A Baltimore Oriole Who Didn’t Migrate

Last Updated on May 11, 2024 by Nancie

Juvenile Male Baltimore Oriole on Feeder
Juvenile Male Baltimore Oriole On Feeder

It is January in Maryland and I have a Baltimore Oriole hanging out in my back yard. Most orioles migrate south in the winter, although each year a rare few stick it out through the Mid-Atlantic winter (and even more northern spots) and don’t migrate.

Estimated reading time: 6 minutes

A juvenile male, this Baltimore Oriole showed up in my yard on December 23rd as I was cooking for our upcoming Christmas Eve celebration. I wondered why this Baltimore Oriole didn’t migrate and what in the world it could be eating. He’s come by at least daily ever since. While I still don’t know why he didn’t migrate with the rest, I have learned of at least some of this oriole’s unusual winter diet.

While I live just south of Baltimore, Baltimore Orioles are not usually found in my yard. Even in the warmer months when they are typically found in Maryland, Baltimore Orioles are often not easy to see, as they typically hang out high in the tree tops. I’ve put out orange halves at times over the years, but never had an oriole visit my feeders until now. But this Baltimore Oriole not only didn’t migrate, he also doesn’t eat oranges!

Male Juvenile Baltimore Oriole in Safflower Filled Feeder
Male Juvenile Baltimore Oriole in Safflower Filled Feeder

Baltimore Oriole Eating Safflower

I’ve watched this oriole almost every day for the past month. Most days he shows up for a little while a couple of times. Lately, as it has gotten colder, he’s been spending longer stretches of time here.

I have four platform feeders in the back yard, two mounted on poles and two hanging from a pole. All of these feeders are full of only safflower seed. The oriole begins at one of the farther feeders, poking through the seed, then moves on to the next, cycling through the four feeders and the ground underneath it.

Male Juvenile Baltimore Oriole in Safflower Filled Feeder
Male Juvenile Baltimore Oriole in Safflower Filled Feeder

But what is he eating? If you look up orioles in your field guide, online bird sites or Feederwatch’s interactive Food and Feeder Preferences guide, you will learn that Baltimore Orioles mostly eat insects and fruit. Suggestions for luring one to your feeders revolve around offering fruit, sugar water or suet. Not a word is said about seed and I suspect that their bills aren’t really made for seed eating. This little guy isn’t cracking open his own seed. Instead his strategy is to look for broken bits of seed, cast off by other birds.

Orange and Jelly
Orange and Jelly

Offering the Baltimore Oriole Fruit

Now, I know what orioles are “supposed” to eat and so I’ve tried to help him out. I’ve tried putting out a fresh orange half. Not interested. Banana? Nope. A slice of apple? No. Fresh blueberries and raspberries? Not even a nibble. I tried strawberry preserves, orange marmalade and grape jelly. He seems blissfully unaware that any of these are foods he might like or use for energy.

I speculate that because this oriole is young and didn’t migrate to the tropics as most of his species does in the winter, he may never have seen an orange or a banana. And the jellies might also not look like food. But a raspberry? Surely? Nope.

Jelly and an Oriole Fruit and Jelly Feeder
Jelly and an Oriole Fruit and Jelly Feeder

Yesterday I went to Mother Nature’s, my local bird store to buy a small bag of Nutra-Saf seed, thinking that as this juvenile oriole seems to be focused on eating safflower seed, maybe the thinner hulled Nutra-Saf version might be easier for him to manage on his own. I also bought a new oriole feeder with a dish for jelly and coiled wire for mounting fruit on. So far I haven’t seen this oriole give any of these offerings the slightest bit of interest. Sigh. (2024 Note: Mother Nature’s has just converted to a Wild Birds Unlimited Store.)

