Big Garden Birdwatch – Blackbird

The males live up to their name but, confusingly, females are brown often with spots and streaks on their breasts. The bright orange-yellow beak and eye-ring make adult male blackbirds one of the most striking garden birds. One of the most common UK birds, its mellow song is also a favourite.

Earthworms are a favourite food for blackbirds. They are able to hear movement just beneath the ground’s surface and hunt by cocking their head, listening carefully. They also eat other insects, caterpillars, fallen fruit and berries, foraging on the ground and in the undergrowth. You can often hear blackbirds in hedges and undergrowth flipping fallen leaves as they search for food beneath.

  • What do we mean when we say a song is mellow?
  • What do we mean by “cocking their head”?
  • Why do Blackbirds find it difficult to find earthworms at this time of year?

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