This week’s bird is very common across almost the entire U.S. year-round. They are so common, in fact, that the Audubon Society states that they serve “as a early warning sign of environmental problems, such as the overuse of pesticides.”
Robin’s are very fast flyers, and their cheerful songs can be heard at the very earliest light of morning, especially in the spring and summer. It’s a lovely, lilting song to hear first thing in the morning.
These birds love the bird bath in our back yard, and we’ve seen young birds follow their parents to drink from it. They are very used to human interaction,and so are pretty friendly birds, in my experience, as well. They rarely startle when we’re moving around the yard. They will continue to drink from the fountain or to forage for food, seemingly unconcerned with our presence.
They will often hop along on the ground looking for worms and other insects. They also like to feed on berries and other fruits, especially in the winter. Fruits make up about 60% of their diet.
Mated pairs will set up a nest in a shrub or a tree. Their nests, made mostly by the female, are a cup made of twigs and grasses with mud holding it solidly together. Their eggs are the source of the color name “Robin’s egg blue”, a soft, light blue color. They hatch after about two weeks of incubation by the female, and leave the nest after about two more weeks under their mother’s care. The male will then care for the fledglings while the female lays a second set of eggs.
Robins may be common, but they are quite lovely to look at. They have a beautiful rusty-orange breast, a dark head and back, and a white ring around their eye. Juvenile Robins are really fun to see, too. Their coloring is different in that they have a very spotty appearance on their breast. They’re also – like most juvenile birds I’ve seen – fairly clumsy flyers, making them pretty entertaining to watch.
These birds are frequent back yard visitors, so keep an eye out for them!
Please share your bird photos with the Observer. Send them to mhelean@rrobserver.com