Indigo Bunting

Male Indigo Bunting

Indigo Bunting
(Passerina cyanea)

Order:  Passeriformes
Family:  Cardinalidae

Photo by Dawn Scranton [CC 2.0]

Indigo Bunting Information

Length:  4.5 - 5.5"

Habitat:  Woodland edges, brushy fields, open deciduous woodlands, woodland clearings, roadside thickets. Prefers area with a few tall trees or other high perches.

Diet:  Insects, spiders, seeds, berries.

   Songs of Indigo Bunting


(Other birds in background)
Audio credit: ---n, Xeno-Canto [CC NC SA 4.0]

Calls and song

(Other birds in background)
Audio credit: ---s, Xeno-Canto [CC NC SA 4.0]

From Cornell Lab:

Another song plus calls of Indigo Bunting

Additional Information

Indigo Bunting
Photo, geographic range, habitat, physical characteristics, reproduction, behavior, food habits, conservation status. (From Animal Diversity Web)

Photos of Indigo Bunting
From Peter LaTourrette's Bird Photo Gallery

Female Indigo Bunting

Female Indigo Bunting

© Howard Cheek

Indigo Bunting
Identification Tips

  • Small, conical bill
Adult male alternate
  • Deep blue plumage (in poor light appears black)
  • Blackish wings and tail with blue edges
  • Basic-plumaged male (Fall and Winter) similar to adult female but often has has some blue feathers
Adult female
  • Dark brown upperparts
  • Warm brown underparts with faint dark streaks
  • Indistinct wing bars
  • Immature plumages similar to adult female-immature male can have blue patches

(Credit: U. S. Geological Survey)

Breeding Bird Survey Map,

Indigo Bunting Breeding Map

(Image credit: USGS)

Range in New England

The Indigo Bunting breeds throughout New England with the exception of northern Maine.

This bird winters mainly in southern Florida, Greater Antilles, Mexico, and Central America.

Christmas Bird Count Map
Historical CBC Map from USGS