Black-throated Thrush

Black-throated Thrush
Black-throated Thrush Turdus atrogularis, male, Xiaodong Gulch (47.979670, 88.217800), Xinjiang, elev. 1420 m (4,660 ft.), May. (Craig Brelsford)

Black-throated Thrush Turdus atrogularis breeds northern and western Xinjiang from Altai south to Kunlun. Breeders in Russian Far East also traverse west, central, and northeast China to wintering grounds in southeast Tibet and western Yunnan. HABITAT Evergreen forest, to 3000 m (9,840 ft.). In winter in more open areas, such as scrubby hillsides and gardens. ID & COMPARISON Formerly considered conspecific with Red-throated Thrush T. ruficollis. Male grey, black, and white, the colors contrasting neatly. Face black, greyer in winter; upper breast black; lower breast and belly white, with shadow of grey spotting. Faint supercilium. Ashy-grey from forehead to rump; wings and tail darker. Female lightly streaked on flanks, spotted on breast; chin largely white. Red underwing. First-winter female similar to Red-throated Thrush but lacks red in tail and warm tones on breast. BARE PARTS Bill yellow, tipped black; feet brownish. VOICE Song slow, fluty; alarm call throaty, harsh. — Craig Brelsford

THE TRUE THRUSHES OF CHINA has research on all 24 species in the genus Turdus in China. Click any link:

Grey-backed Thrush Turdus hortulorum
Tickell’s Thrush T. unicolor
Black-breasted Thrush T. dissimilis
Japanese Thrush T. cardis
White-collared Blackbird T. albocinctus
Grey-winged Blackbird T. boulboul
Common Blackbird T. merula
Chinese Blackbird T. mandarinus
Tibetan Blackbird T. maximus
Chestnut Thrush T. rubrocanus
White-backed Thrush T. kessleri
Grey-sided Thrush T. feae
Eyebrowed Thrush T. obscurus
Pale Thrush T. pallidus
Brown-headed Thrush T. chrysolaus
Black-throated Thrush T. atrogularis
Red-throated Thrush T. ruficollis
Naumann’s Thrush T. naumanni
Dusky Thrush T. eunomus
Fieldfare T. pilaris
Redwing T. iliacus
Song Thrush T. philomelos
Chinese Thrush T. mupinensis
Mistle Thrush T. viscivorus

See also:

Taiwan Thrush Turdus niveiceps


Daniel Bengtsson served as chief ornithological consultant for Craig Brelsford’s Photographic Field Guide to the Birds of China, from which this species description is drawn.

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