Rusty Blackbirds favor wet areas such as marshes and the edges of ponds which makes the Skating Pond an amazing to see them during late October and early November when they are migrating through the area. Although they are reported in Indiana all winter, they do not hang out at Eagle Creek once the water freezes.
One of the most interesting aspects of the Rusty Blackbird has to do with its molt. they undergo only one molt per year. This means the rusty coloration that we see at this time of year is not molted, rather it is worn away over the winter and the males are jet black and the females are mostly gray by the time breeding season comes along.
|Rusty Blackbird in Nonbreeding Plumage|
If you are here in central Indiana, be on the lookout for some Rusty Blackbirds over the next few weeks and again in March. If not, you can learn more about when they will be in your area by using the eBird map that you can find here.