Brown Thrasher – Call | Habitat | Diet | Range | Size | Facts

Brown Thrasher

The brown thrasher, scientific name Toxostoma rufum is a bird within the family Mimidae, which additionally contains the New World catbirds and mockingbirds. The brown thrasher is ample all through the eastern and central United States and southern and central Canada, and it’s the sole thrasher to reside primarily east of the Rockies and central Texas. It is the state bird of Georgia. In this article, I am going to talk about Brown Thrasher call, vs wood thrush, habitat, diet, range, size, facts, etc.

Brown Thrasher profile

As a member of the genus Toxostoma, the bird is a large-sized thrasher. It has brown higher elements with a white beneath half with darkish streaks.

Because of this, it’s typically confused with the smaller wooden thrush (Hylocichla mustelina), amongst different species. The brown thrasher is famous for having over 1000 tune sorts, and the biggest tune repertoire of birds. However, every word is often repeated in two or three phrases.

The brown thrasher is an omnivore, with its eating regimen starting from bugs to fruits and nuts. The traditional nesting areas are shrubs, small bushes, or at instances on floor degree.

Brown thrashers are usually inconspicuous however territorial birds, particularly when defending their nests, and can assault species as massive as people.

Brown Thrasher Description

The brown thrasher is brilliant reddish-brown above with skinny, darkish streaks on its buffy underparts. It has a whitish-colored chest with distinguished teardrop-shaped markings on its chest.

Its long, rufous tail is rounded with paler corners, and its eyes are an excellent yellow. Its bill is brownish, long, and curves downward. Both men and women are comparable in look.

The juvenile look of the brown thrasher from the grownup will not be remarkably completely different, apart from plumage texture, indiscreet higher half markings, and the irises having an olive shade.

The brown thrasher is a pretty big passerine, though it’s usually reasonable in size for a thrasher, being distinctly bigger than the sage thrasher (Oreoscoptes montanus) however comparable or considerably smaller in size than the more brownish Toxostoma species discovered additional west. Adults measure around 23.5 to 30.5 cm (9.3 to 12.0 in) long with a wingspan of 29 to 33 cm (11 to 13 in), and weigh 61 to 89 g (2.2 to 3.1 oz), with a mean of 68 g (2.4 oz).

Among normal measurements, the wing chord is 9.5 to 11.5 cm (3.7 to 4.5 in), the tail is 10.9 to 14.1 cm (4.3 to 5.6 in), the culmen is 2.2 to 2.9 cm (0.87 to 1.14 in) and the tarsus is 3.2 to 3.6 cm (1.3 to 1.4 in).

There are two subspecies: the ‘brown thrasher’ (T. rufum rufum), which lies within the eastern half of Canada and the United States, and the ‘western brown thrasher’ (T. rufum longicauda (Baird, 1858)), which resides within the central United States east of the Rocky Mountains and south-central Canada. The western brown thrasher is distinguished by a more cinnamon higher half, whiter wing bars, and darker breast spots than T.rufum rufum.

The lifespan of the brown thrasher relies on a year-to-year foundation, as the speed of survival within the first year is 35%, 50% in between the second and third year, and 75% between the third and fourth year.

Disease and publicity to chilly climate are amongst contributing elements for the boundaries of the lifespan. However, the longest-lived thrasher within the wild is 12 years, and comparatively the identical for ones in captivity.

Brown Thrasher Distribution and habitat

The brown thrasher resides in varied habitats. It prefers to reside in woodland edges, thickets, and dense brush, typically looking for meals in dry leaves on the bottom.

It also can inhabit areas that are agricultural and close to suburban areas however is much less prone to reside close to housing than different bird species.

The brown thrasher typically vies for habitat and potential nesting grounds with different birds, which is often initiated by the males.

The brown thrasher is a robust, however partial migrant, because the bird is a year-round resident within the southern portion of its range.

The breeding range contains the United States and Canada east of the Rocky Mountains however has been sometimes noticed West of the Rockies.

The improve in bushes all through the Great Plains in the course of the previous century resulting from hearth suppression and tree planting facilitated a westward range growth of the brown thrasher in addition to range expansions of many different species of birds.

Studies point out that thrashers that reside within the New England area of the United States in the course of the breeding season fly towards the Carolinas and Georgia, birds positioned within the east of the Mississippi winter from Arkansas to Georgia, and birds positioned within the Dakotas and the central Canadian provinces head in the direction of eastern Texas and Louisiana.

When the species does migrate, it’s sometimes for brief distances and in the course of the night time. There are additionally information of the birds wintering in Mexico, in addition to a British document of a transatlantic vagrant.

