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dead thrushes


 
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Sean Ph'lib
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Joined: 11 Dec 2008
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Location: Co Kerry

PostPosted: Sat Mar 05, 2011 8:19 pm    Post subject: dead thrushes Reply with quote

Last week I found a dead song thrush in my garden. Nothing very odd in that, you would say, but next day I found another one. Now there are song thrushes galore around here, singing day and night, so I assumed these were maybe victims of territorial feuding. Then, tonight, I heard a loud crash; I went outside to investigate and found two song thrushes lying dead, side by side, on the path outside the house. I'm guessing the crash I heard was them striking against a window, but what were they doing flying around in the dark? The windows at the back of the house (where I found them) were all in darkness, so they weren't drawn to the light. Mysteriouser and mysteriouser.... Question
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OffalyGoodLife
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2011 10:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Territorial thrushes do have a bad habitat of blindly chasing each other around, and thrushes (and Blackbirds) are just the right (or, perhaps, wrong) size to kill themselves hitting windows - smaller and larger birds tend to fare a little better. You can get stickers for windows (I think they are called "bird strike silhouettes") if there is a particular problem window.

As for the night-time birds, I wonder if they might have been Redwings rather than our resident Song Thrush? Redwings breed in Scandinavia, but come to Ireland for our milder winter. They tend to migrate at night (safer from predators), and some would still have been on their way home in early March. Otherwise, it may just have been a local pair of Song Thrushes disturbed from roost by something. Can't be certain for either, but no-one else seems to be interested!

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Sean Ph'lib
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Location: Co Kerry

PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2011 10:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

These were Song Thrushes, not Redwings. Actually, I don't think our Redwings come from Scandinavia - I think they come from Iceland. Our Fieldfares do come from Scandinavia. Anyway, whatever the reason, there are Song Thrushes singing here every evening and morning despite the fatalities!
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OffalyGoodLife
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2011 11:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

They come from both but, with the recent very cold winters in the UK, a lot more Scandinavian birds have been pushed further west to Ireland. I was forgetting, or course, that quite a few of our winter Song Thurshes also come from more northerly parts.

At least you still have some around anyway.

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Sean Ph'lib
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2011 11:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think one reason might be this: because I feed the birds heavily during the winter, there is an abnormally high population surviving here into the spring. This leads to a lot of fighting for territories when the breeding season starts. Last week I witnessed two Great Tits fight to the death - and the victor continued to savage his opponent's corpse long after the fight was over! I think my thrushes may have been chasing each other in similar fashion.
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