painted bunting

Painted Bunting  (Passerina ciris)

As the season warms up this year, the grays of winter become the colors of spring…and some of those colors are just wild! One of the most colorful songbirds you’ll see in the South is a small finch breed with a secretive story – the Painted Bunting.  In the Eastern US, it is not uncommon to find this vibrant fellow from North Carolina to South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama and Florida. There is very little research on the life histories of Painted Buntings, but we know that the colorful plumes only appear by the second fall of their lives.

Painted Buntings have sweet, cheerful songs with series of short chirps. You might just have to find them by song. Though you’d expect their colorful plumage to give them away easily, Painted Buntings hide rather well in their dense habitat. They like to live in heavy thickets, swampy areas and the edges of fields. Feeding on seeds, they hop around in the dense thicket cover and sometime venture out to feeders in yards or grassy areas with more seed.

Painted Buntings are a Species of Concern in North Carolina, mostly thought to be caused by loss or degradation of breeding habitat. The Breeding Bird Survey has documented a general population decline for the Painted Bunting since 1965*.  Wild South works tirelessly to help preserve and protect wild habitats that house species like the Painted Bunting. Wild South’s mission, encourages people to Enjoy, Value and Protect wild places and wild things. So get outside, fill your bird feeders, use your fields glasses and ENJOY the colors and songs of the Painted Bunting. We promise you’ll love them and when you VALUE this amazing bird, you’ll surely agree that they deserve PROTECTION and admiration!

*****We are inspired by the colors of the Painted Bunting. Their color is so dissimilar from typical camouflage and makes you smile when you see them! Our friends at ENO are enamored with these birds and they even have hammocks that are similarly colorful – evoking a bright smile as you RELAX!  Wild South partners with ENO to protect wildlife like the Painted Bunting. The Infamous Stringdusters have also become outstanding partners in conservation. On their current tour, the band is providing some proceeds to The Conservation Alliance and the band members are deeply rooted in the outdoors.

We care about the great outdoors because it’s always been a big part of our lives, from long before the band got going,” says Pandolfi, who previously worked as a fly fishing guide and also holds a degree in Environmental Studies from Dartmouth College. “Though it was musical interests that brought The Stringdusters together, we quickly realized that outdoor recreation and sustainability were common threads not just between the five of us but also our growing audience.”

Thanks to great partnerships, we can engage people and inspire them to enjoy, value and protect the wild character and natural legacy of the South!  

female bunting