Painted Bunting Passerina ciris

  • Order: Passeriformes
  • Family: Cardinalidae
  • Polytypic: 2 subspecies
  • Authors: Thomas S. Schulenberg

Demography and Populations

Across the United States breeding range of Painted Bunting, Breeding Bird Survey results show a long-term (1966-2003) decline at an average rate of -1.6 %/year (Sauer et al. 2007).  The long-term decline of -1.6 %/year, while worrisome, masks some interesting counter-trends. There was a significant decline of -2.8 %/year, across the range of Painted Bunting, between 1966 and 1979; but the general trend, across the United States range of the species, is of stabilization or slight increases between 1980 and 2005. Statistically significant declines are evident in Breeding Bird Survey data from the South Texas Brushlands and East Texas Prairies physiographic strata, which contribute to an overall pattern of decline across Texas. At the same time, the Breeding Bird Survey data also show statistically significant increases for the Rolling Red Plains physiographic stratum, which is centered on north central Texas and western Oklahoma, and for the state of Oklahoma. The Breeding Bird Surveys do not show statistically significant population trends for the eastern population of Painted Bunting; but Breeding Bird Surveys probably do not adequately sample the coastal habitats where eastern Painted Buntings breed in the greatest densities, and so these surveys may not be very sensitive to population trends in this critical region (Sykes and Holzman 2005).

In captivity, Painted Buntings have lived for up to 17 years 7 months. The oldest age reported for a free-ranging bunting is 12 years.

Recommended Citation

Schulenberg, T. S. (2009). Painted Bunting (Passerina ciris), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA.