MORE OF THE JULY BLUES – Marilyn Armstrong

BLUE OR GREEN COWBIRD?

Personally, I think he’s blue. His beak has always looked blue to me and this boy also has blue eyes, too. I know he’s a boy because the girls are all a pale taupe brown, so the boys have all the color!

Obviously, his beak has to match his eyes, right? And it would be a birdy embarrassment should his feathers fail to match the eyes and beak.

Bird colors are usually well-organized. Well, mostly, anyway.

Anyway, some people feel he is really a blackbird. Some think he is actually dark green. But in the sunshine, all my Brown-Headed Cowbirds have been strikingly blue.

I’m not sure there really is such a thing as a black anything. Even my black clothing, as it gets washed, it turns dark navy. I think all blackbirds are really a very dark shade of blue. Nothing but space is truly black because black is the absence of color. In our world, there is no such thing as an absence of color.

Cowbird in sunlight — blue or green?

26 thoughts on “MORE OF THE JULY BLUES – Marilyn Armstrong”

    1. I’m not sure black is a color we can create. Even the dye black is really a compound of other colors, mostly dark blue, the appear black. I think all blackbirds gleam dark blue or green in sunlight. This one was obviously to my eyes, blue!

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      1. It’s fascinating how colours work. My dad was colour blind and couldn’t see yellow properly. I sometimes wonder if we all see colours differently.

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    1. I can see where it could be difficult to tell the difference, depending on the light … and these birds live all over the country, so maybe in the light in the southwest, they have a different glow. But black? Not black!

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  1. Your blue birdie looks a tad TEAL colored to me (greenish blue), but whatever he is, he’s definitely BLUE. Black? Nope. Navy? Nope. Green? Nope (not totally). He gorgeous and I get the impression he knows that too. Lady Cowbirds? Watch out! 😛

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    1. That’s what I mean when i say it can be hard to tell the two colors apart. The changes of light produce a different effect. But since the beak is blue — and his eyes are dark blue — I’m going with blue!

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    1. I did begin to get a little tired of them when they took over both feeders. They are not normally feeder birds, but no one told my cowbirds! I got a LOT of pictures of them, but not many when they weren’t attached to a feeder. This one, he is standing alone in the sun.

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  2. I see blue (and purple!) Interesting bird. Did you know they lay their eggs in the nests of other birds that then raise them? Maybe that’s how they learned about feeders!

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    1. Yes, I know. They don’t even build a nest of their own. But interestingly, unlike many birds that lay their eggs in other nests, the babies don’t kill their step-siblings. They grow up with them, assuming the parent bird doesn’t decide to not let the egg hatch, of course. Some birds are more savvy than others about whose eggs are whose.

      What I can’t figure out is HOW the baby cowbirds know how to be cowbirds? It must be ALL DNA since they don’t have parent birds to teach them. That is the more interesting question.

      Quite a few birds lay their eggs in other birds’ nests and often will break open the original eggs too. Also bigger birds will eat the baby birds of smaller birds. They are very pretty, but they aren’t all very nice.

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