Red-winged Blackbirds are notably bold, and serveral will often attack larger birds such as a hawk or crow that flies over their nesting area.
The red shoulder patches of the male, hidden under body feathers much of the time, are brilliantly displayed when he is singing. Outside of the nest season, Red-wings sometimes roost in large concentrations.
This species breeds in marshes, brushy swamps, hayfields. Forages also in cultivated land and along the edge of water.