|Conservation status||Has disappeared in many coastal areas with increasing urbanization, but still fairly widespread and common.|
|Family||Mockingbirds and Thrashers|
|Habitat||Chaparral, foothills, valley thickets, parks, gardens. Within its range, found in practically any lowland habitat with dense low brush. Most common in chaparral, also occurs in streamside thickets and in suburban neighborhoods that have enough vegetation. Extends into edges of desert regions, and in chaparral in mountains up to about 6,000'.|
Forages mostly on the ground, using its heavy curved bill to flip leaf-litter aside and to dig in the soil.
3-4, sometimes 2. Pale blue, evenly spotted with pale brown. Incubation is by both parents, about 14 days. Young: Both parents feed nestlings. Young leave the nest after about 12-14 days, are unable to fly well for several more days. Male may care for young from 1st brood while female begins laying 2nd clutch. 2 broods per year, perhaps sometimes 3.
Both parents feed nestlings. Young leave the nest after about 12-14 days, are unable to fly well for several more days. Male may care for young from 1st brood while female begins laying 2nd clutch. 2 broods per year, perhaps sometimes 3.
Mostly insects and berries. Feeds on a wide variety of insects, including ants, wasps, bees, beetles, caterpillars, moths, and many others. Also eats some spiders and centipedes. Berries and small fruits are important in diet, and eats seeds, acorns, and other plant material. Will come to bird feeders for miscellaneous scraps.
Pairs may remain together on territory all year. Male sings to defend nesting territory, usually from top of shrub or tree; song often includes imitations of other birds. Nest: Placed in a dense shrub or extensive thickets, less than 10' above the ground, usually 2-4' up. Nest (built by both sexes) is a bulky open cup of sticks and twigs, lined with fine grass, weeds, rootlets, strips of bark, and other soft items.
Text © Kenn Kaufman, adapted from
Lives of North American Birds
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Strictly permanent resident, rarely wandering even a short distance from breeding areas.
- All Seasons - Common
- All Seasons - Uncommon
- Breeding - Common
- Breeding - Uncommon
- Winter - Common
- Winter - Uncommon
- Migration - Common
- Migration - Uncommon
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Songs and CallsSong recalls that of a Northern Mockingbird, but harsher, more halting, and less repetitious. An expert mimic. Call a low harsh chuck and a throaty quip.
Learn more about this sound collection.