What does Springtime mean for birds?
Mr. Oreo the Hooded Oriole
A few yards away from my yard is a huge, thick palm tree with a lot of stumpy ones scattered around it. I was hoping for an Oriole nest this year. When a male Hooded Oriole (whom I have named Mr. Oreo. I know, super generic name) started swaying and singing on the tree, I took it to be a good omen.
Mr. Oreo doesn't look like he's singing, but he is. Orioles manage to sing their scratchy songs opening their beaks less than an inch wide.
Today, as I was scouting around and trying to find nests in the backyard, I heard a series of frantic chuffs and scuffles arise from the palm tree. Mr. Oreo had attracted a female with his horrible singing!
His effort was so desperate and strained, like he had spent his lifetime on getting a girl and now couldn't afford to let her go, that I sincerely hoped they would form a mated pair. Mr. Oreo tried to impress the female by singing swankily while carefully assuming an upright position on a shaky perch. The female watched for a bit, seemed won over, and the two flew off to who knows where.
Mourning Doves in Love
Though I can't say this is the same pair I've seen throughout the year mating for sure, it definitely seems like it!
It starts off with a simple routine. The pair starts off far apart and slowly inches together, preening all the way so that they look like giant cottonballs:
"I love you!"
One member of the pair then extends their beak outward in an offer:
And they form a violent, swaying kiss!
What are some of the courting and mating rituals YOU have seen in your backyard?
Sorry about the lack of blog posts recently, time has been really short.