Good to have you along 🙂
Anyhoo… I think most will have seen this wee bird going about.
Today’s bird is the robin.
When you listen to the robin in this video, there are so many other birds singing it might be hard to hear which one is the robin. Here’s a recording of one:
How would you describe their song? I think it sounds silvery.
Vicious fighters – robins are one of our most territorial birds. I have seen two robins sparring to the death, while singing their beautiful song!
Challenge – can you try and whistle the robin’s song?
Here’s a wee robin song for you to sing:
Heralds of autumn – in the summer birds are busy with their young and don’t sing much. But in August robins begin singing again, and for me, their song is the first sign of autumn.
Here’s more info on robins: https://www.discoverwildlife.com/animal-facts/birds/facts-about-robins/
Challenge – see if you can recognise a robin singing outside!
Robins have a very bright orangey-red breast, but this is only a small part of the bird. How many other feather colours can you see? I only noticed when I tried to felt one!
Compared to other small birds, robins have quite long legs. In this picture they’re hard to see because they’re hidden by the leg tufts.
Challenge – can you draw the robin?
Time for a tale
Listen to Jack’s tale o woe…
Challenge – can you make up a wee tale about a robin? I’d love to hear it 🙂
1 Bird clothes
In Chirpy Challenge 1 & 2 we spoke about how some Mr (Male) and Mrs (Female) birds are similar colours, and robins are the same.
All birds have several types of feathers for different purposes.
Flight feathers – have a hollow shaft surrounded by the vane, which is made of many hair-like filaments all zipped together.
Bristle feathers – help protect the eyes, beak and nostrils and act a bit like cat’s whiskers
Downy feathers – help insulate the bird and keep it warm. The robin below has puffed out all its down to try and trap air like an insulating blanket against the cold
Find out more: http://www.garden-birds.co.uk/information/feathers.html
We all know the adult robin, but would you know this one? This is a baby robin 🙂
And it will have a spotty tummy for the whole summer. This protects the young from being attacked by the adult birds, who would not tolerate any other red tummies in their territory!
In the autumn time those feathers will moult – that means they will be pushed out and replaced by the new red feathers.
Many young birds, like this baby robin, look quite different from the parent bird until they moult. This can make identifying birds in the autumn time quite tricky.
All birds moult, even the adults. For small birds this can take 6 weeks, but for other big birds a full moult can take years – otherwise there would be an awful lot of baldy birds that could not fly 🙂
Moulting takes lots of energy and usually happens while food is still plentiful and before the cold weather sets in.
Interestingly, the insect eating birds moult more efficiently than seed eaters as they absorb the keratin from the insects which is what feathers are made from.
Be great to hear your comments, see your drawings and hear your tales, you can add them to the Woodside or the Silverhaar facebook page 🙂
See you tomorrow