Baltimore Oriole Eating Sunflower Seed in a Cage Feeder
Baltimore Oriole Eating Sunflower Seed in a Cage Feeder

Baltimore Oriole Eating Sunflower

BUT! This morning I looked out the window and watched the Baltimore Oriole figure out how to slip through the wire openings of one of the nearer Woodlink cage feeders where I offer sunflower hearts to small birds. Once inside, he sat for quite a while eating sunflower seed!

Oriole Under Feeder
Oriole Under Feeder

What Birds are “Supposed” to Eat

It just goes to remind me (once again) that birds will eat things they are not “supposed” to eat if they are hungry enough. I don’t know if this non-migrating Baltimore Oriole will thrive on a winter diet of seed, but he’s made it through the past month. Through watching other birds, he is working things out and trying new things. I still have hope that at some point he’ll try the fruit.

2020 Update: After about a month, this Baltimore Oriole disappeared and I haven’t seen him since. My hope is that he flew south but I have no way of knowing. If you have an Oriole at your winter feeder, do check out the comments below where several bird watchers have shared the foods they have tried to help Orioles at their feeders get through the winter.

2021 Update: I’ve added addition sources about Baltimore Orioles below.


Learn More About Baltimore Orioles

There are some interesting resources online where you can learn more about Baltimore Orioles, what they more typically eat and their movements.

All About Birds: Baltimore Oriole Identification (Includes ID, life history, range maps and sounds.)

Audubon: Baltimore Oriole (Field Guide: ID, General info.)

eBird Abundance Status and Trends Map: Baltimore Oriole (Map showing relative abundance of Baltimore Orioles during non-breeding period. Also see: eBird Range Status and Trends Map: Baltimore Oriole for the non-breeding period.)

Audubon: 10 Fun Facts About Baltimore Orioles (“From their brief taxonomic hiatus to their intense sugar cravings, there’s a lot to know about these brilliant birds”)

Feederwatch Food & Feeder Preferences Interactive (Interactive where you can pick Baltimore Oriole and see what they typically eat and feeders they like.)

Journey North: Baltimore Oriole (Citizen Science tracking project.)

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51 thoughts on “A Baltimore Oriole Who Didn’t Migrate

  1. Did your oriole survive the winter. I am in Eastern Ohio about 45 minutes from Pittsburgh and I have an Oriole. I first saw him on Dec 1 2020. I put out jelly and he has been eating it as well as picking through the seed for sunflower hearts and bits of shelled peanuts. I have tried mealworms since I know they like insects but so far he isn’t interested.

    1. Hi Michelle,
      I am not sure to be honest. He hung around my feeders for about a month. Then he disappeared. My hope is that he decided to continue south where it is warmer, but I really don’t know. The Oriole I had didn’t seem interested in the jelly or fruit I put out, but was eating the sunflower hearts. They are also supposed to eat suet although the one here didn’t seem to eat it.
      Hope your Oriole does well,

    2. I am in south central New Jersey and I have a pair of Orioles who have been here for a week now. They eat from my tube feeder and have just started eating a homemade blend of cherry, strawberry and blackberry jelly.
      I put out dried mealworms for them but they are not interested. They’re also not interested in Craisins. I am concerned about them in the colder months. I had a juvenile male here late February – April who I fed the same way. He disappeared after April. Will they eat shelled sunflower seeds?

      1. Hi Ellen,
        The one that came to my feeders last year seemed to be poking around in the safflower seed and was definitely eating the sunflower hearts without the shell. The guy I had wasn’t interested in the (purchased) grape jelly I offered. I’m glad your are enjoying your homemade blend!

        It is interesting that some Orioles do seem to stay behind each year when the other migrate. I wish I understood why. I do wonder if Orioles are reacting to our feeders and sticking around because there is food to be found there. If they can survive the winter, avoiding an energy taxing migration might have benefits. Maybe?

      2. I am in Lockport Manitoba Canada and have a female or immature male Baltimore Oriole eating from a no mess seed cylinder from wild birds unlimited. It contains sunflower seeds with no shells. There are orange halves out too it has eaten from.

