The robin is a songbird. It is one of the best-known songbirds in Europe. Males and females look the same. They are rounded in shape and easily recognizable by their red-colored throat. That’s where her name comes from. This patch of color runs from the face down to the neck down to the chest.
The rest of the plumage is brown and gray. A robin weighs about 15 grams and is about 13 cm tall. The robin is at home in Europe, North Africa, parts of Turkey, and most of the Mediterranean islands.
The robin stays with us all year round. In northern Germany, however, the robin is also a migratory bird. So it flies south to spend the winter there.
The robin is still common. The greatest danger is that its natural habitats will disappear as more and more land is heavily used by humans. Due to environmental pollution and toxins in agriculture, there is less and less food available in many places. In some areas, songbirds such as the robin are also hunted.
On average, robins live for just over a year. The worst for them are very cold winters. Despite everything, they are not endangered. However, the oldest known robin lived to be over 17 years old.
The robin has twice been voted “Bird of the Year” in Germany, for the first time in 1992. In 2021 it was voted “Bird of the Year” again. The Bird of the Year is chosen annually by conservation organizations to draw attention to different birds so that they can be better protected.
How does the robin live?
The robin lives in forests, bushes, and hedges, but also in parks and gardens. The robin doesn’t like it hot, preferring to live somewhere shaded and damp.
It likes to eat insects, worms, and spiders. It also feeds the young with it. It also eats fruits, seeds, and berries. In winter you can therefore observe it well at bird feeders. The robin is not very shy: you can get relatively close to it without it fleeing.
In the middle of March, it builds a nest and the female lays her eggs in it. Robins often breed twice a year. Instead, they build a new nest. However, some robins do not build their own nest at all, instead using the abandoned nests of other bird species or nesting in human-owned items such as pots, watering cans, or even shoes. It also likes to use nesting boxes.
The parents also defend their nests against much larger animals. The female incubates alone, but the male feeds his partner in the meantime. To do this, the female leaves the clutch so as not to reveal where the nest is located. For the same reason, once the young have hatched, the parents remove the eggshells and young manure from the nest.
A clutch consists of five to seven eggs. The young hatch after about two weeks. You are then still naked and blind. The young usually stay in the nest for fifteen days. They then fly away but stay on the ground and hide. There they are fed and defended by their parents for another week. After that, they are expelled from the territory since the parents usually start another brood.