Grosbeaks

Black-headed grosbeak1. Black-headed (Pheucticus melanocephalus) _ Length 8.25″, wingspan 12.5″ (1st photo)
2. Pine
(Pinicola enucleator) _ Length 9″, wingspan 14.5″ (2nd photo)

What they eat: Seeds, insects, fruit, suet

Habitat: Woodlands, open pine forests

Where they nest: Trees, shrubs

My observations: We’ve been treated to visits by both of these Grosbeaks, which you’ll notice are two different species, by the way. They lead quite similar lives although the Pine Grosbeak is considered to be more rare, so I’m glad we spotted it. As our landscape has filled in over the years, I believe it has attracted a more diverse population of birds so this should be an important goal for anyone wanting to draw a lot of birds to their garden. The Black-headed Grosbeak seen in the top photo really gorged on one of our suet cakes on a sunny Pine GrosbeakMay day, while the Pine Grosbeak (which is a female) decided to snack on crabapples in March; males have more rosy-red plumage. Both birds typically migrate in late summer.

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