        1. Hi Everlyn,
          It’s fun to see an Oriole at your feeders. I saw one very briefly in my yard here in Maryland about a week or so ago. They seem to be arriving back after their tropical winter vacation. They don’t typically hang out in my yard in the summer, so I’m a little jealous of your visitor. : )

          1. They are just passing through on migration. Usually do about this time every year but this spring has been very wet and cold so they are looking for food.

  2. Hi Michelle. It’s Pam and Ives. We are in central New Jersey and recently have 2 male Orioles that did not migrate. Appeared around late November. We see them everyday, and they eat oranges, grape jelly, and we have seen them eat at the finch feeder and the woodpecker feeder.

    We are worried about real winter – January and February when the snow and cold will be here. But so far so good.

  3. I’m in Montgomery Village, MD and I’ve tried to attract Orioles in the summer before with no results. I had one come and grab some peanut chips from a feeder today in the snow. He wasn’t a juvenile either. I just put out some grape jam and a mandarin orange cut in half hoping he comes back if he’s staying in the area and needs food.

    1. Hi Megan,
      This was my experience too. My guess is that the local Orioles probably find plenty to eat in the area in the summer and may not really need to come to our feeders. Hunting for food in the winter is obviously more challenging, so I think if they are hungry they are willing to come and see what we have to offer. I really don’t know why most orioles (at least in this area) tend to migrate south but some don’t.

  4. Hi Nancie and everyone,
    We live on Mason’s Island in Mystic CT and always have a bunch of Baltimore Orioles all summer at our Oriole feeders. The males leave in August and the females and young usually follow in September. This year is different. We still have 3 females. There were 4 at the beginning of December, but we’ve only seen 3 since December 13. They are surviving on grape jelly and red grapes, ours have never been fond of oranges. Lately, I’ve seen one on a tube feeder eating hulled sunflower seed. This is a first for us. Last night we had our first nor’easter and have a foot of snow. It was wild all night with temperatures in the 20’s, but they were chattering for food as we shoveled out this morning. The temperatures will be dropping into the teens over the next couple of days so I fear for them. We keep hoping they’ll fly south during the night. I’m so glad to have found your postings to know we’re not alone is this misadventure. We’ll add some peanut hearts and mealworms to their feeder and maybe peanut butter, just in case it will help them. I just don’t know how to keep them warm at this point.

    1. Hi Christie,
      I know the feeling. I kept hoping the little guy at my feeders would head south too. I think all we can do is what you are doing: try to help them out by offering foods they might eat and hope they make it. Maybe the cold weather will give them a nudge to head south.

  5. Hi again,
    I put out freeze dried meal worms and they went for them, I’ve had to refill the dish twice. The trick to feeding the worms is to rehydrate them first by soaking them in warm water for 15-20 minutes. The other thing I learned several years ago, is our Orioles prefer the grape jelly with corn syrup, they refused the all fruit grape jelly even though I was sure it would be better for them. Thanks for the help on this. We’ll see what happens when the temperatures go down to 15 tonight.

    1. Thank you for advice. It’s 12 degrees this morning in New Jersey and all three are out early with the other birds. We bought some dried meal worms and are soaking them. We put out more oranges and jelly. Every night they make it is kind of a miracle. So we will see.

    2. Hi Christie,
      Interesting. I can see how re-hydrating the mealworms might make them more appealing. I wonder if they are preferring the corn syrup version of the jelly because there might be a different level of sugar for energy? It does seem that if one type doesn’t appeal to them that it is definitely worth experimenting with another.

  6. Good Morning,
    I work at a Wild Birds Unlimited store in Allentown,Pa and I have had a couple of customers recently report that they too have Baltimore Orioles at their feeders still. Both customers have told me that the Orioles are eating their bark butter and bark butter bits which are a spreadable suet and a suet nugget. I have also been told they are eating from their seed cylinders more than likely picking out the hulled sunflower chips. It does make sense for them to be eating these types of things because they are higher in fat and protein which birds need in order to survive the long winter nights. I stumbled across this page and thought I would let you all know. I hope it helps. I also know from experience that Baltimore Orioles love our fruit cake suet.

