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Brown-Headed Cowbird

The Internets are a perfect place for birding. I have yet to find a single comprehensive site, but I've gathered combined resources that help me identify tricky birds when my Beginner's Guide don't cut it.

The other day, I saw the weirdest bird. Stark brown head, and shiny black body with a tint of green. And the call was a cute, but strange, bubbling noise followed by a loud whistle. I was stumped until I stumbled across Wikipedia's image (above). It was dead-on exactly like the bird I saw, and Cornell's page has the call. Fun fact:

The Brown-headed Cowbird is the only brood parasite common across North America. A female cowbird makes no nest of her own, but instead lays her eggs in the nests of other bird species, who then raise the young cowbirds.
Brood parasites!

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