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Facts About Mockingbirds For kids

Mockingbirds can be found throughout North America, Central America, and northern South America. Its natural habitats are subtropical or tropical moist lowland forests, subtropical or tropical mangrove forests, pastureland, plantations, open woodland, and marshes generally not further than 5 miles from water. Mockingbirds migrate to the southern part of the U.S. during winter months and retreat to northern regions during summer months to avoid extreme temperatures in both seasons.

  • When mockingbirds build their nests, they place the woody stems of shrubs, vines, or small trees in one or more cavities at the top of a tree.
  • Mockingbirds will also use natural materials like leaves, twigs, and bark to augment these cavities.
  • Once the birds have chosen their nest site, they gather moss to line their mossy cup-shaped nest with it. When finished, another bird will finish off the rim of the nest by using mud and saliva to mix an earthy material called mortar that hardens to form a neat layer around its edge.
  • Two white eggs are then laid, and both parents will share the duties of incubation. They will take turns sitting on the eggs for about 25–28 days until hatching. Both parents will also defend the nest from predators.
  • Mockingbirds are omnivorous birds that feed on meat, insects, seeds, berries, and other plant matter. They eat a wide range of foods, including insects, spiders, flowers, fruit, and berries.
  • Mockingbirds have a sweet song that they sing to attract mates. They often use one mating call to advertise their availability to potential mates. The female bird sings the first song during the mating season, which lasts from late winter through spring. A male will build a nest of twigs on the side of a tree to attract female birds for copulation. A calling song will follow shortly after. The female bird then chooses the mate that she wants for the breeding season. This will be an experienced male that has already built a nest of twigs in which he will deposit around three white eggs to incubate while he is away at work for 20–26 days.
  • The male bird defends his territory while he is away at work, and upon his return, the female bird will lay her eggs in the nest of sticks and moss to hatch out later. The male will also care for any young birds that are present in his territory.
  • Mockingbirds are not picky when choosing their mates but prefer to be with other mockingbirds just like them. A group of mockingbirds will often select one another to be their mates. They share many characteristics, including the same song and harmonious call that they use in the wild to attract mates.
  • Mockingbirds are not migratory birds but will migrate seasonally to escape extreme weather conditions. When the temperature drops, mockingbirds head south towards warmer temperatures in North America and Mexico; when summer arrives, they return north to take advantage of abundant natural food sources in this region of the country during their breeding season.
  • Mockingbirds are known for mimicking sounds in their natural habitats.