Brown Thrasher Song

The brown thrasher has a lush resounding voice, and sings a seemingly infinite practice of melodies—it is personal and others’—from one finish of a spring day to the opposite, and it could keep hidden in a deep shrub all of the whereas.

The thrasher’s tune is sort of as wealthy and various as a mockingbird’s, and it is rather comparable in high quality, however the place the mocker often sings its phrases thrice every, the thrasher utters his solely twice.

The old farmer’s rendering of the thrasher’s tune is seen it, choose it up, dig it, plant it. The call is a metallic chaak! that appears like two big marbles cracking collectively.

Brown Thrasher Behavior

The brown thrasher has been noticed both solo or in pairs. The brown thrasher is often an elusive bird and maintains its evasiveness with low-level flying.

When it feels bothered, it often hides into thickets and provides cackling calls. Thrashers spend most of their time on floor level or close to it.

When seen, it’s generally the males which are singing from unadorned branches.

The brown thrasher has been famous for having aggressive conduct and is a staunch defender of its nest.

However, the name doesn’t come from attacking perceived threats however is believed to have come from the beating sound the bird makes when digging by means of floor particles.

It can also be thought that the name comes from the beating sound that’s made whereas it’s smashing massive bugs to kill and ultimately eat.

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Brown Thrasher Feeding

This bird is omnivorous, which has a diet that features bugs, berries, nuts, and seeds, in addition to earthworms, snails, and generally lizards and frogs.

Across seasons and its breeding range, it was discovered 63% of abdomen contents had been manufactured from animal matter, the remaining 37% being plant materials.

During the breeding season, the eating regimen consists primarily of beetles, grasshoppers, and different arthropods, and fruits, nuts, and seeds. More than 80% of the diet of brown thrasher from Illinois is manufactured from animal matter, about 50% being beetles. In Iowa, about 20% of the summer eating regimen was discovered to include grasshoppers.

By the late summer, it begins to shift in the direction of more of a herbivore eating regimen, specializing in fruits, nuts, seeds, and grains, 60% of the meals in Illinois being fruits and seeds.

By winter, the customary eating regimen of the brown thrasher is fruit and acorns.

Wintering birds in Texas had been discovered to eat 58% plant materials (primarily sugarberry and poison ivy) and 42% animal materials in October; by March, within the dry interval when meals provide is mostly decrease, 80% of the meals grew to become animal and solely 20% crops.

Vertebrates are solely eaten sometimes and are sometimes comprised of small reptiles and amphibians, similar to lizards, small or younger snakes, tree frogs, and salamanders.

Brown Thrasher Breeding

Brown thrashers are sometimes monogamous birds, however, mate-switching does happen, at instances throughout the identical season. Their breeding season varies by area.

In the southeastern United States, the breeding months start in February and March, whereas May and June see the graduation of breeding within the northern portion of their breeding range.

When males enter the breeding grounds, their territory can range from 2 to 10 acres (0.81 to 4.05 ha). Around this time of the year, the males are often at their most energetic, singing loudly to draw potential mates, and are discovered on top of perches.

The courting ritual entails the exchanging of possible nesting materials. Males will sing gentler as they sight a feminine, and this enacts the feminine to seize a twig or leaf and current it to the male, with flapping wings and chirping sounds.

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The males may also current a present in the response and method the feminine. Both sexes will participate in nest constructing as soon as mates discover one another, and can mate after the nest is accomplished.

The feminine lays Three to five eggs, that often seem with a blueish or greenish tint together with reddish-brown spots. There are uncommon occurrences of no spots on the eggs.

The nest is constructed twiggy, lined with grass, leaves, and different types of useless vegetation.

The nests are sometimes inbuilt a dense shrub or low in a tree, often as much as 2.1 m (6.9 ft) excessive, however have constructed nests as excessive as 6 m (20 ft).

They additionally every now and then build nests on the bottom. Between eleven days to 2 weeks, the eggs hatch. Both parents incubate and feed the younger, with the feminine doing many of the incubating.

9 to 13 days after hatching, the nestlings start to fledge. These birds elevate two, generally even three broods in a year.

The male sings a sequence of brief repeated melodious phrases from an open perch to declare his territory and can also be very aggressive in defending the nest, recognized to strike people and animals. Learn more about brandts cormorant.

One thought on “Brown Thrasher – Call | Habitat | Diet | Range | Size | Facts


  1. I have a pair of Brown Thrashers that nest in my Cacti every spring. They just finished repairing the nest and the female is in it now. They are not afraid of me. In another month I will also have Crooked Bills. Between the two of them I have lots of holes in my yard and few bugs. Last year I had a baby on my porch, I rescued him from the cats and put him back in the nest, the parents just watched me. Now I can put food out for them – thanks you.

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