An Indigo Bunting perches among leaves against the sky in Prairie Oaks Metro Park, West Jefferson, Ohio.
Indigo Buntings are rather common birds, so it's odd that I don't run across them more often during my photo hikes. I have only about 50 photos of Indigo Buntings in my collection, but it’s a treat each time I find one.
One of my favorite bird information websites (All About Birds) says the male Indigo Bunting “looks like a scrap of sky with wings.” It’s hard to come up with a better description than that.
The adult male has this deep blue plumage during the summer breeding season. The wings and tail are black with blue edges and the crown is often a slightly richer blue than the rest of the body. The blue makes it easy to spot against the green in the fields or trees and is used to attract a mate.
During the fall and winter months the adult male has plumage similar to the year-round plumage of the female Indigo Bunting— dark brown upper parts and lighter brown beneath— although the male can retain some blue feathers year round.
Indigo Buntings typically spend summer days in or near weedy fields, singing from the tallest plant or tree they can find. When I found this one beside a wooded trail in Prairie Oaks Metro Park west of Columbus, Ohio, it wasn’t singing but it was perched on the tallest plant.
One of my favorite bird information websites (All About Birds) says the male Indigo Bunting “looks like a scrap of sky with wings.”