Baltimore’s Famous Birds
Today we’re celebrating Baltimore’s incredible birds. In addition to being iconic mascots for our local sports teams, orioles and ravens are also native species!
Published October 14, 2017
The Baltimore oriole is Maryland’s official state bird. The oriole gets its name from its bold orange and black plumage–the same colors as those on the coat-of-arms of Lord Baltimore.
These birds can be found in leafy deciduous trees in open woodland, forest edge, orchards and stands of trees along rivers, in parks and in backyards. Each spring, male orioles sing from treetop perches to attract a mate. Their distinctive song, a series of whistles, is often the first indication of their presence.
The orioles’ diet consists of fruit, nectar and insects, such as caterpillars, which can help protect forests from destructive pests! Orioles can be enticed to visit with feeders filled with oranges, nectar or peanut butter.
The raven is the largest of all perching birds, usually ranging in size from 22 to 27 inches. This bird can be found in deciduous and evergreen forests, as well as high desert, sea coast, tundra and grasslands. They do well around people, particularly in rural areas but can also be found in towns and cities.
Ravens are highly intelligent and can use their beak to rip objects open, helping them find food and shelter. Ravens are effective hunters that sometimes use cooperative team techniques to hunt down prey too large for a single bird. They will feed on everything from small mammals to nesting birds, eggs and berries.
Learn more about how you can protect these birds in Baltimore and beyond at aqua.org/care.