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Sturnella magna  Eastern Meadowlark
These ground-nesting insectivores are widespread, inhabiting grazed fields, levees, and other grassy landscapes. They are frequent cowbird hosts, and their nests are easily destroyed by the mowing of fields in April, May, and June.

painting by Louis Agassiz Fuertes 1914
female or male

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Agelaius phoeniceus  Red-winged Blackbird
Red-wings share many habitats with Common Yellowthroats but avoid piney woods even more so. These shrub-nesting insectivores and granivores occur in fields, marshes, and shrubland in open country. The gap in Winn and Grant parishes is, for the most part, pine woodland with little or no pasture or cropland. The Red-winged Blackbird is a frequent host of cowbirds.

painting by Louis Agassiz Fuertes 1914
male (left) and female (right)

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Molothrus ater  Brown-headed Cowbird
These urban-tolerant granivores and insectivores are obligate brood parasites a cowbird lays her eggs in the nests of other songbirds, prompting them to raise cowbirds at the expense of their own young. A female cowbird typically parasitizes several nests during the breeding season. Females seek their victims by watching from perches at forest margins. Parasitism is especially prevalent in fragmented forest lands but infrequent in some coastal marshes.

painting by Louis Agassiz Fuertes 1914
male (left) and female (right)