Tricolored Blackbird (Agelaius tricolor)

The Tricolored Blackbird is a medium-sized bird that is native to the western part of North America. They are known for their striking black, white, and red plumage, which makes them easy to identify and a favorite among birdwatchers.

The male Tricolored Blackbird has a black body with bright red patches, while the female has a less vibrant black-brown body with a white stripe above the eye. They measure about 8-9 inches in length and weigh between 1.5-2 ounces, making them relatively small compared to other blackbirds.

Tricolored Blackbirds prefer wetlands, marshes, and grasslands. During the breeding season, they form large colonies that can range from a few hundred to tens of thousands of birds. These colonies are usually located near water sources such as lakes, ponds or streams. The birds are known for their synchronized behavior, where they all take off and return to their roosting sites at the same time.

The breeding season for Tricolored Blackbirds starts in late March and lasts until mid-June. At the beginning of the season, male birds display their red patches to attract females. They also use their songs to display their dominance over other males. Once a pair forms, they build a nest using grass, leaves, and small twigs. The female lays a clutch of two to four eggs, which hatch after 11-13 days.

Tricolored Blackbirds feed primarily on insects during the breeding season. They also consume seeds during the non-breeding season. The birds are important for their role in controlling insect populations, which can cause crop damage and disease transmission.

Sadly, the Tricolored Blackbird is an endangered species due to the loss of wetland habitats, agricultural practices, and habitat destruction. Therefore, it is important to take measures to conserve their habitats and establish protected breeding areas for colony formation. Despite being endangered, these birds are a delightful sight to watch during their synchronized take-offs and roosting.

Other names

Agelaius tricolor



Tricolored Blackbird

sergent de Califòrnia



kalifornijski vranjak

vlhovec tříbarvý

Trefarvet Stærling



Carouge de Californie


Ittero tricolore


trispalvis juodasis trupialas


epoletnik trójbarwny


Трёхцветный чёрный трупиал

Trobojni američki kos

vlhovec trojfarebný

Sargento tricolor

kalifornisk trupial

Üç Renkli Karatavuk

еполетник каліфорнійський

háromszínű csiröge

trejkrāsu strazds