Posted on



Once in awhile I’m able to capture more than a blur of feathers when I’m out in the field. My policy is to click first and ask questions later, so here is my little bird. Can anyone tell me what she is? I think she is a Dickcissel. The habitat is restored open tall-grass prairie.Β  I really liked how she settled herself in the midst of these Compass Plant flowers like the centerpiece in a bouquet. ‘Tis the season of Sylphiums and Liatris, symphonies in yellow and purple.

22 thoughts on “Dickcissel?

  1. I don’t know what it is, but it’s beautiful! I don’t think we have this type of bird here in the Western US. Your painting is lovely. As always I love your color palette.

  2. It’s funny how uncomfortable I feel, putting a bird out there without any solid idea what she is. I had so much fun with the colors in this painting~I’m glad you like it. Thank you!

  3. Very nice. Shoot first and check later. πŸ™‚

    It might be Dickcissel. Females lack the dark V on the chest of the males.

    1. Right, that was the conclusion I drew (or painted, really! πŸ™‚ )

  4. The painting looks lovely, but I can’t see the enlarged version. I’ve tried several ways, but I keep getting a black page and a message that says the image can’t be displayed “because it contains errors.” I’ve gotten that message once or twice before, but I can’t remember if it was your blog or someone else’s. If it were yours, I surely would have said something.

    The colors are pretty, though, and the dickcissel’s a wonderful bird.I’ve seen a few along the coastal prairie during the migration, but I think the ones that are resident are farther inland. A friend with a ranch near Abilene started seeing them about three years ago, and was thrilled.

    I used to confuse them with the meadowlark, but then learned that the meadowlark is much larger, and the songs are quite different.

    1. I am sorry the enlarging won’t work for you. I went back and tried it and it works on mine. I use an Apple, and sometimes what I create doesn’t translate onto other computers. I wonder if that is the problem. Or maybe WordPress was having difficulties at that moment.
      Dickcissels must not be a common bird because I’m not familiar with them at all, and it seems nobody else is either. I’ll make a point of seeking them out, now. I’m glad you like my painting even though you can’t see it properly. Although, sometimes I think my paintings look dorky when they are enlarged. I think the computer distorts proportions somehow.

  5. Lovely painting and like Jim already commented, my go-to source is I think your beautiful art needs no positive ID! πŸ™‚

    1. Oh good because positive I’m not! πŸ™‚ Thank you so much, Eliza.

  6. This is gorgeous. No idea what the bird is but it’s perfect in its environment. I wish I had a hundredth of your talent 😰.

    1. Uh-oh, Andrew, that whooshing sound you hear is the inflating of my head after reading your kind words. Getting her to look a part of things, and not as if I’d just pasted her in, was my main goal. You’ve made my day~thank you.

  7. Beautiful painting :-). A birdy, flowers and bright yellows backed up by moodier greens and mauves!!! Looks like a lovely place to be.

    I remember your slightly abstract dickcissel. I thought about you when I picked up a book about Great Plains birds recently and the author mentioned dickcissels. I’ve never seen one, or any other of the grassland birds mentioned in the book, but I’m enjoying reading the author’s experience of them. I’m not sure but I think your bird may be a bobolink female, because of the yellow stripe on top of her head. I looked at different birds that resembled dickcissels on Whatbird. This is the bobolink page with a picture of a female:

    1. Ha, yeah, a birdy πŸ™‚ I’ve been inspired by you and Laura. That’s right, I did try it in abstract awhile back, didn’t I? You know, I should have thought of a female bobolink, because it is a bit bigger and it is in a site where bobolinks have come back in response to the restoration work. That makes sense! WordPress won’t let me click on your link for some reason but I’ll check it out. I’m so glad you like the painting, Myriam. Thank you πŸ™‚

  8. What a lovely painting. And I think you’re right – I’d say it’s either a female Dickcissel or an immature male. It’s really hard this time of year, when birds aren’t wearing their breeding plumage anymore, and the young ones are big enough to confuse us!

    1. Oh, cool, thanks! When I saw the photo I went confidently to my guides, thinking surely I’d be able to ID such a distinct looking bird. Boy was I in for a surprise!

  9. I am not sure who’s cissel it is, but the painting is quite lovely, Melissa. The bird stands out so well despite all the similar colors in the scene. Absolutely shoot first. The bird may take flight before the question is answered. πŸ™‚

    1. If Dick won’t claim it maybe I need to post it on a bulletin board! Thank you, Steve.

  10. I don’t know what the bird is but the colours in the painting are beautiful, Melissa. You certainly are talented. Well done! πŸ™‚

    1. Yay, I’m so glad you like all my colors! I can never resist. Thank you, Jane.

  11. Great colors in your painting, and all the yellow set off the blues and greens so well.

    The words and the picture make amply clear
    You’re enchanted with this time of the year.

  12. Thank you Steve.
    This time every year
    I stand clear
    For the colors to sing out clear.

  13. The painting enlarged beautifully for me. I hope it is a dickcissel simply because it’s such a lovely sounding name for your lovely bird. πŸ™‚

    1. Oh, good! Thank you. Yes, I agree about the bird πŸ™‚

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.