* Bird gray and slim, with large white patches on the wings and tail.
* Tail long, up to 6".
* Head and body length: 9-11".
* Habitat: Roadsides, thickets, towns, and farmlands. Nests made of twigs,
moss, and grass, and lined with wool or feathers, built in trees, shrubs,
or vines, 1-3 meters above the ground.
* Range: Throughout most of North America.
* Voice: Varied and much repeated, often heard at night. Mockingbirds
mimic other species and also produce a tchack or chair sound.
They pick up new songs as well as urban sounds very quickly.
* Behavior: Mockingbirds eat insects,and fruits including sumac, mountain
ash, barberry, honeysuckle, bittersweet,
and Virginia creeper. Their eggs
are greenish, with red or brown spots.
* The mockingbird is the state bird of Tennessee, Arkansas, Florida,
Mississippi, and Texas. When brought back to Europe by early explorers,
it amazed royalty and heads of state as it effortlessly and flawlessly
imitated the nightingale.
* "Out of the cradle endlessly rocking,
Out of the mocking-bird's throat, the musical shuttle...
A reminiscence sing."
-Walt Whitman, 1819-1892, from Out of the Cradle Endlessly
Approved by NR