The Garden Community for Garden Lovers

Mistle Thrushes


By dorjac


Since the start of the cold weather about two months ago. Two of these birds have been in charge of the garden. Never had them here before in 24 years, apart from a short visit from a pair one Spring. The poor old blackbird is seen off if spotted anywhere near ‘their food’. He gets shoulder charged out of the way and even chased. They are nearly as big as the Collared Doves and very bossy with wood pigeons. The visiting cats are fascinated by them, as they don’t disapear just because a cat is around. So far they have munched a whole dinner tray of left over black grapes. They guard the Rowan Tree. Now there are only berries left on the tips of branches and they do acrobatics to eat them. Whether this is the end of hard times for the birds is anyone’s guess………Some time has gone by since I wrote this blog. Mr and Mrs Mistle are still presiding over their ancient grapes and squishy blueberries. I can see another trip to Sainsbury for more supplies of clapped out grapes , if any. LoL….must be mad!!!!!

Here is one of the pair. One is a bit bigger than the other. They watch out for each other. That is when you see both of them. Not for long, so no photo, so far, of them as a pair

Since this colder weather there have been more of these beautiful big birds in the garden

Sometimes they feed peacefully. When the weather was very severe. The food was on top of the snow they quarrelled a lot. A really bossy one kept chasing the others off the food

These thrushes really do guard their food sources very keenly. They cooperate as a pair and are together but apart! They are so different to song thrushes in their behaviour.

Stripey Cat is on duty on the top of the garden shed near to the haunt of the Mistle Thrushes

Mr Blobby is, as usual, trying to eat something that is a bit difficult to chew. The remains of a leg of lamb, picked clean by the Starlings. Normally he would be on Thrush minding duty too.

This is their feeding place now that the tray of grapes is finished by these grape/berry gannets. The robin is allowed on there for his dried wormy things but nothing bigger then robin size.

These pigeons were squabbling when the ground was very frosted and hard. They couldn’t feed then, without constant standoffs. I mainly put out wholemeal bread, suet granules and birdseed for them and the Starlings. sometimes the moggies are lurking and no bird lands to feed.

Here are Blackbird and Mistle thrush eyeing one another up. Mr Mistle is in full charge of the Rowan tree!

More blog posts by dorjac

Previous post: Wanderers return

Next post: Winter Break



A fascinating blog... thanks for the interesting descriptions and photos... the blackbirds must be surprised to be chased away by thrushes... so often the blackbirds are the bossy birds of the garden !

8 Jan, 2011


Great blog Dorjac. Quite a drama.

8 Jan, 2011


Lovely blog, Dorjac. I suppose that's what's meant by a pecking order! Love your last photo of the stand-off between blackbird and thrush, very High Noon :)

8 Jan, 2011


Aren't Mistle Thrushes just the loveliest birds? We have one coming in occasionally, first time in years to this garden. I love Mr. Blobby cat, he knows where to come for some food!

8 Jan, 2011


love mistle thrushs,i heard they are a delicasy in france and thats why we dont see a lot of them,they are larger than the thrushs ive noticed and they are great to watch

8 Jan, 2011


Thoroughly enjoyed this little drama, could almost feel the tension, well done.

8 Jan, 2011


Mr and Mrs Mistle have been back again on the bird table this morning. In response to fresh cut up black grapes. A Magpie landed about 4 foot away from them but they stayed put. A key rattle in the back door saw him off. Miserable Marmalade Moggy is waiting for a handout too. He is hoping Miss Spooky does not come by. She has had two punchups with him and then walked off and left the food under the bench. I think his owners have gone away and left him to fend for himself.

10 Jan, 2011


Oh no, don't say that, I hate it when people abandon poor little creatures.:0((

10 Jan, 2011


nice blog..lovely birds Mistle Thrush's have a couple here on occasions and I know there is some mistletoe by the canal near me, i just wish they'd do there stuff with pollinating that on a couple of apple trees or something in the garden..

did you know that the birds you see in the summer arent the ones you see in the winter..the mistle thrush seen in your garden in summer would have flown south, even if just to france by october and those living north of uk in northen europe would have arrived in your garden in october/november..

9 Feb, 2011

Add a comment

Recent posts by dorjac

Members who like this blog

  • Gardening with friends since
    14 Aug, 2008

  • Gardening with friends since
    16 Feb, 2008

  • Gardening with friends since
    18 Sep, 2008

  • Gardening with friends since
    27 Oct, 2009

  • Gardening with friends since
    10 Mar, 2010

  • Gardening with friends since
    7 Jul, 2009

  • Gardening with friends since
    1 Apr, 2009