Winter Robins Arrive In The Twin Cities

We're down to the bitter end in migration.  The fall robins are all over the place in Minnesota.  On the bike trails around town, the robins are so numerous, I can hear them over the sound of my headphones as I bike past.  These tend to be more aggressive birds and I'll admit that it's fun to see someone who can bully starlings.

I was a little surprised to see a Swainson's thrush mixed in with the robins.  We usually see other thrushes mixed in with flocks of robins, but this late it tends to be hermit thrushes.  The bird was not a welcome part of the flock.  The blurry robin in the above photo was on its way to making a sneak attach and chased the thrush off before I could get a better photo.

Robins totally dig all the fruit trees people plant in their yards, although many of the robins I find are raiding the buckthorn branches.  I'm torn, I'm happy to see robins adapting to a source of food, but I also realize that they are laying the groundwork to plant more buckthorn that has been removed.