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Monday, January 16, 2012

Varied Thrush Sighting Near Paramount Park

Steve Schneider, a professional photographer captured this very clear image  of the Varied Thrush, in his yard just west of Paramount Park.

Varied Thrush feasting on sunflower seeds in backyard habitat
ph credit - Steve Schneider, Shoreline




Varied Thrush

Ixoreus naevius
Turdidae
Common resident west. Fairly common east.

General Description

Similar in size and shape to the American Robin but slighter in build, the Varied Thrush is a boldly patterned bird. In the male, the rust-colored belly and throat are interrupted by a black breast-band; the female has a lighter, grayish band. A similar band lines the face at the eye. A rust-colored stripe lines the head above the eye-band, and the crown is bluish gray, as are the back and tail. The wings are boldly patterned with slate, black, and rust. Female patterning is similar, but the back is brownish.


Habitat

The Varied Thrush is a bird of thick, damp, mossy coniferous forests. Although it prefers dense, wet, old-growth forests, it can be found in a variety of forest types, including mixed forests. During migration and in winter, it frequents ravines and thickets, especially near streams. In winter, it may also be found on lawns and road edges.

Behavior

The Varied Thrush is similar in behavior to the American Robin, but more elusive. Much of its foraging is done on the ground, usually in dense cover, although sometimes it forages on open lawns and roads. The Varied Thrush's song is a unique fuzzy, metallic whistle on different pitches.

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