Introducing the latest visitor to our backyard: the Gray Catbird. I think they are here to stay, for as while, as there are several of them and they seem to be busying nest building. They are thrashers like the Mocking bird and have brought along lots of interesting songs as well as their own unique cat like sound. As you can see they are mostly a dark-ish gray with a long beak and a black cap. They also have a patch of brown under their tail.
I identified them with my daughter’s trusty Birds (Golden Guide) which is a guide to familiar birds of North America. I love this book because it seems to have all the birds I encounter plus it is small enough (6.1 x 4.5 x 0.3 inches) that I can take it with me.
According to Greg Budney from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, the Gray Catbird uses it’s mimicry skills to attract a mate (surprise, surprise). This is a very interesting video that breaks down a Gray Catbird’s repertoire and directly compares to the bird (or frog in one case!) it is mimicking.
I also made a recording here.
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I have also seen a couple of Eastern Bluebirds around town but haven’t got a good picture yet. What new birds have you seen lately?