If you live in the western United States, keep an eye out for a stunning bird any artist would love to paint: the Lazuli Bunting.
After spending the winter on the Pacific coast of Mexico, these songbirds will make their way to their breeding grounds, a territory that spans from the western Dakotas and western Nebraska to the Pacific coast.
The male Lazuli Bunting has a bright jewel-blue plumage and a wash of rust orange above its white belly. Female buntings, on the other hand, are soft brown in color. This helps them stay well camouflaged while sitting on their eggs — a necessity, considering the Lazuli Bunting nests in shrubs near the ground. During their breeding season, which runs between April and mid-August, the pairs will raise two, perhaps three broods.
Aside from its colorful appearance, Lazuli Buntings stand out in that the male will create his own song, one that is unique to him. Or, he may imitate one of an older male. Also, this species is a close relative to the Indigo Bunting, which live on the eastern half of the U.S. In fact, the territories of the two species overlap on the Great Plains, and they will interbreed.
Throughout the summer, you can find the Lazuli Bunting in open woods, along rivers and in shrubby areas. You’ll see them foraging for food low to the ground, pulling insects from leaves and grass, pecking the ground for seed.
The Lazuli Bunting is also a feeder visitor. Lyric Fine Tunes No Waste Mix is ideal for attracting the Bunting along with other colorful birds of spring!