Blue Grosbeak: Large finch, bright purple-blue body, black face, and two wide, brown wingbars. Dark wings, tail. Hops on ground to forage. Gleans from bushes, weeds and trees. Feeds on insects, snails, grains, seeds and fruits. Swift flight, alternates rapid wing beats with wings pulled to sides.
Range and Habitat
Blue Grosbeak: Breeds from California, Colorado, Missouri, Illinois, and New Jersey southward and spends winters in the tropics. Preferred habitats include brushy, moist pastures, and roadside thickets.
It sometimes uses snakeskin as nesting material, which is thought to thwart predators.
It was formerly placed in its own genus, Guiraca. Similarities with buntings in genetics, behavior, molts, and plumages led to its inclusion in the bunting genus Passerina.
The Blue Grosbeak was first described in 1758 by Carolus Linnaeus, Swedish botanist, physician and zoologist.
A group of grosbeaks are collectively known as a "gross" of grosbeaks.
The Blue Grosbeak has a very large range, extending to around 5,300,000 square kilometers and can be found in subtropical and tropical forest or shrubland ecological systems. It is primarily found in North, Central, and South America, but has been seen in places such as Barbados and the Cayman Islands. The global population is believed to be about 7,700,000 birds and does not meet the criteria for the IUCN Red List. The Blue Grosbeak currently has an IUCN evaluation level of Least Concern.