The male is striking in the typical oriole black and yellow plumage, but the female is a drabber green bird. Orioles are shy, and even the male is remarkably difficult to see in the dappled yellow and green leaves of the canopy. In flight they look somewhat like a thrush, strong and direct with some shallow dips over longer distances. The New World orioles are similar in appearance to the Oriolidae, but are icterids unrelated to the Old World birds.

Habitat and Distribution

They breed from Portugal, Spain and France across the United Kingdom and Scandinavia to Poland, Russia, the Balkans, Turkey and West Asia to the Caucasus up to Mongolia and China. They winter in central and southern Africa. Golden Oriole in Western Europe prefer open broadleaf forests and plantations, copses, riverine forest, orchards, large gardens. In Eastern Europe they may inhabit more continuous forest as well as mixed or coniferous forests.


They feed on insects and fruit.


Golden Orioles build neat nests in tree forks and lay 3-6 eggs.

Calls and Songs

Their call is a screech like a jay, but the song is a beautiful fluting weela-wee-ooo or or-iii-ole, unmistakable once heard.