[Tweeters] alert Varied Thrushes

edswan edswan at thurston.com
Tue Mar 28 16:28:23 PST 2006

All of the above here in West Olympia also.
edswan at thurston.com
Olympia, WA

----- Original Message -----
From: Dennis Paulson
To: Tweeters
Sent: Tuesday, March 28, 2006 8:39 AM
Subject: [Tweeters] alert Varied Thrushes

Hello, tweeters.

When I'm working at the computer near a window, I've noticed something interesting when I stand up. The yard may be full of birds of a half-dozen species or more (chickadees, juncos, Song Sparrows, flickers, Steller's Jays, towhees, robins, House Finches), but when I appear at the window there seems to be only one species that reacts - the Varied Thrush. We have had continuous Varied Thrush presence in the yard this winter, as many as four birds at a time. I suspect this is because we didn't rake up the leaves in the wooded half of the back yard this year, and that's where they spend a lot of time. Because they are also addicted to millet and the suet that has fallen from the suet feeders during woodpecker operations, they are often on the lawn under the feeders. Anyway, when I appear at the window the other birds seem not to notice or not to care, but the thrushes immediately look up and usually fly into cover. They seem considerably more alert and spooky than the other species. Perhaps this is because they're feeding out in the open rather than in the woods where they prefer to be. Woodland birds have large eyes, and these birds obviously combine exceptional vision with a high state of alertness. They need it, as there seem always to be accipiters in the area, yet the other birds don't react in the same way to the movement at the window.

Dennis Paulson

1724 NE 98 St.

Seattle, WA 98115



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