© 2024 South Carolina Public Radio
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Rose-breasted grosbeaks and gray-cheeked thrushes

A listener reports two casulties outside a window: a grey-cheeked thrush and a rose-breasted grossbeak.

The grey-cheeked thrush (Catharus minimus) is a medium-sized thrush. This species is 15–17 cm (5.9–6.7 in) in length, and has the white-dark-white underwing pattern characteristic of Catharus thrushes. The grey-cheeked thrush is a long-distance migrant species with a migration on average of 300 km. They are believed to spend their winter in the Amazon basin and will cross the Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico during their spring migration.

The rose-breasted grosbeak (Pheucticus ludovicianus), colloquially called "cut-throat" due to its coloration, is a large, seed-eating grosbeak in the cardinal family (Cardinalidae). It is primarily a foliage gleaner. Males have black heads, wings, backs, and tails, and a bright rose colored patch on their white breast. Males and females exhibit marked sexual dimorphism. Breeding habitat consists of cool-temperate open deciduous woods throughout much of eastern North America, with migration to tropical America in winter.

Stay Connected
Rudy Mancke served as naturalist and co-host of South Carolina ETV's <i>NatureScene</i>, which began its long run in 1978. His field trips, broadcast nationwide, earned him a legion of dedicated viewers. Rudy's knowledge of the complex inner-workings of different ecosystems and his great admiration for the natural world make him the perfect guide. In fact, the National Wildlife Federation and the Garden Club of America honored his commitment to resource conservation with special awards. After retiring from SCETV, Rudy went on to become naturalist-in-residence at the University of South Carolina, Columbia. He hosted SC Public Radio's <i>NatureNotes</i> from 1999 until his death in 2023 at age 78.