La. passer sparrow, small bird
La. forma form, kind, species
La. mimus mimic, actor
La. dumetum a thicket
La. carolinensis of Carolina
|About nine inches long. Dark slate gray
upper parts. Dull black crown and tail. Underside slate gray. Long erect tail, chestnut
Abundant in the eastern and northwestern U.S. and in Canada, north
to British Columbia, Hudson Bay and Nova Scotia. Winters in the southern U.S., Central
America and the Caribbean. Likes brushy woods, swampy thickets, and frequents farms, towns
Builds loosely woven nests of twigs,
grass, leaves, bark and roots lined with fine grass in bushes, vines and low trees usually
less than ten feet high.
Lays three to six deep bluish green eggs. Frequently raise two broods.
Runs along the ground. Hunts ants, crickets, grasshoppers, beetles,
spiders and caterpillars.
Catches moths, flies and other flying insects on the wing. Also
likes many fruits, which make up a significant part of its diet.
Intelligent bird, friendly to humans. Likes baths and
loves to preen its feathers. A mocking bird, its varying melodies follow no discipline and
it will imitate birds, frogs, cats, chickens, cartwheels and humans calling to it and it
has a harsh cry like the mewing of a cat.
Neighboring catbirds gather to drive away intruders with loud,
obnoxious cries and if a brood is orphaned will feed and raise them.
A USGS research center web
site and an older version of an Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation
brochure included Catbirds and Thrashers as users of platforms.
The original brochure
said: "These birds will use the nesting platform when natural nesting sites are
unavailable. The platforms should be placed in partial shade along main branches of trees
or under the eaves of a shed or porch roof."
In 1993, Catbirds and Thrashers were deleted from the brochure because of a lack of
However, Gilbert H. Trafton, the author
of "Bird Friends", 1916, recommended
platforms open on all four sides for Thrashers, Catbirds and Song
You may be more likely to attract a Robin, Dove or Phoebe, but if anyone has witnessed
Catbirds or Thrashers in a platform structure, I would like to know.