This beautiful little bird gets its name from its bright blue head and upperparts. Its orangish breast, white belly, and wing bars are what separate it from other North American buntings, such as its eastern counterpart, the Indigo Bunting. The Lazuli hybridizes with the Indigo where their ranges overlap on the Great Plains.
General: 5 to 6 inches in length.
Adult Male: Bright blue head and upperparts. Orangish breast. White belly and undertail coverts. Blackish wings and tail. White wing bars. Small, dark, conical bill. Blackish feathers between base of bill and eye.
Adult Female: Dark brown upperparts. Warm brown underparts. White wing bars. Small, dark, conical bill.
Immature: Female plumage similar to adult female. Immature male may have blue patches.
Riparian woodlands, thickets, brushy habitats and areas of oak and chaparral.
3-4 pale blue eggs. The eggs have a 12 day incubation period. Fledging occurs in 10-12 days. The nest is a loose cup of grass and rootlets built in a bush.
- Audubon's Silverwood Wildlife Sanctuary, Lakeside