Birda Logo
loading...
A photo of a Western Bluebird (Sialia mexicana), male
Western Bluebird, Male

Western Bluebird

Sialia mexicana

The Western Bluebird (Sialia mexicana) is a small, stocky thrush with a length ranging from 15 to 18 cm. The male is resplendent with bright blue plumage on top and on the throat, contrasted by an orange breast and sides, and a distinctive brownish patch on the back. The underparts are gray, extending to the undertail coverts. Females are more subdued in coloration, with a duller blue body, wings, and tail, a gray throat, and a dull orange breast, leading to a gray belly and undertail coverts. Both sexes possess a thin, straight bill and a fairly short tail. Immature birds are less vivid and sport spots on their chest and back.

Identification Tips

To identify the Western Bluebird, look for the adult male's vivid blue upperparts and orange breast. Females and juveniles are more muted with grayish tones and spotted chests. The species can be distinguished from other bluebirds by the male's blue throat and the absence of orange on the mountain bluebird.

Habitat

This adaptable bird has made a home in a variety of habitats, including coniferous forests, farmlands, semi-open terrain, and even deserts.

Distribution

The Western Bluebird's range is quite extensive, with year-round populations in California, the southern Rocky Mountains, Arizona, and New Mexico, stretching down to Oaxaca and Veracruz in Mexico. During the breeding season, they can be found as far north as the Pacific Northwest, British Columbia, and Montana. Some northern populations migrate to warmer southern areas in winter.

Behaviour

These bluebirds are territorial, with males using their calls to assert dominance over their chosen area and to attract females. They are cavity nesters, often relying on old woodpecker holes or nest boxes, and face competition from other birds for these sites.

Song & Calls

The Western Bluebird's vocal repertoire includes a variety of mating songs, such as "cheer," "chur-chur," and "chup," which are instrumental in courtship and territory defense.

Breeding

Nesting in cavities or nest boxes, the Western Bluebird faces competition and predation, but has shown a preference for nest boxes, which can lead to earlier egg-laying and higher success rates. Clutches typically contain two to eight pale blue to bluish-white eggs, and in favorable conditions, parents may raise two broods per season.

Similar Species

The Eastern Bluebird (Sialia sialis) and the Mountain Bluebird (Sialia currucoides) are close relatives but can be differentiated by throat color and the presence or absence of orange plumage.

Diet and Feeding

Western Bluebirds forage by pouncing on ground-dwelling insects or by catching them in flight. They also consume berries and are known to visit bird feeders for mealworms and other insect offerings.

Conservation status

The IUCN Red List categorizes the Western Bluebird as Least Concern, indicating a stable population without significant immediate threats to its survival.

App logo
Birda is a birdwatching app and community aimed at curious people who want to deepen their connection with nature.

Western Bluebirds on Birda

Photos
Sightings

More Thrushes

Birda Logo

Your birdwatching journey like never before

Connect with nature in minutes
Take a walk, look out of the window and log the birds that you see. Feel good about those little connections to nature.
Discover the joy of birding
Find new birding spots, see more birds, share and celebrate with a like-minded community of nature lovers.
Play your part in saving nature
Logging your birding sightings and sessions turns into positive action for our planet. Every sighting counts.

Birda Blog

What Our Birders Say
SW H
Wonderful App
Birda is my go to app for keeping records of my bird sightings and sessions. It has fantastic information which is great at aiding identification. With all the updates that are coming in the new year, this app is something special.
Leonie
We've been waiting for an App like this
Excellent! We've been waiting for an app like this! Thank you! It would be nice if you could assign additional birds to sessions later!
Trevarthen1
Birda fan
I really enjoy using Birda, all sightings are recorded and photos can be added. There are monthly challenges which help to get you out to record your sightings. The Birda community are great and are happy to help with unidentified bird sightings. Suitable for all ages and experience!
Hip An
Fantastic
Really enjoying Birda where I live i have a lot of Red kites really hard to photograph but I can video are you planning some place on the app where us Birda can post vids🦉🦅
Pdydhdrexgi
Fantastic App
This is a really lovely app, for everyone interested in birds - from newbies to old hands. There is a very friendly feel to the community and you will genuinely learn a lot as you record your sightings and photos. There are lots of badges and competitions to keep you engaged, and a host of really useful features.
Alex J
Friendly and helps to identify birds
Great birding app, good for logging your sightings, also has nice species guide. I'm enjoying the social aspect more than I expected, everyone seems friendly and helps to identify unknown birds. Good mix of newbies and experienced users.
Carrie
Makes you want to spot birds more
I think this app is fun. It makes you want to spot birds more so I guess in a way it encourages you to get out and about instead of sitting in front of the TV.
BCHphotography_
Such a great app!
I didn’t think I could enjoy birding more but this app makes it so much better. Some great features and a really great way to share your sightings with your friends or fellow birders nearby or around the world! ❤️
Chudbond
Love Birda
I love this app. It really encourages you to log your sightings and the community is friendly and helpful.
Birdafan
Ideal Birdwatch Companion
Simply adds to the enjoyment of my birdwatching and helps me record what I’ve seen.
As featured in
Connect with nature,
Find your flock
Download Birda - QR Code
© 2024 All rights reserved