Isn’t this Varied Bunting a wonderful mix of purple, red and blue colors? This is another colorful bird I have watched and photographed on my birding trip to S.E. Arizona in the past week and a half. Like the also colorful Broad-billed Hummingbird in my article Monday, this bird lives mostly in Mexico. However, this bird’s range does come up into extreme southeast Arizona, a tiny part of very extreme southwest New Mexico plus a chunk of southwestern Texas. Their southern range extends into a small piece of Guatemala.
Just like many other bird species, this bright colorful plumage belongs to the adult males while the females are a dull tan. However I spotted the female first as she fed on seeds on some tall weeds. As I watched her and tried to discern what species she was, the distinctive male joined her and fed near each other for a few minutes. While there has been little research on Varied Buntings, they bring insects to their young like many other songbird species but also eat seeds and some fruit.
Southeast Arizona is one of the top birding areas in the Unites States. If you come here the Tucson Audubon Society’s website offers great information on where and when to look for birds plus a lot of other helpful information. They also publish Finding Birds in Southeast Arizona, now in it’s eight edition (be sure to buy the newest edition), a very useful guide to birding around southeast Arizona.
Yes, I’m have a great time! Hope these photos and articles lets you share the wonderful birding here.