The Catharus thrushes are celebrated songsters. We've already had two of them. The
is the common thrush in western Oregon, but the Hermit does occur there at
higher elevation. It also winters there, but those are probably different birds, the local
breeders having moved a few hundred miles south for the winter. They still have it easier than
the Swainson's Thrushes, who go to Central America.
The Hermit Thrush's song is easy to tell from the similar-sounding songs of its
congeners. Every song begins with a pure whistle, and succeeding songs are usually at noticeably different
pitch-levels. All spotted thrushes typically sing from inside a bush (but see the Veery on
June 10), as this one did. He continued to sing as I inched up to a break in the foliage. We made eye contact.
He hesitated, and then continued singing. It was quite late in the day. The result is a dim picture but a very clean recording
that displays the intricacies of each song in detail. The details are exquisite, especially to listen to.