Catharus guttatus

This Hermit Thrush was unusually confiding/unconcerned about my presence.
The bird rapidly shook its legs on the ground. Like an American Woodcock, but more spasmodically.
Calling forth the invertebrates…
Admittedly, at first I thought this was a nervous disorder! I’ve seen a lot of thrushes over the years, but this was surely the closest, and not in the deep shade of some bush. But I’d never seen “foot-trembling,” as the ornithologists call it, before. Yes, this trick is to stir up prey.

Leave the leaves be.

4 Responses to “Catharus guttatus”


  1. 1 Chuck McAlexander November 14, 2020 at 12:52 pm

    I have never seen a Hermit using foot trembling but have seen Wilson’s Storm Petrel do exactly what you describe for the same reason on water. Know of any other species which use this?

  2. 3 Doris Karnila November 14, 2020 at 2:06 pm

    Just wanted to say “Thank you” for all the wonderful photos I’ve enjoyed from you over the years. Not to mention the articles and comments to inspire. What an amazing little bird this is.


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