black but the throat and chest are a reddish brown and
mottled with a dusky coloring. The lower breast and
underneath are blackish and they have a brown bill. Usually
they are on average ten and a half inches long.
The Blackbird is one of the best songbirds and usually can
be heard in the early spring. It sounds like a rich mellow
fluting and is said to be the only songbird that really
forms a musical strain. Sometimes the song of the blackbird
is mistaken for the song of a thrush that has more variation
in it. The Blackbird whistles more than the thrush.
The Blackbird is known to be an alarmist and will actually
follow an intruder into their territory threatening them.
They have a loud alarm call that sounds like a 'tick, tick,
tick' that usually sends other shy animals to ground or
cover. They also will do the same at night flying from tree
These birds are seen all over the United States particularly
in the country near swamps, ponds and lakes. Blackbirds tend
to flock together in very large groups, especially in
breeding and nesting season. They eat seeds, causing
distress to farmers, and insects, providing a benefit to
farmers. Some families of Blackbirds also will eat fruit.
The Blackbird makes a nest of dried grasses packed together
with mud and then lined again with fine dried grass on the
inside. You can usually find their nests in a hedge or at
the bottom of a bank. Sometimes you can find a nest on a
beam inside a shed. The eggs are often a greenish blue in
color with reddish brown spots. The spots are very small and
are all over the egg, usually more apparent at the larger
end of the egg.
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