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The Female Oriole Weaves a Nest

These colorful migrants build beautiful hanging nests

In summer, across much of North America, a sudden flash of orange and black in the treetops usually means one thing: orioles. Baltimore Orioles in the East, Bullock’s Orioles in the West, and Hooded Orioles in the Southwest and California. These vividly colored birds return each spring from Mexico and Central America, and their brilliant orange feathers remind us of the tropics.

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Full Transcript

Transcript: 

BirdNote®

The Female Oriole Weaves a Nest

Written by Bob Sundstrom
 
This is BirdNote.

[Bullock’s Oriole song]

In summer, across much of North America, a sudden flash of orange and black in the treetops usually means one thing: orioles. Baltimore Orioles in the East [Baltimore Oriole song], Bullock’s Orioles in the West [Bullock’s Oriole song], and Hooded Orioles in the Southwest and California [Hooded Oriole Song]. These vividly colored birds return each spring from Mexico and Central America, and their brilliant orange feathers remind us of the tropics. [Bullock’s Oriole song]

With slender, sharply pointed bills, orioles weave nests that hang like pendants. [Baltimore Oriole song]

You can spot these hanging nests most easily in the cooler months, when the trees have lost their leaves. The nest resembles a woven pouch, suspended from a slender branch. The female builds it in about a week, meticulously weaving long, flexible strands of grass — and sometimes adding in man-made materials she finds, too. Look carefully at an oriole’s nest and you may discover bits of yarn, twine, fishing line, and maybe even a colorful ribbon the wind carried away from a backyard birthday party. [Hooded Oriole song]

Can’t get out to see an oriole right now? Then come to our website for some photos of these astonishingly beautiful songsters — and their nests. That’s birdnote.org. I’m Michael Stein.  [Baltimore Oriole song]

###

Producer: John Kessler

Managing Producer: Jason Saul

Editor: Ashley Ahearn

Associate Producer: Ellen Blackstone

Assistant Producer: Mark Bramhill

Narrator: Michael Stein

Sounds of the birds provided by The Macaulay Library of Natural Sounds at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, New York. Song of the Bullock’s Oriole 125388 recorded by T.G. Sander; song of the Baltimore Oriole recorded by A.A. Allen. HOOR ML45180 BAOR ML12483.

BirdNote’s theme composed and played by Nancy Rumbel and John Kessler.

© 2019 BirdNote     July 2019

ID# oriole-01-2011-07-07  orig: 071806BUOR2  oriole-01b

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