[CT Birds] Chester, 10/3 - death of a wood thrush

Tammy Eustis teustis at killingworthlibrary.org
Sun Oct 3 08:15:37 EDT 2010

Chester, 10/3 - I did something today I've never done before in my life: ran over a bird with my car! It was a wood thrush.
I saw the thrush on two occasions yesterday. It was poking around in the woods on the side of a dirt driveway (where I'm staying in Chester). The first time, I was walking by with a dog, and the thrush wasn't very concerned that we were within 5 feet of its browsing. It seemed a little low-energy at that point - not injured, because it could fly into low bushes just fine - but not doing the enthusiastic scratching and flipping of leaves that I've seen thrushes do. A couple of hours later, I was leaving in my car and saw the thrush in the same area, this time just sitting in the driveway with its back to my car. I actually had to get out and shoo it off into the woods; again, it seemed very tired.
I was still thinking about the thrush this morning, wondering if it had eaten fermented berries, or if it wasn't having much luck finding food. I drove off to get breakfast, and when I came back, I saw the thrush's white belly in the tire-rut of the driveway. It was freshly dead, and the injuries indicated that I had driven over it.
I feel terrible! Although I have to wonder just how bad-off the poor bird was, that it stayed in that one area for almost 24 hours and was acting listless.
So for those of you who have dirt drives or roads: proceed with caution. There are some tired birds out there these days!
- Tammy Eustis, Chester

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