Red-winged Blackbird (Agelaius phoeniceus)

Order: Passeriformes
Family: Icteridae
Genus: Agelaius
Species: phoeniceus


This bird has been reportedly found in the following regions:

Auburn, Alabama
Vincent, Alabama
Mesa, Arizona
Barling, Arkansas
Fayetteville, Arkansas
, British Columbia
Highland, California
Denver, Colorado
Glade Park, Colorado
Sandy Hook, Connecticut
Avon Park, Florida
Big Pine Key, Florida
Daytona Beach, Florida
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Lutz, Florida
New Port Richey, Florida
Conyers, Georgia
Snellville, Georgia
Montpelier, Idaho
Nampa, Idaho
Algonquin, Illinois
Cherry Valley, Illinois
Divernon, Illinois
Geneva, Illinois
Grayslake, Illinois
Mchenry, Illinois
Skokie, Illinois
Westchester, Illinois
Coatesville, Indiana
Patriot, Indiana
Sioux City, Iowa
Yale, Iowa
Barbourville, Kentucky
Hebron, Kentucky
Baton Rouge, Louisiana (2 reports)
Bowie, Maryland
Linthicum Heights, Maryland
Oakland, Maryland
Davison, Michigan
Traverse City, Michigan
Albertville, Minnesota
Hamel, Minnesota
Cole Camp, Missouri
Conway, Missouri
Saint Louis, Missouri
Wayne, Nebraska
Beachwood, New Jersey
North Brunswick, New Jersey
Hamburg, New York
Mars Hill, North Carolina
Bucyrus, Ohio
Geneva, Ohio
Gold Hill, Oregon
Manzanita, Oregon
Mill City, Oregon
Salem, Oregon
Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Starr, South Carolina
Jonesborough, Tennessee
Austin, Texas
Burleson, Texas
Copperas Cove, Texas
Edinburg, Texas
Fort Worth, Texas
Houston, Texas (2 reports)
Keller, Texas
Needville, Texas
Plano, Texas
Red Oak, Texas
San Antonio, Texas
Essex Junction, Vermont
Alexandria, Virginia
Edinburg, Virginia
Walkerton, Virginia
Shelton, Washington
Stanwood, Washington
Lake Geneva, Wisconsin
Show all

Members' Notes:


On Feb 26, 2015, Chillybean from Near Central, IA (Zone 5a) wrote:

This bird was one of the first we identified after moving to Iowa. They seem to have fairly small breeding territories, with a male bird perched on every other post or so. After they leave in the fall, I miss their "honk-er-ees" , but every spring they return.

During migration, we get hordes, but rarely do they take over the feeders for long, at least in our experience. They also forage for bugs on the ground and in the trees. It is interesting, the males forage on the ground and the females up in the trees gleaning bugs from the small branches.

We did have a slightly aggressive male one dry summer. They prefer nesting near water, but that year there was not much around. He claimed a spot near our duck coop, so every time someone went out to tend to th... read more


On Oct 1, 2012, geneva_illinois from Geneva, IL wrote:

I live next door to a wetland that was planted with cattails a few years ago. The Red-winged Blackbirds have come by the hundreds and nest there. I watch these aggressive birds chase away the desirable birds such as finches, swallows, catbirds and cedar waxwings. The Blackbirds increase in number yearly. They empty bird feeders in an hour and chase away other birds in my bird bath. They have become a problem because they reduce the diversity of bird species.


On Dec 31, 2010, audsrz from Traverse City, MI (Zone 5a) wrote:

Living in a region blessed with so much fresh water, we have cattails growing in nearly every roadside ditch. Hardly a mile can you travel without the distinctive call and seeing nests under construction every spring.


On Jun 3, 2010, Sheryll52 from Avon Park, FL wrote:

I moved to Central Florida from Miami, hence , I didnt see much wildlife till I got here. When I first started my feeders, there was one, then two. I was initially excited however, they quickly multiplied and made it difficult for the cardinals, woodpeckers, finches, and bluebirds to eat. They are beautiful but they also attract those darn grackles which are numerous in Miami. Sorry to say I dont hate them but they are very hungry.


On Jun 2, 2010, merigold from Sioux City, IA (Zone 4b) wrote:

This is a bird that we never see in the city. We tend to see them along the roadside in fields.


On Apr 17, 2010, gardeningfun from Harpersfield, OH (Zone 5a) wrote:

We have one of these birds in our yard every day. He is so pleasant and chirps a lot. He sits in the same tree each day and if disturbed, simply flies to the next pine tree and sits there for a while. I love the red and yellow wings! They are just beautiful. Once in a while he is joined by a couple other blackbirds. I believe he built a nest in our pine trees, but am not sure and don't want to disturb them.


On Mar 21, 2010, Martin_Taylor from Mountain Home, AR (Zone 6b) wrote:

Same as plantladylin from (Zone 9b):

I see these birds in our area during the winter months and early spring, coming in waves with the flocks of Common Grackles and Brown-headed Cowbirds and Starlings.

The combinations of the above wipe out our feeders, leaving nothing for the Cardinals, Juncos, Goldfinches, Blacked-Capped Chickadees. At least, the Blue Jays and Nuthatches have alternate food sources, rather than grains.

I remember growing up in Alabama, they were not like this.


On Feb 25, 2010, plantladylin from (Zone 1) wrote:

We see these birds in our area during the winter months, usually with flocks of Common Grackles and Brown-headed Cowbirds.


On Feb 17, 2010, BajaBlue from Rancho Santa Rita, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:

As a child I lived in the Rio Grande
Valley (far south tip ) of Texas,
Tropical to sub-tropical area, and
a recognized popuar interntional
f;uway for migrting wild birds.
These birds could be seen hordes
descenting on fallow fields, I as-
sume searching for seeds or
possibly insects.

Now all these years later, we live
in North Texas we see the red
wings later in the winter although
probably during approximately
the same climate and weather
conditions (cloudy cold windy)

For us they are harbingers of
spring, an even earlier sign
of the hope ot spring, more
so than evem the robins arriv/al
later in winter/early spring.
... read more


On Feb 17, 2010, Ohioborn from Patriot, IN wrote:

Three of these fellows appeared on this snowy day at the bird feeder. They were eating seed off the ground along with all the other hungry birds.


On Mar 12, 2009, sonnet from Hamel, MN wrote:

In summer I love to hear their distinct, pleasant call ("kook-A-rrreeeee!") as I walk around the lakes. They are numerous here in MN in warmer weather, and seem to enjoy hanging out in the cattails.