Pumpkin Eater Surprise

I spent last night in Sunriver in central Oregon.  Sunriver is on the other side of the Cascade Mountains from where I live.  It is in the high desert with gorgeous views and plenty of pine trees.  I arrived in the dark so I had no idea what the view outside my room looked like.

Early the next morning (5:15AM to be exact) I was woken up by bird calls.  I looked outside and saw the above scene.  I was just outside a wetland!  What were the birds making all of that noise?

Red-winged Blackbirds!  They were living among the cattails.  There were a lot of them in a very small area, so I expect that the wetland habitat provided ample amounts of food and shelter.

Listen to the songs in the video below.  It sounds like they are yelling “Pumpkin Eater”.  Also, watch for the beautiful display of the male while it flashes its red marks.  Incredible stuff.

  1. What a gorgeous scene to wake up to. The bird songs are hypnotic. Did you find the Red-winged black birds tough to get a good picture of? I sure do. You got a great take Mike!

  2. A beautiful scene to wake up to!
    I’m always excited to see a Red-wing at the feeders. That red flash is particularly noticable right before they land and if the sun is just right it’s beautiful.
    Great video!
    Have a wonderful day Mike!

  3. I love the red-wings. When I see the first one each year, I know spring is on the way. They do seem to nest in large groups in the same area – maybe because there’s only so much wetland to go around?

  4. What a beautiful location and wonderful wakeup call! I love RW Blackbirds and I now have a pair visiting the feeder area but I cannot get a decent shot of the male. You have a lovely shot of the male RWB on the cattail and a great video too!

  5. I don’t like arriving at places I don’t know at night (and that happens a lot), but the morning surprise reward is usually worth it and this is such a case. Fantastic bird!

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