The Travels of Tug 44

Northern Mockingbird

The Northern Mockingbird is a common grasslands bird most notable for their ability to "mock" the calls of other species. In fact they can learn and play back nearly any sound including your lawnmower.   high-res

Northern Mockingbirds prefer to eat bugs, but when available, fruit will tempt them. They don't migrate and are with us here for all but the very coldest days of winter. During winter, they will eat sumac and other berries.   high-res

This Northern Mockingbird is gorging on honeysuckle berries.   high-res

This Northern Mockingbird has a honeysuckle berry. Note the extra long tail, a good way to identify them.   high-res

A quick swallow and down the berry goes.   high-res

And off she goes, displaying the white patches on the wings. The white patches have a flashing effect as they fly.   high-res

The Northern Mockingbird spreads her distinctive tail as she flies, for cornering.   high-res

The white patches on the Northern Mockingbird are on both the upper and lower surfaces of the wings, which increases the flashing effect during flight.   high-res

When running after bugs on the ground, they sometimes stop every few feet and spread their wings for a moment and then continue on. I haven't seen this behavior myself yet, so this photo is provided by my friend Kevin Bellanger.   high-res

The Northern Mockingbird, a talented singer.

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