Mission Viejo, California
Alan & Maggie Barry and David Brandt
We’re passionate about birds and nature. That’s why we opened a Wild Birds Unlimited Nature Shop in our community.
Mission Viejo, California
24451 Alicia Parkway,
Mission Viejo, CA 92691
Phone: (949) 472-4928
Email: Send Message
Mon - Fri: 10:00 am - 6:00 pm
Sat: 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Sun: 11:00 am - 4:00 pm
Fun Facts About Orioles
- Orioles are insect and fruit eaters. They usually stay hidden in the trees eating and singing their beautiful whistling notes. They can be drawn down from their perches with foods like orange slices, grape jelly, mealworms and nectar feeders.
- When not feeding on nectar, orioles seek out caterpillars, fruits, insects, and spiders.
- Bullock’s Orioles may feed almost entirely on grasshoppers when they are plentiful, one bird was found to have feasted on 45 of them in one day.
- While in their tropical winter habitats, Baltimore and Bullock’s Orioles feed on nectar from numerous flowering trees, which explains their attraction to nectar feeders upon their spring-time return to North America.
- While in their tropical winter habitat, the Baltimore and Bullock’s Oriole play an important role in pollinating several tree species as they transfer pollen from tree to tree while eating nectar from their flowers.
- The Oriole nest is an engineering masterpiece. They weave a hanging-basket nest with plant fibers, grasses, vine and tree bark and sometimes string or yarn placed out on the small twigs of a branch 6-45 feet in the air. This keeps them safe from most predators.
- It takes as many as 12 days for an Oriole to weave its nest. One Baltimore Oriole was observed spending 40 hours building a nest with about 10,000 stitches and the tying of thousands of knots, all with its beak.
- The female Bullock’s Oriole is the primary nest weaver, but she may get some help from her mate in both the weaving and collection of nest material. Only the female incubates and broods, both feed the young.
- While modern day Oriole nests are made primarily of plant fibers, Oriole nests collected in the late 1800s, before the age of the automobile, were made almost exclusively of horsehair.
- Orioles will lay 4-5 eggs anywhere from April to June. The young will fledge as late as 30 days from egg laying.
- Orioles are found across North America in the summer. Some species winter in the tropics and others in Mexico.
- Most Bullock’s Orioles spend their winters in central and southern Mexico, with a few staying along the coast of southern California.
- Both the Bullock’s and Baltimore Orioles start their southerly migration as early as July, with August being the prime migration month.
- Bullock’s and Baltimore Orioles migrate at night and are known to be victims of collisions with buildings and communication towers.
- The Bullock’s Oriole was named in honor of William Bullock and his son, also named William, for their ornithological work in Mexico in the early 1800s.
- The Baltimore Oriole, found in the east, and the western Bullock’s Oriole were once considered to be the same species under the name Northern Oriole. While they do inter-breed in areas where their ranges overlap, genetic studies have shown them to be two distinct species.
- Oriole’s are a member of Icteridae family, meaning that their closest bird relatives include meadowlarks, blackbirds, bobolinks and grackles.
- The oriole gets its name from the Latin aureolus, which means golden.
- In areas with high quality habitat, Orchard Orioles may nest in close proximity to each other; a single tree may even contain several nests.
- The Scott's Oriole, a summer resident of the Southwest U.S., weaves its nest out of fibers from yucca plant leaves.
- Orioles appear to be sensitive to the spraying of pesticides, with birds succumbing directly from the poison and from the loss of their insect food sources.
- The oldest banded Baltimore Oriole recaptured in the wild had lived 11 years and 7 months.
- The oldest banded Orchard Oriole ever recaptured in the wild had lived 9 years and 3 months.
- The oldest banded Bullock’s Oriole ever recaptured in the wild had lived 6 years and 1 month.