Thursday, May 23, 2013

Rose-breasted Grosbeak

Rose-breasted Grosbeak - Pheucticus ludovicianus

Alberta is at least a part-time home to four grosbeaks. The Rose-breasted and the Black-headed are around in spring and summer. The Evening and Pine are winter residents. The former are in the Cardinal family, the latter in the Finch family. 

The species name means "from Louisiana," which is not accurate since the bird is only a migrant in the Southern states. 
The Rose-breasted Grosbeak has two broods a season, which makes for a busy spring and summer. Eggs are incubated for 12 to 14 days and the young are dependent on the adult for about 3 weeks. The male feeds the first brood while the female prepares the second nest. 
The Rose-breasted in the photos visited my feeders on May 13, 2011. My records indicate visits on May 24 and June 11, 2009, June 27 and July 14, 2010, and May 13 and June 18, 2011. These gorgeous birds are due for a visit.  

One year my daughter Christine visited in the spring and I remarked that it was too bad that a Rose-breasted Grosbeak was not around. Christine looked up and replied, "like that one Dad." Amazing coincidence!


The Atlas of Breeding Birds of Alberta. Federation of Alberta Naturalists. 2007.

Baicich PJ, Harrison CJO. Nests, Eggs, and Nestlings of North American Birds. Princeton UP. 2005.

Beadle D, Rising J. Sparrows of the United States and Canada. Princeton UP. 2003. 

Fisher C, Acorn J. Birds of Alberta. Lone Pine Publishing. Edmonton. 1998.

Sibley David A. The Sibley Guide to Bird Life and Behavior. Alfred A Knopf, Inc. New York. 2001.

Tudge Colin. The Bird. Crown Publishers. New York. 2008.

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