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Lazuli Sings the Blues


Lazuli Bunting

Passerina amoena


If you purchased my 2021 “Talk Birdie to Me” calendar, meet your May bird!


Those that live in western North America, your summer guests may be arriving soon. The Lazuli Bunting (LAZB), named after the lapis lazuli gemstone, will certainly light up your yard with their vibrant blue plumage. The males are also known for their sweet melodic songs. These flying blue gemstones are not officially bluebirds - literally or figuratively. They have no blue feathers. What we see is a structural blue, a consequence of light refraction... a (pig)ment of our imagination. Wild, right!?!? The Lazuli is a member of the Cardinal family, which also includes tanagers and grosbeaks. This buntings roll deep in rich colors, have you ever seen a Painted Bunting? If you live east, look for the beautiful Indigo Bunting. If your around the Great Plains, you may see a hybridization of the Lazuli and Indigo.


The male pictured above was just one of about twenty avian jewels that found joy (aka-comfort food ) in my yard last May. To attract them, try sunflower seeds, nyjer (thistle) seed or white proso millet. A group of buntings is known as “mural” 💎🐦






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