HOODED ORIOLE


Icterus cucullatus


Description:

This is one of the coolest looking birds. I love their orange and black colors. They feed on insects, fruit, and nectar. The nectar is taken from plants, such as agaves, aloes, hibiscus, lilies, and other tubular flowers, by piercing the base of the flower's stem, which has the effect of avoiding plant pollination. The Hooded Oriole nests here in the Spring and Summer, but winters down in Mexico. Likes to nest in palm groves and yuccas. Their nests are the tear drop hanging kind and is usually built by the female. Typically 3-5 eggs are laid with an incubation period of around 13 days. The female does the incubating. The young are later tended to by both parents.


Appearance:

General: 7 inches in length.

Male: Bright orange body. Black wings with white wing bars. Black bill. Black patch covering face, throat, and chest. Black tail feathers.

Female: Yellow underparts, olive-gray upperparts and eye stripe. White wing bars.

Immature: Male similar to female, except it has a black throat.


Habitat:

Backyards and riparian woodlands.


Nesting:

3-5 white eggs with dark brown and purple blotches. They have a 12-14 day incubation period. Fledging occurs 14 days after hatching. The nest is a basket made from plant fibers with a top entrance. The nest hangs from palm fronds, the branches of eucalyptus, or other tree branches.


Observed Locations:

  • Lake Murray, La Mesa
  • Kit Carson Park, Escondido





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