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Fieldfare  (Turdus pilaris) | by Brian Carruthers-Dublin-Eire
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Fieldfare (Turdus pilaris)

Turdus pilaris

Turdus pilaris




Status: Common and widespread winter visitor from October to March throughout Ireland.


Conservation Concern: Green-listed in Ireland. The European population has been assessed as Secure.


Identification: About the same size as a Blackbird. Sexes and ages virtually identical. A very striking bird when seen well. Has a grey head and nape with indistinct white supercilium. The throat and breast are buffy-brown with extensive black streaks. The flanks have black arrow-markings (not spotted!), while the belly and vent are white. The back is brown, while the extensive rump is a pale grey. The tail and legs are black.


Similar Species: Blackbird, Mistle Thrush.


Call: A harsh "chack-chack", as well as high-pitched squeak. The song consists of a slow squeaky warble.


Diet: Insects, especially earthworms. Also berries and other fruit including apples.


Breeding: Does not breed in Ireland. There is a small population in Scotland (<10 pairs), but the majority breed in parks and gardens from Scandinavia and eastern France to Siberia. Frequently nests in colonies.


Wintering: Winters in open fields in lowland areas, generally avoiding suburban and urban areas. May visit gardens during very poor weather conditions.


Where to See: Common and widespread in Ireland in winter.


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Taken on March 3, 2012