Ingrid filmed a Dickcissel this afternoon near a community garden in Brunswick, Maine. This charming visitor from the Midwest United States is a rare sight in Maine.
During the breeding season, Dickcissels are primarily found on the Great Plains and throughout the Midwest. Their preferred breeding habitat consists of grasslands, prairies, and open fields, where they build their nests among tall grasses and forage for insects and seeds. Their distinctive and loud “dick-cissel” song, from which they derive their name, fills the air in these regions as they establish territories and attract mates.
When the colder months arrive, Dickcissels undertake a significant migration to escape the harsh winter conditions of their breeding territories. These birds head south, primarily to Mexico and Central America, where they find suitable wintering grounds. They prefer habitats such as grasslands, agricultural fields, and open woodlands during the winter months, where they can continue to feed on seeds and insects. The Dickcissel’s wintering range extends from southern Mexico through countries like Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua.
The bird Ingrid found had made a wrong turn somewhere . . . hopefully it will reorient itself and head south before the cold weather arrives.