Erithacus rubecula

The robin (Erithacus rubecula) is the cheeky, little bird that is well-known by the orange-red colour in its face, throat, and chest. It is small, about 13 cm from the head to the tip of the tail, with just the thin beak and the tail protruding from its round body. Apart from the orange-red chest, the mantle and the wings are uniform brown while the belly is pale grey. The chest of the youngsters is brown as the back and the wings, not orange. However, new feathers that will growth after the change will be orangish. The eyes are large, round and fully black.

The robin eats invertebrates in summer and fruits and seeds in winter when it also shows up in feeders for birds (photo 7th).

Females build a cup-shaped nest of intertwined grasses and moss in the ground among bushes, in a hole of a tree trunk near to the soil, or in crevices between rocks. From April onwards, the female lays 3 to 6 eggs that she incubates for 2 weeks, until the chicks are born. During this period, the male is busy bringing insects home. The chicks can leave the nest before being able to fly, but the adults still feed them with insects and spiders.

The robin nests and is sedentary in the districts of Bages and Moianès, although the population peaks in winter because the arrival of many wintering robins from northern Europe.

The robin moves in dense forest environments, particularly in holm oaks and bushes, as well as in parks. It displays territorial behaviour. Both in nesting season and in winter, against competitors or other bird species, it defends its small territory with a loud song and displaying itself.

[photos Florenci Vallès (1st), Jordi Badia (2nd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th and 9th) and Oriol Oms (3rd)]