Turdus pilaris, Linn. i. p. 291 (1766) ; Naumann, ii. p. 296. Taf. 67 ; Hewitson, i. p. 84, pl. 23, fig. 3 (egg) ; Newton, i. p. 272 ; Dresser, ii. p. 41, pls. 4, 5 ; Tacz. F. O. Sib. O. p. 287 ; Seebohm, Cat. B. Br. Mus. v. p. 205 ; Oates, F. Brit. Ind. Birds, ii. p. 150 ; Saunders, p. 7 ; Lilford, iii. p. 86, pl. 43.
Grive litorne, French ; Tordo zonal, Portug. ; Tordelagazzina, Ital. ; Wachholder-Drossel, German ; Kramsvogel Dutch ; Krams-juggel, Dan. ; Graa-trost, Norweg. ; Bjorktrast, Snoskata, Swed. ; Rakattirastas, Finn. ; Rastis, Lapp ; Drozd-riabinnik, Russ.
Ad. (Finland). Head, hind neck, and rump bluish grey ; the crown spotted with black ; superciliary and malar stripes buffy white ; centre of back, scapulars, and wing-coverts dark chestnut ; quills and tail blackish brown ; under parts white, throat and breast ochreous, the latter and flanks broadly marked with black ; under wing-coverts and axillaries white ; bill yellow, tipped with horn-brown ; legs reddish-black ; iris brown. Culmen 0.35, wing 5.8, tail 4.5, tarsus 1.3 inch. In winter the plumage is duller ; the head shaded with brown, the feathers on the breast and flanks margined with fulvous white ; beak horn-brown, yellowish at the base. The young bird has the upper parts much duller and striped with ochreous ; the ramp tinged with ochreous ; under parts ochreous, becoming white on the lower breast and abdomen ; the breast closely spotted with blackish.
Hab. Northern Europe and Asia as far east as the Yenesei valley occurring, though rarely, further east to Dauria, breeding in Scandinavia and North Russia and occasionally in North Germany and Central Russia ; in winter passing south to N. Africa, Turkestan, Kashmir, and N.W. India. A winter visitant only to Great Britain.
It frequents wooded and cultivated localities preferring woods of birch and pine. Its usual call-note is a loud harsh cackle but it utters also a softer one resembling the syllables qui-qui. Its song which is usually uttered when the bird is on the wing is poor. It breeds in scattered colonies, the nest being placed on a tree or bush, or occasionally on a stump, and constructed of grass-bents, pine-twigs, and moss, the foundation plastered with clay, and the lining is usually of tine grass. The eggs from 4 to 6 in number are greenish-blue, marked with reddish brown, richer coloured ami more sparingly marked than those of T. merula, and larger than those of T. iliacus, averaging about 1.5 by 0.85. They are subject to considerable variation in tone of ground-colour and markings.
9. Turdus pilaris