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The Way of the Robin

Life isn't easy for the most familiar bird on the continent.

By: Rick Burkman
Photography by Dave and Steve Maslowski

Everyone knows a bird when they see one. Most people are even familiar with groups of birds, such as ducks, geese, and pigeons. But even these well-known representatives of the avian world cannot claim to be North America’s best-known bird. Not even the bald eagle, found on coins, stamps, signs, packaging, and more throughout the United States, can claim that distinction. No, the most familiar North American bird is a songbird: the orange-bellied American robin (Turdus migratorius). Unlike its reclusive relative, the wood thrush, the American robin is neither secretive nor hard to find. These birds share our lawns and woodlots in both the city and country. Yet while they may be a familiar presence, the robin keeps a wary distance, never letting us get too close. So how much do we really know about the ways of the robin?

 
Read the rest of this article in Wildfowl Carving Magazine’s Spring 2014 issue!

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