Orange Bird Identification

Written by laila alvarez
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Orange Bird Identification
Blackburian Warbler

One way of identifying a type of bird is looking at various colours and patterns. A brightly-coloured bird is easy to recognise if you know what you're looking for. Orange is a difficult colour to categorise because of its close similarity to reds and yellows, and variation often exists within the same species among different sexes and age groups. It's important to know exactly where to look for colour and marking before determining the species of bird.

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Blackburnian Warbler

The Blackburnian Warbler is a small, insectivorous bird, weighing just 8.5 grams. They can be found in North America/Canada and migrate to South America in the winter. The bright yellow-orange colour of their neck and upper-breast area is a key identifier for this little feathered fellow. With a backside and wings of grey and a white underbelly, the orange hues stand out so that they are hard to miss.

Orange Bird Identification
Blackburian Warbler

Baltimore Oriole

A female Baltimore Oriole looks very similar to the Blackburnian Warbler. Both have grey wings, a white underbelly and a yellow-orange neck/head area. One key to tell the difference is that the warblers have black mask-like markings around their eyes and face.

The male Baltimore Oriole, however, is easy to spot because of his bright-orange belly. Once you've spotted the bright colour, the completely black head and dark wings also stand out as a distinct oriole characteristic.

This oriole can be found in the North-Eastern United States and Canada and in South America in the winter months.

Orange Bird Identification
Baltimore Oriole male

Common Crossbill

The Common Crossbill is a small, pine-tree loving bird that lives throughout North America, Europe and Asia in spruce forests. In North America, it is known as the Red Crossbill.

This unique bird is easily identified for two distinct characteristics: the blotchy, red-orange colour of its feathers and the crooked nature of its beak, which helps with eating pine cones.

Like the Baltimore Oriole, sexual dimorphism exists between a male crossbill and a female crossbill. If you've spotted a completely orange crossbill, safely assume that is a male. A female crossbill is often more yellow and grey, much like the oriole and warbler. But, sometimes a female will be green.

Studies are still being done on the crossbills, as there is variety among the species in different forests of the U.S. There are also two other varieties, the Parrot Crossbill and the Scottish Crossbill. All three species are very similar in size and colouring, with only a slight size difference in the head and bill.

Orange Bird Identification
Two male Common Crossbills

Red Siskin

The Red Siskin is a highly endangered species living in South America. Their underbellies are a deep red-orange with light orange tips toward the bottom. Colour variations depend on their age, as young males tend to look more brown, while young females are a pale version of an adult's colour.

The Red Siskin has been often bred with the yellow canary to make breeds of birds with very bright orange feathers, or a mix of the yellows blacks and oranges found in the two types of birds.

Orange Bird Identification
Red Siskin male

Scissor-tailed Flycatcher

The Scissor-tailed Flycatcher is one bird with orange feathers that isn't easily spotted. The orange is muted, like a creamy version of the bright colour, and is displayed in the most hidden spot on the bird: under the wings and slightly on the side.

A Scissor-tailed Flycatcher in flight would show off more of his orange colour than one perched on a branch.

This species can be found mostly in the southern-central states of the U.S. and Northern Mexico. They also migrate further south in Mexico and to Central America.

Orange Bird Identification
Scissor-tailed Flycatcher

Andean Cock-of-the-rock

The Andean Cock-of-the-rock is a medium-size, unique bird found in the Andean Cloud Forests in South America. The male's brilliant bright orange feathers resemble a hooded shawl wrapped around the bird's head and shoulders, with the bottom half of the body covered in black feathers.

The top of the male's head may look like a small afro, but the bump is actually part of the bird's skull.

The female bird of this species is much less attractive, with a dull orangey-brown colour dominating the entire body. She is left by her more handsome mate after laying eggs and is left to raise the kids all alone.

This bird species' diet consists of a wide variety: fruit, insects and even frogs.

Orange Bird Identification
Andean Cock-of-the-rock male

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