Bullock’s Oriole (Female)


Photo by Bob Steele

The other day, I was walking in the riparian woodland near my home, and I looked back over my shoulder and saw a bird with a yellow head and a whitish breast standing on a tree branch, the sunlight shining directly on her. I thought: that is distinctive enough for an I.D.! This morning, I remembered to look up the possibilities in Birds of Northern California, and sure enough, here she is! A female Bullock’s Oriole. I did not see a male bird with her, but the authors of the guide observe how the male’s plumage hides him in the summer:  “The glowing orange, black and white plumage of the adult male blends remarkably well with the pronounced sunlit-and-shadowed summer foliage in which orioles spend most of their time” (354). Isn’t that interesting?

Bullock’s Oriole Plays a Blue Note” by Eric Meyer


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