The spring migrants will be arriving at a fast and furious pace now. I won’t be able to do a whole blog on each one now in time for you to use the info to identify them when you see them. So, I am doing a series of Quick Intro posts! I will alert you to when I see and hear them around and give you some pictures and audio that I have collected to use to identify them with! Not all blackbirds are the same! We have lots of different “blackbirds” here in Western Mass. They are all in different families of birds too! I will do a blog on them at some point, but here are some sights and sounds of 3 migrants so you can start to look for them in your bird watching escapades! I included photos of all the birds people call blackbirds for comparison as well.

The Rusty Blackbird has a sweet and melodious call. I taped this audio April 1st in Fannie Stebbins in Longmeadow. You will hear his call in contrast to 2 other common black birds that have arrived about a month ago-the Common Grackle and the Red-winged Blackbirds. The Fish Crow arrived recently and I instantly identified his nasal sounding, hoarse call in my yard April 2nd. I had no phone, so this audio is from my yard last June. You can hear him starting at 9 seconds. The Brown-headed Cowbirds are here to do their thing. They have lots of sounds, but the easiest to identify is a high-pitched squeal or whistle sound. The audio below is from yesterday and they call a few different times. They like to knock out other birds’ eggs out of their nests and lay a cowbird egg there so that a different species will raise their young.

Rust Blackbird, Common Grackle and Red-winged Blackbirds
Fish Crow mix
Brown-headed Cowbird with other birds