    1. Will the orioles eat the suet out of a suet feeder? And what is bark butter and bark butter bits? I would like to keep my poor orioles alive this winter and they don’t seem interested in rehydrated mealworms. I’m also having a problem with squirrels who have discovered the jelly, so I now need to purchase a proper oriole jelly feeder.

      1. Hi Ellen,
        When the oriole visited my yard last winter, I never saw him get onto the upside-down suet feeders. I was not using regular traditional cage feeders so I can’t say if they will use those. The oriole I saw got into the platform feeders regularly and (surprisingly to me) eventually into a Woodlink cage feeder to eat seed.

        From Melanie’s comment, it sounds like the Bark Butter is a spreadable version of suet that you could smear on bark or other surfaces. If you have squirrels, you’d want to try to find a surface that squirrels can’t get to or they will probably get into it. The Wild Birds Unlimited website does show that there is a Hot Pepper version that might deter squirrels though. (I’ve found that my local squirrels will mostly avoid hot pepper except when they are really hungry.) The Bark Bits are another WBU product that seems to be small bits of suet that can be offered in platform feeder or probably other feeders. I’ve never tried either of these products myself, although they sound interesting.

        I’ve seen various types of birds pick up bits of suet from the ground before. So in the past, I’ve tried cutting a regular suet block into a smaller chunk or chunks to put into a platform feeder, but I never saw any interest from any of the birds when I tried it. Not sure why. I have seen that sometimes some birds aren’t that experimental and don’t always try something that we humans think they might like. Or maybe it was just something about the way I was offering it.

  7. We, too, have had a pair of Orioles for 4 weeks now. I was surprised to see them eating from the tube feeder and woodpecker feeder. Our tube feeder is filled with No-Mess (no shells) bird seed from WBU. The woodpecker feeder is filled with Bark Butter Bits (the kind w/o mealworms and NOT the hot pepper version) from WBU. We eventually put out oranges…they eat those as well. I’ve yet to see them eat shelled peanuts. I’m not sure their beaks can break it down to eatable bits.

  8. Hello again,
    I have an Oriole feeder that has 2 upright posts in the base that are designed for oranges, which ours absolutely refuse to eat for some reason. In the past I’ve hollowed out the oranges and used them for additional jelly, but we’re not going through 2 lbs a day with just 4 birds, so I’ve made a small hole in the bottom of a shallow plastic condiment cup and mounted one on each post. I put the re-hydrated meal worms in one and some Lyric Fine Tunes Blend (online) in the other. It is a blend of tiny peanut hearts, sunflower chips, pumpkin seed chips and other small bits suitable for smaller beaks. They seem to go for it and I find bits splashed into the grape jelly. Of course the Chickadees have found it too and so now it is an Oriole/Chickadee feeder.

    I liked Melanie’s suggestion and rigged up a piece of fruit cake suet, but no interest and it scared them off. Like Nancie said, I’m not sure if our birds are not daring enough to try it or maybe it was my presentation. I’ll try dicing it up into bits, but not sure where to put it with all the other offerings at this point. Maybe mix it into the Fine Tunes Blend and see what happens.

    It looks like our 4 birds have no intention of migrating at this point. The Audubon birders visited yesterday to include them in the annual count. Here on the coast, the temperatures have been unusually mild overall, but we’ve had teens and 20’s at night and of course one big Nor’easter which didn’t seem to make them reconsider. Other than that, we’ve been lucky to just have rain events so far.

    Happy New Year to all. Thanks to Nancie for providing this forum and for the advice. It will be interesting to know if all of these birds make it until Spring.

    1. Hi Christie,
      I’m happy that I can provide a spot where we can share our experiences. Hoping for a mild winter to help these guys out!

