The painted bunting

Birds & Blooms - - From The Editor -

holds the No. 1 spot on my bird bucket list. I’ve seen hun­dreds of pho­tos of this rain­bow-col­ored beauty, yet I re­main in dis­be­lief that such a stun­ning bird ac­tu­ally ex­ists. And I re­cently learned that I’m not alone in yearn­ing to spot one. We asked our field ed­i­tors and Face­book fol­low­ers to tell us which birds they want to see most. The an­swers in­cluded north­ern car­di­nals, black-billed mag­pies and Cape May war­blers, but the painted bunting pre­vailed. Leti­cia Reed even said, “Spot­ting a male painted bunting would be a dream come true for me!” Flip to page 40 to see our top 10 list and find out where to spot them.

Also in this is­sue, we re­veal the fi­nal­ists in our an­nual Back­yard Photo Con­test. Since the be­gin­ning of July, we’ve looked at thou­sands of bird, bloom and but­ter­fly pho­tos, and some­how we’ve man­aged to nar­row them down to 12. Go to page 53 to see the spec­tac­u­lar snap­shots and find out how you can help us crown a win­ner!

Whether you’re sub­mit­ting con­test en­tries or votes, com­ment­ing on our Face­book posts, or us­ing our In­sta­gram hash­tag (#bird­sand­blooms), we love hear­ing from you. I’m cu­ri­ous—is your bucket list bird miss­ing from our list? Go to bird­sand­blooms.com/sub­mit to tell us which species would make your bird­ing dreams come true.

KIRSTEN SWEET, DEPUTY ED­I­TOR

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