Grey-cheeked thrush

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Grey-cheeked thrush
Graycheekedthrush36.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Passeriformes
Family: Turdidae
Genus: Catharus
Species: C. minimus
Binomial name
Catharus minimus
(Lafresnaye, 1848)
Synonyms

Hylocichla aliciae

The Grey-cheeked thrush (Catharus minimus) is a medium-sized thrush. This species is 15–17 cm in length, and has the white-dark-white underwing pattern characteristic of Catharus thrushes. It is a member of a close-knit group of migrant species together with the veery and Bicknell's thrush;[2] it forms a cryptic species pair with the latter. The grey-cheeked thrush is all but indistinguishable from Bicknell's thrush except by its slightly larger size and different song. The two were formerly considered conspecific.[3] Of all the American spotted thrushes, the Gray-cheeked has the most northern breeding range.[4]

Name[edit]

The specific name minimus is Latin for "smallest".[5]

Description[edit]

Adults are olive-brown on the upperparts. The underparts are white with gray on the flanks; the breast is greyish brown with darker spots. They have pink legs and a faint grey eye ring. They have gray cheeks.

They forage on the forest floor, mainly eating insects and berries.

This bird's song is a distant-sounding series of flute-like tones rising then falling in pitch. Like Bicknell's thrush, they are very secretive during the nesting season.

Range[edit]

Their breeding habitat is the boreal forests of spruce and tundra scrub of willow and alder[6] across northern Canada and Alaska and into Siberia.[7] They make a cup nest in a low location on a conifer or on the ground at the base of a shrub.

They migrate to northern South America, and are rarely seen as a vagrant in Europe. Its northerly breeding range and long-distance migration make it one of the more regular North American passerine migrants to cross the Atlantic.

References[edit]

  1. ^ BirdLife International (2012). "Catharus minimus". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 26 November 2013. 
  2. ^ Winker, Kevin; Pruett, Christin L. (2006). "Seasonal Migration, Speciation, and Morphological Convergence in the Genus Catharus (Turdidae)" (PDF). The Auk. 123 (4): 1052. doi:10.1642/0004-8038(2006)123[1052:SMSAMC]2.0.CO;2. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2007-10-25. 
  3. ^ Ouellet, H (1993). "Bicknell's Thrush: Taxonomic Status and Distribution" (PDF). The Wilson Bulletin. 105 (4): 545–572. 
  4. ^ "Gray-cheeked Thrush". www.allaboutbirds.org. Retrieved 2017-06-04. 
  5. ^ Jobling, James A (2010). The Helm Dictionary of Scientific Bird Names. London: Christopher Helm. p. 256. ISBN 978-1-4081-2501-4. 
  6. ^ Kenn Kaufman. "Gray-cheeked Thrush". Guide to North American Birds. Audubon Society. Retrieved 10 August 2016. 
  7. ^ Brazil, Mark (2009) Birds of East Asia, A&C Black, ISBN 978-0-7136-7040-0, p. 400

External links[edit]