  9. Hi Nancie and commenters, I’m in Toronto (Canada) and have had a Baltimore Oriole visiting my feeders since about November 15, 2020, when I spotted her eating at a suet cage. As of today (January 5, 2021), she’s still coming around, but the only thing she eats now are live mealworms and peanuts which she “grates” with with beak into tiny pieces. She no longer eats suet, and doesn’t seem interested in chopped dried cranberries, shelled sunflower seeds, jelly or fruit. (The Orioles did go crazy for oranges and grape jelly all summer. Now this one seems only interested in fats and proteins, which makes perfect sense given that she will need to really fatten up in order to survive our very cold winters.) She has a feeder and heated bird bath of her own, right up against my dining room window. I’ve posted several videos of this. Here’s one: https://youtu.be/XL07Fs8aMco . I’d really love to hear updates from anyone who continues to see Orioles in northern areas, so I’m hoping people will post information in the upcoming weeks (and hopefully months).

  10. I live in southern PA and until last Monday also had an oriole visiting my feeders. I read with interest the comments here, because I was so amazed to have an oriole also at my feeder. I was wondering if your birds are still visiting?

    1. My female is still here. The male is gone but prior to his departure I saw a second female, so I had 3 for a brief time. Now it’s down to 1. She eats jelly from an oriole feeder and picks other things out of the regular feeder. Not interested in the oranges or mealworms. I’m in NJ.

    2. Hi Joan and everyone else,

      Yes, the female Baltimore Oriole is still visiting my Toronto back yard daily. She eats mealworms, peanuts, and sometimes pieces of a “no mess” seed mix. She has a heated birdbath that she drinks from daily. Temperatures will be plummeting starting tonight, and I’m keeping my fingers crossed that she will be okay.

      I noticed in eBird counts that there is an Oriole in Quebec listed, and two in Nova Scotia. On Twitter I’ve found several people in northern states with wintering Orioles as well — almost all female.

      I wonder how the other wintering Orioles are doing!

  11. Hello!
    We started to notice one Male Oriole in November. We then had 2 other males join, coming daily—all three sometimes on the same feeder! However over the weekend only two were here, and today only one, (we think, it’s hard to tell). We are in New Jersey, so still unusual and quite special for us in winter.

  12. It would be interesting to know if what we are seeing is just within historic rare bird sightings (with us being the lucky ones to see them) or if there is an increase in numbers of overwintering Baltimore Orioles. Just browsing eBird’s map for Baltimore Orioles for the Dec-Feb period for my own area from 2010 – 2011, 2011-2012 . . . . 2020-2021, it does look like more sightings. . . . . but that might just reflect the increasing popularity of recording sightings in ebird. Cornell’s Birds of the World page guesses that most of these birds probably don’t survive, but I’m not sure there has been banding/tracking to really know for sure. My guess though is that these birds’ best chance to survive the winter is food at our feeders.

  13. Hi Nancie,
    I agree that without any definitive study, it is hard to know whether these birds will make it through. If and when they disappear we cannot be sure whether they flew off somewhere else or perished. I guess we can hope that we are still seeing them in March and that will tell us a lot. We still have our 4 females here in Mystic and think we may have possibly added a 5th today. So far, our temperatures in twenties at night haven’t put them off, but that is going to change dramatically tonight as the temperatures will be going as low as 10ºF tonight and continue that way for the next 3 days. Following that, we are expecting a snow event, possibly a nor’easter so the next few days will be the biggest test they’ve faced to date. We can only hope that they make it with the help of the heated birdbath and a constant supply of mealworms, suet bits and Lyric Fine Tunes. Keep hope alive. I’ll let you know if we see them on Tuesday.

  14. Well, it is February 3 and the Orioles are still looking healthy. The single digit temperatures and all of the snow haven’t put them off. We’ve seen all 4 together today, and then possibly a 5th alone. With today’s sunshine, our temperatures in the 30’s seem balmy after the last week. The local ground hog predicted an early spring yesterday, so maybe they’ll all make it. Of course we have another nor’easter coming this weekend so I’m not sure if my husband and I will at this point.

