The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Hermit Thrush visitor

Hermit thrush

Scenes in The Hobbit aside, thrushes are usually shy, so I was surprised when this Hermit Thrush showed up in the yard Friday afternoon.  Actually, I had forgotten that we had a Hermit Thrush breastresident winter thrush, so I was a bit concerned that the bird might have missed the boat on fall migration.  I looked up possible thrush foods, discovering that insects are preferred but fruits are common in fall and winter, then scattered raisins around the yard in case the thrush was starving.

Our thrush didn't seem interested in my raisins, but it did spend half an hour hopping around and pecking at our damp earth, presumably finding worms and insects.  How magical is it to have a Hermit Thrush taking the place of a suburban Robin, wandering around the yard?

Our chicken waterer keeps our domesticated flock happy and healthy as they enjoy a similar life, remembering to leave us an egg now and then in thanks.

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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I feel overly compelled to not that maybe it's not a hermit thrush? Maybe it's a hybrid, newfangled, semi-hermit, just-a-little-shy thrush?


Comment by c. Sun Dec 16 10:50:53 2012
C, Hah! Yeah, it is pretty amusing that the one woodland thrush that shows up in our yard is the Hermit.
Comment by anna Sun Dec 16 11:34:51 2012

Thanks for your lovely photos! Any special song to listen for, that you can describe?

Have you been to see The Hobbit? I don't want to go, mainly because I don't want my own imagining of it to be confused!

Comment by adrianne Sun Dec 16 12:12:29 2012

Mom --- I keep wavering about seeing the movie, but I think I'm going to hold firm and keep the imaginings I have solid. Pretty funny that we're both staying away from the movie for the same reason. :-)

The robin The Secret Garden is a British robin, which is very different from the American Robin --- not a thrush at all. That's why I thought about The Hobbit --- that thrush is probably a Song Thrush, which is in the same family as our robin and as our woodland thrushes.

The wood thrush is the one I hear singing much more than the Hermit Thrush (who mostly leaves this area for the summer, staying only at very high elevations). All of our woodland thrushes, though, have similar songs, a bit like elf-flutes. :-) The Wood Thrush has my favorite song of all birds!

Comment by anna Sun Dec 16 12:52:52 2012

Birds of a feather flock together ;)

/ok really stopping now, promise, really :D

Comment by c. Sun Dec 16 13:46:20 2012

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