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Common Blackbird PNG Transparent Images

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Submitted by on Jul 14, 2021

Turdus merula (common blackbird) is a genuine thrush species. It’s also known as the Eurasian blackbird (particularly in North America, to distinguish it from the unrelated New World blackbirds), or simply the blackbird when there isn’t a similar-looking local species. It is found in Europe, Asiatic Russia, and North Africa, as well as Australia and New Zealand, where it has been imported.

Across its vast range, it has a multitude of subspecies; a few Asian subspecies are sometimes regarded as complete species. The common blackbird can be resident, somewhat migratory, or totally migratory, depending on latitude.

The adult male of the common blackbird (Turdus merula merula, the nominate subspecies), which may be found over much of Europe, is completely black except for a yellow eye-ring and beak and sings a rich, melodic song; the adult female and young are mostly dark brown. This species breeds in woodlands and gardens, where it constructs a tidy, cup-shaped nest with mud bindings. It eats a wide variety of insects, earthworms, berries, and fruits and is omnivorous.

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On the breeding grounds, both sexes are territorial, with different threat displays, but during migration and in wintering locations, they are more sociable. Where the temperature is suitably moderate, pairs stay in their area all year. This ubiquitous and visible species has spawned a slew of literary and cultural allusions, many of which are linked to its song.

Turdus merula was the name given to the common blackbird by Carl Linnaeus in his landmark 1758 10th edition of Systema Naturae (characterised as T. ater, rostro palpebrisque fulvis). The binomial name is derived from two Latin words: turdus, which means “thrush,” and merula, meaning “blackbird,” the latter of which gives birth to the French name merle and the Scots name merl.

Turdus is a genus of around 65 species of medium to large thrushes with rounded heads, longish, pointed wings, and typically beautiful songs. The song thrush and the mistle thrush are early offshoots of the Eurasian lineage of Turdus thrushes after they moved north from Africa, whereas the blackbird is descended from ancestors who colonized the Canary Islands from Africa and then traveled north to Europe. In terms of evolution, it is closely related to the island thrush (T. poliocephalus) of Southeast Asia and the southwest Pacific islands, which split from T. merula stock just recently.

It’s not immediately obvious why this species was given the name “blackbird” in 1486, rather than one of the many other familiar black English birds like the carrion crowraven, rook, or jackdaw. However, “bird” was primarily used for smaller or immature birds in Old English and contemporary English until around the 18th century, while bigger birds such as crows were referred to as “fowl.”

As a result, the blackbird was the only widespread and visible “blackbird” in the British Isles at the time. Until the 17th century, the species was known as ouzel, ousel, or wosel (from Old English osle, cf. German Amsel). Bottom alludes to “The Woosell cocke, so blacke of hew, With Orenge-tawny bill” in Act 3 of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. The ouzel term persisted in poetry and is now used to refer to the closely related ring ouzel (Turdus torquatus) and the unrelated but apparently similar white-throated dipper (Turdus torquatus) (Cinclus cinclus).

The white-collared blackbird (T. albocinctus) and the grey-winged blackbird (T. boulboul), both related Asian Turdus thrushes, are also known as blackbirds, while the Somali thrush (T. (olivaceus) ludoviciae) is also known as the Somali blackbird.

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