Thrushed off our feet

song thrush bathing.JPG

Song thrush, coal drops

This blog features 3 similar-looking birds each with their individual characteristics.  The first two are seen quite frequently on most of our birding ventures, but the third, the redwing, a winter visitor, has been more difficult for us to spot.  However, as we did with the fieldfare, we kept going out until we found one.

The song thrush is a splendid chubby bird with a gorgeous song routine  and adorable markings.  It has a sandy brown back with black speckled whitish underparts, with a tinged buff breast.  A year round resident, it can be seen in woodland areas, parks, gardens and most other open landscapes with trees.

song thrush berries chesterfield canal.JPG

Song thrush amongst the berries, Chesterfield Canal

The nest is a mud-lined grass cup in a hedge or shrub.  It has a sharp “seep” call and a beautiful, melodic, repeated song, usually delivered perched high in the trees.  Eggs are pale blue with black blotches.

mistle thrush.JPG

Mistle thrush, King’s Park

The mistle thrush is the largest of the three.  There’s nothing more I love to hear than its chattering call,  from high up in the trees.

It shows a pale sandy brown chest and underparts, with a brown speckled front and a whitish edged tail.  Another year-round resident, it favours woodland, farmland, parks and gardens with trees.  Its nest is a messy, bulky cup of dry grass and found high up in a tree.  The voice is a rasping “churring”, usually delivered from prominent perches.

redwing ladybridge.JPG

Redwing, Ladybridge

Last but not least, the beautiful redwing is a dark, short-tailed thrush.  The belly is whitish brown speckled, and it carries the characteristic red flanks, which give it its name.  It also has a distinctive creamy buff eye stripe.  A winter visitor, it favours woodland, open fields and grassland.  It can often been seen in groups with fieldfares, and its call is an extended sharp “see -eeep, see – eeep!”, which can be heard at night from migrating birds.

This species took us the longest to track down, but, as you can see, we got a picture in the end!

Blogs coming up will feature many birds depending on the berries that are around at the moment, and, of course, a Christmas robin!

“A thrush in the bush is magnificent and lush!”

We’ve spent many hours getting cold and wet to find these birds.  Hope you enjoy them as much as we do!



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