Saturday, January 29, 2011

Dark-eyed Juncos

We see Dark-eyed Juncos on our bird feeder frequently. We know they're dark-eyed juncos because of their markings. I recognized them from my reading.

Dark-eyed juncos are a kind of little cute sparrow. The males are black with a pink bill and a white breast. The females are brown with an orangy brown wing. They eat grasshoppers, ants, beetles, catepillars, spiders and weed seeds. They are omnivores. The eat more insects in the warmer months.

They live in cold places. The males winter more north than the females. They live in coniferous forests and places.

The nest is in a small bush or tree. The nest is in the shape of a cup. The nest is lined with grasses and fur.

They lay about 3-4 eggs at a time. The female eats the egg shells after the chicks hatch to help her produce more eggs and to help her replace the calcium she used in making the 3 or 4 eggs.

The baby chicks poop in little sacks made of edible sugar. After they poop in it, the parents will eat it! Gross! They stop eating it when the babies start producing harmful bacteria. Then, the dark-eyed juncos just throw it out of the nest!

Here is the call.