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The Red Wing Blackbird can be easily identified by its appearance, as well as, its sounds. These birds are larger than a song thrush and much noisier. They welcome the early spring by perching on cattails in roadside ditches and have even been known to bring to mind the thoughts of milder weather.
The Red Wing Blackbird sports a sharp pointed bill. The male has scarlet shoulders bordered with gold. The female has very heavily streaked underparts. The females back and streaks below are dark gray brown giving an overall brown impression much like a large sparrow. The immature male resembles the female but with a red shoulder patch like the adult males. These birds are known to wreck havoc in the garden. It's diet consist of insects and berries, which it forages for by raking over piles of dead leaves. It is also very fond of ripe fruits such as cherries and strawberries. This bird and members of it's family have been recognized in song, verse and nursery rhymes. It is not a sociable or trusting individual.
This common species nests in marshes and fields and forages in more fruitful surrounding areas. The nest is built in bushes, evergreens, hedges and trees. This nest is made of straw, moss, grass and twigs with an occasional inner layer of mud and lining of dried grass. The female will lay three or four eggs that re bluish green with brown or gray spots. At times the eggs can be found completely unmarked. The birds are aggressive but form enormous winter flocks, often with grackles or cowbirds. When startled they will fly away emitting a shrill, complaining scream. The normal song of the Red Wing Blackbird is beautiful to the ears. The emit deep, rich notes that sound much like a flute. They can often be heard singing in the evening after dark.