Brown Thrasher

Brown Thrasher by Bill Bergen
© Bill Bergen
Toxostoma rufum
No sound in the forest or in the dense shrubbery around our homes is more indicative of fall than the wheeu note that the Brown Thrasher begins to make again after its comparative silence in late summer. Although commonly but erroneously called the "brown thrush," this species is actually a "first cousin" of the mockingbirds, which it closely resembles except in color. The songs of the two seem almost identical except to those who know that the thrasher sings in spurts of two or three notes disrupted by slight pauses, whereas the mocker's song is delivered without pause. Neither does the thrasher imitate other birds to any noticeable extent. The color of the upperparts of the Brown Thrasher is a rich brown, that of the underparts buffy, heavily streaked with dusky not spotted as in the case of our true thrushes.
Brown Thrashers are abundant permanent residents throughout the state, and in winter Louisiana is the home for many northern members of the species that come south to escape the cold weather and to find adequate food. The rather bulky nest of the thrasher is made of sticks and rootlets, lined with finer materials. The three to six eggs are bluish or grayish white, sprinkled with brown or rufous. --George H. Lowery, Jr., 1974, Louisiana Birds

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