Male bobolink (Dolichonyx orizivorus)
Sometimes when my husband and I are out birding we meet the sharing-est (is there such a word?) birders who tell us about little-known places such as this field where bobolinks return every year to nest. We were in the area at just the perfect time to see many males perched on weeds guarding their females and eggs. Even though it doesn't look like it, they were quite far out in the fields. Yes, I used my zoom lens but I have also cropped the photos to help you see these unusual-looking birds.
Apparently this time of year bobolinks are the only North American birds with black chests and white on on their backs but, when identifying them, I look for the dull yellow patch on the back of the male's head. In a few weeks - after breeding - his feathers will be a drab yellowish brown with bold black stripes, his camouflage colours.
This guy is sitting atop weeds in a hayfield, his mate close by in a nest on the ground, well hidden in the tall grass.