Scott’s Oriole

Icterus parisorum

In summer, we find Scott’s Orioles in the American Southwest. These birds prefer to live in arid regions (deserts and mountain slopes facing deserts). Life for these birds centers on the yucca plant. They weave nests from its fibers and hang them on their live leaves. They eat nectar from its flowers and the insects that live on these desert plants.

San Diego County (California) is blessed with a wide array of habitats, ranging from the arid Colorado Desert in the east, to the Pacific Ocean, and the mountains and valleys that lie between. Each summer, the Anza-Borrego desert hosts Scott’s Orioles. For those willing to brave the heat, the reward can be a meeting with some of these desert-loving birds.

Modern science does not recognise any subspecies of Scott’s Oriole (i.e. they are monotypic).

Some of my favorite meetings with Scott’s Orioles have been in the Anza-Borrego Desert of eastern San Diego County. While working with the San Diego Natural History Museum at Joshua Tree National Park in June 2017, I enjoyed meeting these lovely birds as well.

While I didn’t capture any images, I also met these birds in the Davis Mountains of West Texas in June-2021. I returned to the Davis Mountains in 2023 and managed to capture a few images during that visit.

Range Map for Scott’s Oriole
Range Map

15 Photos

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