Photo: Tim Laman/Vireo

Bicknell's Thrush

Catharus bicknelli

Extremely similar to the Gray-cheeked Thrush, this bird was only recently recognized as a distinct species. It has a limited summer range in the northeast, from upstate New York to Nova Scotia and Quebec, where it nests in short, stunted conifers near the tops of mountains and in dense second-growth woods with many young conifers. Gray-cheeked and Bicknell's thrushes have slightly different songs and different callnotes in flight, but differences in their behavior have not been thoroughly studied. They have separate wintering areas: Bicknell's migrates south to the West Indies, especially the island of Hispaniola, while the Gray-cheeked goes on to South America. With its very limited range, Bicknell's Thrush merits close study and attention from conservationists.
Family Thrushes
Extremely similar to the Gray-cheeked Thrush, this bird was only recently recognized as a distinct species. It has a limited summer range in the northeast, from upstate New York to Nova Scotia and Quebec, where it nests in short, stunted conifers near the tops of mountains and in dense second-growth woods with many young conifers. Gray-cheeked and Bicknell's thrushes have slightly different songs and different callnotes in flight, but differences in their behavior have not been thoroughly studied. They have separate wintering areas: Bicknell's migrates south to the West Indies, especially the island of Hispaniola, while the Gray-cheeked goes on to South America. With its very limited range, Bicknell's Thrush merits close study and attention from conservationists.
Photo Gallery
  • adult
  • adult male
  • immature (1st year)
  • adult



Illustration © David Allen Sibley.
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Text © Kenn Kaufman, adapted from
Lives of North American Birds

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  • All Seasons - Common
  • All Seasons - Uncommon
  • Breeding - Common
  • Breeding - Uncommon
  • Winter - Common
  • Winter - Uncommon
  • Migration - Common
  • Migration - Uncommon
Songs and Calls
Song: nasal, rising at end: whee-wheeoo-ti-ti-whee. Call: down-slurred whee-ah.
Audio © Lang Elliott, Bob McGuire, Kevin Colver, Martyn Stewart and others.
Learn more about this sound collection.

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