Wood thrushes spend spring and summer hunting insects. In late summer and autumn, dogwood berries, elderberries, cherries, grapes and mulberries dominate the menu.
Listen for a lilting hee-o-lay hee-o-lay coming from thickets in spring and early summer.
Look for a handsome bird, a little smaller than a robin and more slender. Wood thrushes are rich brown above, with a rust-colored head, and the breast is creamy white with brown-black spots.
Watch wood thrushes hunting on the forest floor. They move in short bursts—much like robins (to which they are closely related).
Leave a thicket standing as habitat for wood thrushes and other cover-loving songbirds. Plant fruit-bearing shrubs and vines.
Did you know that many people confuse wood thrushes with brown thrashers? A wood thrush is smaller, with an all-black eye (the thrasher’s is ringed in yellow) and spotted breast (not streaked). The thrasher has a longer beak and tail.