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Lazuli Bunting passing through on spring migration

By on April 23, 2018 in Columnist with 0 Comments

By Bruce McCammon

The Lazuli Bunting is a seasonal visitor to north central Washington.

They arrive as part of the spring migration and mix in with Grosbeak, Chat, Orioles and Tanagers to throw vibrant colors across our landscapes.

This male Lazuli Bunting shows off his rich mating colors — a deep blue head, pumpkin-orange breast and white belly. You can see a bit of the white stripe at the top of the wing.

With a stout beak, this bird eats seeds and insects. They are about five to six inches long with a wingspan of eight-and-a-half to nine inches.

They forage at various heights in trees and shrubs but will perch and sing on exposed branches.

Lazuli Bunting by photographer Bruce McCammon

This bird was photographed about two miles up Number Two Canyon Road in Wenatchee in May 2017.

As is often the case, we are likely to hear these birds before we see them. We can often find birds by sound and then find them visually.

You have a big advantage identifying a bird if you know a variety of bird songs or calls. There are several apps for smart phones or devices that provide help to identify birds and which include bird songs.

A great resource on the web is https://www.xeno-canto.org.

We are really fortunate to experience a diversity of bird species during spring migration.

The Lazuli Bunting is always a bonus bird to hear and see. Listen carefully as you hike or ride area trails.

If you see a Lazuli Bunting, stop for a moment and appreciate its beauty. It’s a great find any time you can see one. Good luck.

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