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Photographing The Eurasion Golden Oriole

Eschenbach share their knowledge of the Eurasian golden oriole

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eurasian golden oriole

Yellow, black and unmistakable, that's the Eurasian golden oriole. You might struggle to see it at all because this exotic looking songbird is rather discreet and shy.

Appearance

The golden oriole has a unique look in northern latitudes, because it looks like an exotic bird. Many of its closest relatives actually live in the tropics. With its bright yellow body and its black wings, the male golden oriole is pretty hard to mistake with any other bird in Europe. The females are not quite so colourful. Their plumage is rather greenish-yellow and the wings are brownish instead of black. Beak and eyes are pink-red in both sexes.

Distribution

The golden oriole’s breeding range extends over almost all of Europe and parts of Asia. It moves into its South African wintering grounds at the end of August and returns into its northern breeding areas at the beginning of May.

The Oriole likes to breed in light deciduous forests and also appreciate the proximity of water. The European population is concentrated in Eastern Europe. Although the Central European population is less strong, the Oriole population is considered as stable in Europe.

Bird Watching Tips

Even though the Golden Oriole is brightly coloured and even settles in parks, cemeteries and gardens, many birdwatchers have never seen it before. This is because the oriole breeds near settlements but prefers treetops where it is difficult to observe. If you are attentive, however, you will see it in flight: the golden oriole flies fast and wavy, similarly to a Woodpecker.

If you have trouble spotting the oriole, you can also hear it. It is a songbird with a melodious and unmistakable singing. The Golden oriole singing is often described as a beautiful weela-wee-ooo, most of the time it can be heard at dawn.

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