Wildlife of the Week: American robin

Bird species can be heard on campus at night



An American robin grabs a worm at the Koppel Gardens in Pullman, Mar. 5, 2020


The American robin is a recognizable and widespread species of thrush found throughout the U.S.

With its famous red breast, this bird is often regarded as a herald of the spring season. Many say seeing one means spring has begun. However, the species is actually commonly seen year-round, according to Birds of the World.

In Pullman, flocks of robins can be seen on even the snowiest days of winter, picking off the remaining berries from the junipers around campus.

Perhaps one of the most famous behaviors associated with these birds is foraging for worms. This popular association is well-observed, as worms are a key food source for robins.

The spread of worms across the U.S. by humans has assisted the robins in their own range expansions.

Another lesser-known behavior of American robins is their night-singing; they often sing in the dead of night. During breeding time in late spring, they can be heard throughout campus as late (or early!) as 3 a.m.