Thursday, November 10, 2011

Brilliant Blue Indigo Bunting Birds Winter in Guatemala

Our neighbor is very good with animals and fond of birds in particular. She has shared her love of birds with Talia through books and feathers and stories of birds that come to her feeder and what they do. As a result, Talia really likes birds too. One of their favorite birds is the Indigo Bunting, a brilliantly blue bird that is not often seen around here.

They are usually found "in brushy and weedy areas along edges of cultivated land, woods, roads, power line rights-of-way, and in open deciduous woods and old fields. Winters in weedy fields, citrus orchards, and weedy cropland."

While looking for it online to show Talia a picture and let her hear his song, (her favorite part,) I found a map that showed the Indigo Bunting wintered in Guatemala! (As well as many parts of Central America.) This map shows where they have been spotted in Guatemala:

Some cool facts about the Indigo Bunting from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology:

"* The Indigo Bunting migrates at night, using the stars for guidance. It learns its orientation to the night sky from its experience as a young bird observing the stars.
* Experienced adult Indigo Buntings can return to their previous breeding sites when held captive during the winter and released far from their normal wintering area.
* The sequences of notes in Indigo Bunting songs are unique to local neighborhoods. Males a few hundred meters apart generally have different songs. Males on neighboring territories often have the same or nearly identical songs.
* Indigo and Lazuli buntings defend territories against each other in the western Great Plains where they occur together, share songs, and sometimes interbreed."

Something I love about homeschooling is the flexibility for Talia to learn about things that she finds interesting. I know we've both enjoyed learning about this bright blue songbird.

1 comment:

  1. I love birds too, what I thougth was different while living in Guatemala was they had hummingbirds the whole 8 months i was there but they were way bigger then ours and not very pretty, I cna't believe everyone I saw was a female and dull, it was interesting.