Mountain Bluebird & Globe Mallow Flowers

While visiting Albuquerque, New Mexico one year, I took a stroll with some family members along the trails at the base of the Sandia Mountains. I'll never forget the sight of flocks of bluebirds everywhere we went. Swooping and dipping, they made brilliant blue flashes against the desert terrain. That was in the wintertime, so not much was blooming.
Here, I've painted one of these Mountain Bluebirds with Globe Mallow, a wildflower that blooms abundantly in the dry Southwest. Growing as a shrub, it can carpet the ground with its bright orange color.
Here are some interesting facts about the Mountain Bluebird:
*The male is all blue - a breathtakingly brilliant color
*The female is gray with some of that blue in her wings.
*The Mountain Bluebird and Western Bluebird compete for habitat, but human activity is helpful to them and they are expanding their range.
*They prefer wide open spaces such as ranchlands.
*Here is a funny one: The female builds the nest by herself. "The male sometimes acts as if he is helping, but he either brings no nest material or he drops it on the way." (from: All About Birds) *The Mountain Bluebird dominates the Eastern Bluebird in the small areas where the two overlap which is perhaps why the Eastern Bluebird does not expand west. However, in winter, Mountain Bluebirds can be found outside of their area, even coming all the way out here to the East.

  • This painting has been sold.

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