Is this a Cowbird egg?

catherinet

I have a shelter logic shed for my golf cart. Recently I found this nest built on one of the upper supports of the shed. Today I saw that it was a phoebe's nest. I got a picture with my phone from above it, and this is what I found. Of course I immediately assumed it was a cowbird's egg, but I've never seen them so bluish-green. Do any other birds do that? I'm thinking they don't. Can cowbird eggs vary in color like that? I hope I don't scare the phoebe away with my coming and going out of the shed. As she flew out of the shed to a nearby tree, I told her she has nothing to fear from me, but I'm not sure she was listening. :)





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gyr_falcon

There is quite a bit of color variation for cowbird eggs. But cuckoos are also brood parasites. I believe cuckoos have a broader variation of color, with some leaning towards matching to the eggs in the nest to a greater degree (depending upon host bird).

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catherinet

Thanks gyr_falcon. I haven't been hearing any cuckoos yet this spring, but I have seen cowbirds, so I guess I'll assume it's a cowbird egg. Thanks again for your info.

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Old Forester ( Zones 8a-6a ) Ga/NC

Should the cowbird egg be pitched or left alone ?

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gyr_falcon

Unless you have a special permit to do so, it is illegal to remove the egg. Cowbirds are not an introduced species. Whether you follow the law or not is not my call; I'm just passing along info.

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whwo

Our native cuckoos rarely parasitize the nests of other species. It's more common intraspecifically. In addition, both Black-billed and Yellow-billed cuckoos have eggs that are unmarked. Thus, this is a Brown-headed Cowbird egg and as already stated, should be left alone.

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catherinet

Thanks everyone.

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