Black Phoebe (Sayornis nigricans)
The Black Phoebe is a common resident in southern California, and is frequently found near water (streams, ponds, leaky sprinklers, etc.).
Eyes are dark brown. Legs and feet are black. Male and female show the same plumage, but during breeding season, male has cloacal protuberance and female has brood patch. Juvenile is browner than adults, with pale cinnamon edging and fringing on upperparts.
Depending on the culture, Blackbird Spirit may be welcome as a good omen or the messenger of bad news. The dark wings of Blackbird give it associations with the Otherworld and the great Mysteries that haunt human souls; this also means it can fly as a messenger of death.
Dove. Doves are a sign of good luck. The Romans thought that they could predict the future and often left them as offerings to gods. They also used doves for sacrifice, which was their way of asking the gods for protection and guidance in battle.
Where do Black Phoebes live? The range of the Black Phoebe is from the southern Oregon coast, into California, and down through Central and South America. There are also populations living in parts of the southwestern United States.
The black phoebe is a kind of flycatcher and one that doesn’t migrate much from its home territory. They’re generally considered solitary birds outside of their breeding periods, but they can have up to three breeding seasons in a single year, so that’s a lot of together-time.
The finches added 5 eggs to the 6 phoebe eggs already there, and the two females alternated incubation duties for an entire week before both species abandoned the nest. The oldest Black Phoebe on record was at least 8 years old when it was recaptured and released during banding operations in California in 1981.
Attracting Black Phoebes to Backyards
You cannot do much to attract the Black Phoebe to your backyard, although sometimes they are attracted to mealworms. They are wait-and-sally flycatchers, usually waiting on low perches for an insect to come into view and then flying out, grabbing it and returning to the same perch.
Diet. Almost entirely insects. Feeds on a wide variety of insects including beetles, grasshoppers, crickets, wild bees, wasps, flies, moths, caterpillars. Occasionally eats small fish.
Black Phoebes originally nested in places like sheltered rock faces, streamside boulders, and tree hollows but have adjusted well to human-made structures such as building eaves, irrigation culverts, and abandoned wells. They often reuse the same site (or even the same nest) year after year.
To attract them, grow native plants to attract bugs. Plant native trees that attract birds.
Black phoebe’s primarily consume small wasps, spiders, flies, moths, butterflies and grasshoppers. They have even been known to fish small minnows from shallow water. Say’s and eastern phoebes have similar diets.
Streamsides, farms, woodland edges. In breeding season, typically found near water in woodland or semi-open country. May be limited mostly by availability of good nest sites, which are often along streams. In migration and winter, found around edges of woods, brushy areas, often near water.
Blackbird-The blackbird symbolizes temptation and sin and is even attributed to the devil’s workings. The blackbird signifies darkness and evil. In the Bible the blackbird is sent by Satan himself to tempt humans with worldly desires.
To conclude, bird flying in the house meanings vary but mainly include massive change, freedom, happiness, or even health risk to the house owner. These messages are not guaranteed to happen exactly like what they sound. Instead, they could be reminders, encouragement, or alarming signs.
A bird in a house can be a good omen. It’s not all bad news though. For a bird flying into your home can also have a positive meaning, particularly if it’s a white or brightly, coloured bird. These birds signify good luck and opportunities, or they may be signs of harmony, and protection.
The symbol of a bluebird as the harbinger of happiness is found in many cultures and may date back thousands of years.
Cranes are revered in Asia as symbols of long life. Cuckoos are welcomed as a sign of spring in Europe and are considered omens of a happy marriage.
Although the eastern phoebe is monogamous, meaning that they stay with the same mate for life, they are “loners”. They rarely come in contact with other phoebes, and even mated pairs do not spend much time together, except for occasional roosting in early pair formation.
They commonly reuse nests in subsequent seasons. Females lay 3-6 white eggs, which hatch after about two weeks incubation more or less. Fledglings leave the nest in about another two weeks and are fed usually at waters edge where they learn to forage for themselves. They often raise two broods in a season.
They may roost together early in pair formation, but even during egg laying the female frequently chases the male away from her. The oldest known Eastern Phoebe was at least 10 years, 4 months old. It had been banded in Iowa in 1979 and was found in 1989 in Alberta.
Eastern Phoebes build nests in niches or under overhangs, where the young will be protected from the elements and fairly safe from predators. They avoid damp crevices and seem to prefer the nests to be close to the roof of whatever alcove they have chosen.
The Eastern Phoebe is a plump songbird with a medium-length tail. It appears large-headed for a bird of its size. The head often appears flat on top, but phoebes sometimes raise the feathers up into a peak. Like most small flycatchers, they have short, thin bills used for catching insects.
They abundantly sing out their name, phoe-be, phoe-be! as if announcing nature’s vitality on even a frosty morning. They fly-catch when flies—or moths or mosquitoes—are few and far between, and expand their hunt to snatch prey from blades of grass or the surface of ponds.