American Robin 
(Turdis migratorius)  

Quick Facts

America Robins belong to the thrush family

Robins are found throughout North America

Robins are the largest North American thrush.

Robins are dark gray, black and rufous, with some white.

Robins are ground- feeding insectivores. They eat worms and insects.

Robins like fruit and berries.

Robins form pairs and nest and raise young together.

Robins usually lay four blue eggs.

Baby robins have speckled breasts.

Robins nest two or three times a season.

Robins migrate to warmer climates for winter.

The American Robin is a member of the thrush family.  "Thrush" means wanderer.  Robins are the largest thrushes.  The male is dark grey above, but the head, wings and tail are almost black.  The outer tail feathers, eye circle, throat and rump are white.  The breast is a brick-red colour.   Females and young are duller in colour. Young robins have speckles on their breasts. 

Robins summer over most of North America.  Robins can be found along forest borders, in orchards, gardens, parks and yards. 

Robins eat a lot of insects.  They run over the ground searching for earthworms and also eat beetles, weevils, grasshoppers, ants, termites, cutworms, caterpillars, butterflies and moths.  They enjoy fruits such as bayberries, grapes, mistletoe berries, and chokecherries. 

Robins migrate to their summer homes in late winter.  They begin to sing in April, when the adults begin to pair. When the male and female have paired, they build a cup-shaped nest of mud and grasses.  The female lays as many as four blue eggs, which hatch at between 12 and 14 days.  The young are altricial.  They are born without feathers and with their eyes closed.  Their parents feed them in the nest until they are ready to leave it at 14 to 16 days of age.  Baby robins cannot fly for the first few days after they jump from the nest.  Their parents lead them to low shrubs and trees and they gradually learn to climb and jump.  Within a day or two their wings grow stronger and they begin to take short flights.  Their parents feed them until they have learned to feed themselves.  When the young are independent, the parents will usually nest again. 

In autumn, robins gather in flocks and prepare to migrate. They can winter anywhere from Southern Canada to Guatemala and points in between.


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Prepared for IWRC by:

Astrid MacLeod, Manitoba, Canada

Photos by:

Marge Gibson, Wisconsin, USA
Joe MacLeod, Manitoba, Canada
Corel Photo CD