- ORDER: Passeriformes
- FAMILY: Mimidae
A lanky, gray-brown bird of desert washes, the Crissal Thrasher generally stays hidden and close to the ground as it probes for insects and seeds with its long, curved bill. It is easily mistaken for a Curve-billed Thrasher with its long tail and light orange eyes, except for a subtle black-and-white mustache, rich cinnamon patch under the tail, and pale, unspotted belly. Its mellow, musical song makes it one of the finest desert songsters.More ID Info
Find This Bird
Crissal Thrashers are furtive by nature and forage within thorny desert vegetation, usually on the ground, where they are hard to see. The best way to find them is to listen for males singing in late winter and spring (they also sometimes sing in autumn). At other times, look for them foraging at the base of a bush or running across an opening in the vegetation.
- Cuitlacoche Culirrojo (Spanish)
- Moqueur cul-roux (French)
- Cool Facts
- Crissal Thrashers are sedentary creatures. Banding records indicate that they almost never venture more than a mile or so of their original point of capture—although some birds may move downslope from higher-elevation territories in winter, in a pattern known as altitudinal migration.
- The nest of the Crissal Thrasher is usually built just underneath a large branch, making access difficult. This provides concealment from aerial predators and shades the nest from the desert sun.
- The Crissal Thrasher walks and runs around its territory more than it flies. Even when disturbed by a person or a predator the thrasher is most likely to run away to cover.
- The oldest recorded Crissal Thrasher was at least 4 years, 5 months old when it was recaptured and re-released during banding operations in Arizona in 1944. It had been banded in 1941.