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Old 03-26-2016, 02:35 PM   #11
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I was just going to tell her that. They actually raise that red bar to show off!
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Old 03-28-2016, 11:16 AM   #12
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I only see them when they come through with other blackbirds while migrating in late winter. I've never seen that much color on the wings though, wow!
When they first come through, they are not quite in the mood for breeding and are still part of the flock...once the males start to establish their territories, they start flashing their epaulets--and that is when you can see just how much color there is!

It is not a great shot, but I finally got a photo of them showing off their colors.

Nature's Angry Bird?-img_5237-2-.jpg

While looking for it...I cropped this one as well--too bad I have yet to get a good clear photo of birds in flight with a good composition as well...maybe some day.

Nature's Angry Bird?-img_4697-2-.jpg
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Old 03-28-2016, 11:20 AM   #13
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The color shows less until it does that puffed up thing to impress the female or warn away others.
and

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I was just going to tell her that. They actually raise that red bar to show off!
Yes, I guess I should have read further down the thread before responding as well.

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I like hearing the shrill trill they make in spring.
I love their gurgling call and trilling, too. It is one of the few (only?) bird calls I feel I recognize without seeing the actual bird to verify what I'm hearing.

Yesterday, I went out and they were all calling to each other from high in the trees--love it!
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Old 03-28-2016, 02:32 PM   #14
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I was just going to tell her that. They actually raise that red bar to show off!
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Yes, I guess I should have read further down the thread before responding as well.
If you had,,, You probably wouldn't have responded and we would have missed the fact that the red patches were called epaulets!
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A red-wing’s epaulets are like two badges that signal messages to other birds. In a way, male red-wings must earn these red-and-yellow badges. To earn them they must survive at least until their third year. The colorful epaulet feather pattern develops only after this age. It’s reserved for male red-wings with a proven ability to survive. The epaulets identify the wearer as an older, fitter, and more experienced bird. Also, birds displaying larger and brighter red badges may gain higher social status in a flock.
http://www.knoxnews.com/entertainment/columnists/marcia-davis/marcia-davis-male-blackbirds-most-important-color-isnt-black-ep-510505940-355540721.html
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Old 03-28-2016, 04:05 PM   #15
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Here are a couple of juveniles just to show the males developing.
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Nature's Angry Bird?-juveniles.jpg  
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Old 03-28-2016, 04:36 PM   #16
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Niiiice. I've never viewed one at that stage!
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Old 03-28-2016, 04:36 PM   #17
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Little bit speckled yet like their mother
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Old 03-29-2016, 11:32 AM   #18
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That's more like what I've seen, a yellow bar instead of red.
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Old 03-29-2016, 12:11 PM   #19
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Here are three different stages in the colors.
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Nature's Angry Bird?-01-red-winged.jpg   Nature's Angry Bird?-02-red-winged.jpg   Nature's Angry Bird?-03-red-winged.jpg  
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Old 03-30-2016, 07:11 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by havalotta View Post
If you had,,, You probably wouldn't have responded and we would have missed the fact that the red patches were called epaulets!
http://www.knoxnews.com/entertainment/columnists/marcia-davis/marcia-davis-male-blackbirds-most-important-color-isnt-black-ep-510505940-355540721.html
Very cool....thank you for the additional information.

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Here are a couple of juveniles just to show the males developing.
Nice. I just saw two juveniles here the other day.

I just assumed that they were a year old and would gain their adult plumage this year...now, I've learned it takes longer. Based on the two I saw, I wonder if they were one year old...and those you posted may be two-year olds--just a guess on my part--yours look like they have more color than those I saw.
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