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Resident to the UK, the mistle thrush is the largest of all thrushes and is a common visitor to our gardens during autumn and winter.
Identifiable by grey-brown plumage, bold spots on the breast, long wings and white-edged tails. Juveniles are paler in colour, and have more heavily spotted underparts.
Mainly feeding on insects during spring and summer, they turn their attention towards fruits and berries during the winter months and will visit garden bird tables and feeders if provided with their favourite foods.
Female mistle thrushes construct their nests in trees, shrubs and walls. Built from grass, moss, leaves and earth, 3-6 pale blue eggs are incubated for 12-15 days until they hatch. Both parents take turns in feeding their young, before they fledge at around 20 days old.
The Latin name for a mistle thrush is 'turdus viscivorus', which translates as 'devourer of mistletoe'. However, they actually prefer holly and hawthorn berries.
Mistle thrushes are easy to mistake with the song thrush, however the song thrush is smaller in size and is more olive in colour.
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