We’ve been excited to once again have migrating rose-breasted grosbeaks (Pheucticus ludovicianus) in the backyard. These three males seemed quite comfortable feeding among the other birds, including two cardinals.
The female is much plainer and looks entirely different from the male. Her heavy brown streaking reminds me of a large sparrow with a big beak.
In contrast, the males are quite striking and easy to identify, with their contrasting black and white feathers and the brilliant rosy-red triangle that gives them their name.
These birds spend the winter in Central and northern South America and are now headed north for the summer. We’ve enjoyed seeing them in the backyard every spring and occasionally in the fall for at least twenty years. And it’s always exciting to see them again.