Saturday, March 15, 2008

The American Robin (Turdus migratorius)

The American Robin (Turdus migratorius)

The American Robin (Turdus migratorius)
American Robin From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The American Robin (Turdus migratorius) is a migratory songbird of the thrush family. The similarity between the orange-red coloring of its breast and that of the smaller and distantly related European Robin (Erithacus rubecula) led to its common name. It is widely distributed throughout North America, wintering south of Canada from Florida to central Mexico and along the Pacific Coast. It has seven subspecies, but only T. m. confinis in the southwest is particularly distinctive, with pale gray-brown underparts. It is the state bird of Connecticut, Michigan, and Wisconsin.
The American Robin is active mostly during the day and assembles in large flocks at night. Its diet consists of invertebrates (such as beetle grubs and caterpillars), fruits and berries. It is one of the first bird species to lay eggs, beginning to breed shortly after returning to its summer range from its winter range. Its nest consists of long coarse grass, twigs, paper, and feathers, and is smeared with mud and often cushioned with grass or other soft materials. It is among the first birds to sing at dawn, and its song consists of several discrete units that are repeated.

The adult Robin is preyed upon by hawks, cats, and larger snakes, but when feeding in flocks it is able to be vigilant and watch other birds for reactions to predators. Brood parasitism by the Brown-headed Cowbird occurs, but is rare because the Robin usually rejects the cowbird eggs.

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