Monday, 6 October 2014

American Robin (Merle d'Amérique)

Columbia Lake
Waterloo, ON
6 October 2014

     It always seems that after they have finished breeding American Robins Turdus migratorius disappear for a while and are seldom seen on lawns and in gardens as is the case from early spring onward.

     They are always a welcome sight and I think that even for people who are not specifically interested in birds they evoke feelings of warmth. They do not hesitate to nest in close proximity to humans and many a child has had his/her first experience with a wild creature when a pair of robins honoured their backyard with their nest.
     At Columbia Lake this morning I counted nineteen individuals and I think I may have missed a few. They were busy feeding on the grass and on berries in nearby bushes. Most of the birds were adults and I am wondering whether juveniles have formed flocks of their own.
      I was concentrating on photographing the birds on the ground before turning my attention to the berry bushes and the pictures here reflect that. Before I got a chance to take any more shots my battery died! 



  1. It is so much like like a multi-coloured Blackbird, not just in profile but in habits too. The two must be very closely related so somewhere along the millions of years didn't diverge much.
    At the moment I'm waiting for the continental Blackbirds to arrive and pass through the UK.

  2. Replies
    1. You are absolutely right Damian. But you have to remember that the North American Robin is not in fact a robin (see the genus Turdus - thrush). It is in fact a thrush and I think that Phil Slade's sage comments above elucidate its phylogenetic heritage. What happened was that the first European settlers to North America saw this bird with a red breast and called it a robin. The name is never going to change now, it is so ingrained into common usage and even the psyche of North Americans, but it should perhaps more correctly be known as the Red-breasted Thrush.

  3. Hello David,
    Beautiful pictures of American robin they are.
    Perfect photographed.

  4. Great to see David,well done.
    I remember my first sighting,never forget it.