  15. Dear Nancie and Christie,
    Our remaining 2 are still here too! We put a lot of extra effort during the weekend to make sure the feeders were always full of jelly and meal worms (which the Starlings enjoyed also, ugh). There was plenty of activity on all of our feeders but I noticed the Orioles also visited the finch seed mix from time to time (a first), so that was interesting. Again, continue to hope for the best because as you said, it’s only February and more storms are coming.

  16. Just an FYI: I updated this post to include additional links to some really interesting eBird abundance and range maps for Baltimore Orioles. Basically, “Relative abundance is the estimated number of individuals detected by an eBirder during a traveling count at the optimal time of day.” On the other hand, “The range map depicts the boundary of the species’s range, defined as the areas where the species is estimated to occur within at least one week within each season.”

  17. Hi everyone – my one male oriole is still hanging around in Montgomery Village, MD. After the first sighting during the snow in Decembder, I didn’t see him for a few weeks – so I thought maybe he migrated, but then he found the grape jam I put out for him, and I see him multiple times a day now. Unfortunately in the last two weeks the starlings have shown up. This happens every year at the end of January – a rowdy flock of starlings shows up, terrorizes my feeders and throws tons of millet and other seed on the ground. Then a couple weeks later they disappear with the exception of the occasional 1-2 visitors. The oriole seems none too pleased with the starlings – most of the time it doesn’t bother him since the jam is a couple feet away from the feeders the starlings focus on, but sometimes there are so many of them and they’re making a ruckus, so he shows up, looks around and then takes back off and waits until there’s a lull in their activity. I’m just glad he’s making it and doing well in the cold weather. He’s a bright spot in my winter.

  18. I’m sorry but the pictures you provide are not of a Baltimore Oriole but instead are that of a golden finch. It’s a full grown male and it’s golden feathers are already starting to come back in. I the winter time they turn a green color. Still a great find. Provide him with sunflower seeds now and thistle when it starts to stay warm.

    1. Hi Todd,
      Thank you for your comment. This was indeed a Baltimore Oriole and not an American Goldfinch though. While there is some similarity in coloring between the two species, this bird was MUCH bigger than the dozens of American Goldfinches that hang out in my yard. Also, the coloring of the wings are very different between this juvenile oriole and a non-breeding American Goldfinch and in the picture where the bird is flying, you can see the tail color is different as well. Goldfinches also do not eat safflower. I did struggle a bit to confirm that he was a male juvenile and not a female oriole though, as they have very similar coloring. The black throat patch (hard to see in the photos) is what decided that for me.
      Good wishes,

  19. PS: Thinking about when I originally identified this bird: When I first saw him, eBird flagged the sighting as rare or uncommon (can’t remember which at the moment) so one of the folks who monitors sightings for eBird reached out to me to ask for more info on the bird and photos. He was actually hoping it might have been a stray Bollock’s Oriole (which would be an even cooler sighting here in a Maryland winter) but after seeing my photos, agreed that it was a Baltimore Oriole.

  20. Hi Nancie,
    I agree that your photos are definitely of Baltimore Orioles. Your photos look the same as the 4 or 5 birds here which the Audubon observers counted as Baltimore Orioles on January 2 this year. We also have flocks of American Goldfinches here year round and you have pointed out some of the differences. Even though I am an experienced birder, I am still learning everyday. Whenever I’m in doubt, I agree that the Cornell Lab of Ornithology (eBird) is a great resource. I especially like that they help identify the birds with recordings of the various calls and songs.

