John Ashley Fine Art Photography : Photo Keywords : redwinged blackbird  : <B>"Nesting Instinct."</B> A Red-winged Blackbird arrives with a beak full of carefully selected grasses that she will artfully weave into a nest cup, creating a nursery for her future family. You can read more about Red-winged Blackbirds <a target="new" href="http://wildandfreemontana.blogspot.com/2011/03/red-winged-blackbirds.html">here</a> at my "<a target="new" href="http://wildandfreemontana.blogspot.com/">Wild & Free Montana</a>" website. <U><I>Behind the lens.</U> As kids, I think every one of us has made a mustache of grass or moss or some such item. And that's what this photograph reminds me of -- I smile every time I view it. Female Red-winged Blackbirds are pretty easy to identify, as long as they're in the marsh where you'd expect them. But move them into a different habitat and it gets surprisingly hard. I was leading a flock of people on a bird walk once when I noticed a group of mottled brown birds perched in the branches halfway up a tree. Seeing a chance to make mischief, I pointed out the birds and asked my birders to identify them. Gasp -- no one could, but only because they'd never seen them in a tree before. I knew this would happen because, a few days earlier, the same female blackbirds had fooled me.

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