Guard Duty

Northern Mockingbirds are like 2-year old children! They don’t like sharing what “belongs” to them. Fruiting shrubs and trees are full of ripe berries at this time of year and resident mockingbirds guard them diligently. In their mind, the fruit belongs to them and, if successfully guarded from other hungry birds, it will provide them with months of sustenance. Migrant thrushes, grosbeaks, warblers, tanagers and others want the fruit as well. An essential fuel for their long migrations south. Let the battles commence! I can guarantee if I go out to our front yard right now, our resident mockingbirds will be guarding the poke weed (pictured), beauty berry bushes and dogwood trees from northern migrants. When I hear one of our mockingbird’s alarm calling, it could be because a migrant is trying to “steal” their fruit. Good to know, as I can go take a quick peek to see what species of “thief” has dared to raid the mockingbird larder!


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