    1. Hi Christie,
      I’ve had my share of mistaken IDs. But eBird has turned out to be a great tool for catching possible errors. There have been some times where I thought I had figured out the ID, only to have it flagged as rare when I clicked on the bird in my eBird list. Then I’d pause and triple-check it again. Sometimes I was confident I was right (usually if I’d seen the bird before), but a few times it forced me to look closer and I realized that the bird I was seeing was actually a similar (and probably more common) bird in my area. So I am always really glad for a reality check! LOL. I was glad that the eBird monitor did follow-up with me on the Oriole. I never complain about a second set of eyes on a bird! That’s one time when taking pictures can really help out. I like Cornell’s resources too. It’s a really rich resource.

    1. What a wonderful article! Thank you for sharing! I still have at least one Oriole here in central NJ. It’s think it may be a juvenile male since it seems to be more vividly colored than a female yet lacks the black head. There were still two orioles a few days ago, but one of them spent an entire day at the feeder and totally gorged itself on everything there (oranges, mealworms, and jelly) so I think it was preparing for a trek somewhere warmer (good luck with that!!)

    2. My lone male oriole in Montgomery Village, Maryland is doing well. He’s not a juvenile – and is in fact bright orange and black. I have never used eBird – so I’m not sure if I need to report my sightings of him to anyone. He’s going through the jam. I’ve been putting out mealworms but the starlings seem more interested in them than my oriole is.

      My feeders are on my condo balcony- which backs to woods and I work from home and my desk is next to the sliding glass doors. Today I glanced up from my laptop to an adult female Cooper’s Hawk sitting perched on my balcony railing. I caught 5 or 6 pictures on my phone before she noticed me and took off. This is not the first time I’ve seen a hawk trying to hunt at my feeders but this was definitely the longest one went without noticing me. She didn’t get any birds at my feeders today though.

      1. Hi Megan,
        Yes, starlings do LOVE mealworms! I always have mixed feelings when I see a Cooper’s in the yard. I’m glad when they don’t catch one of the birds at my feeders but at the same time, I do know that they have to eat too. Sigh.

        Glad to hear your oriole is hanging in there.

  21. 2/22/21 Columbus NJ (south central)
    I now have 3 orioles!! They are either females or perhaps juvenile males. All 3 come to the feeder at the same time. I am thrilled that at least two have been here all winter and it will be interesting to see if they stick around when it gets warmer.

    1. Hi Ellen,
      I’m glad your orioles are doing well and hanging out together. The weather is starting to hint warmer, so hopefully they will continue to do well and stick around. : )

  22. Good news, spring is here and all 4 of our Orioles made it. We’re breathing a big sigh of relief. As exciting as it was having them here in Mystic Connecticut all winter, we hope they go south at the end of the summer this year. Thanks again Nanci for establishing this forum so we can all share our experiences. It really helped to know that others were seeing the same phenomenon and we’ve learned a lot. When we heard from Stella in Toronto and watched her video, we took heart that if she could keep an Oriole alive in her frigid temperatures, we might have a chance here. Thanks everybody, it was quite a thrill. Enjoy the summer.

    1. Thanks to Nanci and this informative site. Two of our Orioles made it since November through a particularly harsh winter in New Jersey. I also agree that that it was helpful to know that there were others out there with a special backyard bird experience this year. It was stressful at times but I went from a casual bird fan to rather avid enthusiast because of this. Hopefully the Orioles will migrate this year. However, given everything that was going on this past year, and home working, it was a gift. After a snow storm or early frigid morning, it was simple joy to see them eagerly scarfing jelly and orange slices.

  23. I have the same predicament. One week ago, January 16th, a juvenile Baltimore oriole showed up at my feeders here in Massachusetts. It took me a few minutes to realize what it was because it was way to early for it to be a oriole. Sure enough its a juvenile oriole. It do offer enough of a variety of food to help wintering birds and saw him eating peanut butter suet. I brought some grape jelly and orange slices out and within a short time he began eating them. It’s been a week now and he’s doing fine but providing orange slices has been a challenge because they’ve been freezing solid due to the freezing temperatures. So I’ve had to change out the orange every couple hours.

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