Texas Painted Buntings at Carrie's bird feeders ...

roselee z8b S.W. TexasAugust 8, 2012

Carrie took these pictures of the beautiful and rare Texas Painted Bunting at her bird feeder a few days ago and sent them along this morning.

She says, "This male and a female were at the feeders a couple of days running, then yesterday I saw a juvenile male at the feeders, so hopefully, that means they are nesting here.......woo-hoo !! The quality of the pictures is not too good, but you can see how beautiful they are."

"Whoo-hoo" is right! To see them at bird feeders is still a rare sight as they are a shy bird of the wooded areas in Texas. However, they are appearing more often in suburban yards.

Carrie, what kind of seeds do you find that they prefer?

If anyone else has experience and/or photos of Texas Painted Buntings you're invited to post them on this thread.

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PKponder TX(7b)

Thank you Carrie for getting the pictures and Roselee for posting them! It's been a long time since we had them at our feeders in Granbury and I love these beauties!

They were fond of pale millet (not the red)when we lived in Granbury.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 11:38AM
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carrie751(z7/8 TX)

That seems to be their seed of choice here as well.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 12:05PM
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ogrose_tx

Wow, lucky you!! They are gorgeous.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 5:13PM
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wantonamara Z8 CenTex

I have had about three males and four girls. The guys are around a lot more than the girls.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 11:15PM
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honeybunny2(Z9TX)

I have never seen one before, thanks for posting the pictures. Barbra

    Bookmark   August 9, 2012 at 4:37PM
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WalnutCreek Zone 7b/8a(7b8a)

Wow! Just beautiful. I have never seen one, so it was thrilling to see these photos taken by someone here in Texas.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2012 at 6:48PM
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linda_tx8(8)

Carrie, I'm so happy for you! I first saw the Painted Buntings here last summer toward the end of the summer, I think. And my luck got even better when they returned in late June! I call the males "pretty boys" and the females I call "greenies". My pet names, I guess! They're still here and come to the feeder every day. Makes the summer more bearable to see them. This one must be a female.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2012 at 7:05PM
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linda_tx8(8)

Well, that one didn't show up. One more try, I guess!

    Bookmark   August 9, 2012 at 7:11PM
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linda_tx8(8)

I've got a feeder near a window and just take the picture with the lens between the curtains. One of the pretty boys!

    Bookmark   August 9, 2012 at 7:16PM
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carrie751(z7/8 TX)

Linda, what great pics, and you are so blessed to get to see them each day. I am in awe of these little birds, but my males don't come out as often as the females. I see and hear the females in the large shrubs I planted by the barn when I was building my Backyard Habitat ......they love not being so visible. Your photos are just beautiful.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2012 at 8:32AM
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linda_tx8(8)

Thank you. You're right about them being shy! They like thick shrubby areas best and don't want to be far from cover at any given time. My yard has small trees and shrubs for them to hide in. I've also heard that they don't usually stay long in cities...this I was told by someone who works in a wild bird store. I bought another feeder with an excluder just for them...filled it with white millet. They deserve it.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2012 at 11:25AM
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rock_oak_deer(8b TX)

Beautiful photos Carrie and Linda. We have not seen any this year.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2012 at 12:09PM
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carrie751(z7/8 TX)

That is an awesome photo of mama feeding baby .......love it.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2012 at 5:04PM
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PKponder TX(7b)

I love your photos too Linda! The females seem shyer and those are just great shots!

    Bookmark   August 11, 2012 at 9:57PM
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linda_tx8(8)

Thanks! The pretty boys and the greenies are both shy. But they need to eat, so that doesn't always stop them from coming to my feeders. Sometimes they hide behind the feeder tube hoping they can't be seen. Their song is pretty, too!

    Bookmark   August 12, 2012 at 9:05AM
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carrie751(z7/8 TX)

They have a beautiful song, Linda. It took me quite some time to know where that "sound" was coming from as I had never heard it before. My first painted bunting appeared at my feeder on Easter Sunday of 2003 and they have appeared randomly since then.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2012 at 9:38AM
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roselee z8b S.W. Texas

Scroll down on the site below and hear their song!

Here is a link that might be useful: Painted bunting sounds ...

    Bookmark   August 12, 2012 at 10:03AM
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PKponder TX(7b)

Roselee, thanks for the sounds! I think that I have heard them here but they must be hiding in the trees!

    Bookmark   August 12, 2012 at 11:01AM
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Lynn Marie

OMG! Those are gorgeous! I've never even heard of them. Now I'm going to buy nothing but pale millet for my one feeder in hopes of one day attracting them. I'm sure the plain brown birds won't care. They'll eat anything.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2012 at 8:40PM
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linda_tx8(8)

Well, my Painted Buntings left already, unfortunately. Hopefully they will return here next summer!

    Bookmark   August 30, 2012 at 9:26PM
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linda_tx8(8)

Oh, and they will come to a feeder that has mixed bird seed, as long as it has that kind of millet included. I just put a separate feeder with the millet and excluder to decrease the competition with other birds.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2012 at 9:32PM
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carrie751(z7/8 TX)

I am still seeing females at the feeder often, so think my stay year round. The males are just very shy, and come out only when they think no one is around.

    Bookmark   August 31, 2012 at 1:04PM
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linda_tx8(8)

Well, my bird book shows that they're only in the U.S. during the breeding season...except for southern Florida, where some overwinter. Otherwise they overwinter in tropical regions.

    Bookmark   August 31, 2012 at 11:41PM
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carrie751(z7/8 TX)

Maybe mine are just slower to leave as they are still here. I will be more observant of when I no longer see them....

    Bookmark   September 1, 2012 at 9:31AM
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