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    • Nancy
      Participant
      Chirps: 6
      07061946
      I live in Johnson Co Ia, which is in the SE quarter of the state. I regularly see my first migrating robin of the spring on or about Feb. 8. We also This year I didn't see a robin until a month later, about March 7th. Today is the 22nd of March and I have still only seen a handful of robins. We didn't have a severe winter here and lost our snow cover relatively early. Temperatures haven't risen to normal seasonal highs yet, though. Does anyone know of reasons that may have delayed the robin migration so dramatically?
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    • Lee Ann van Leer
      Bird Academy
      LilacRoller
      Hi Nancy, Some American Robins migrate while others stay put throughout the winter. However their physiology changes in the winter time to where they are relying mostly on fruit such as berries during the winter and not as much on bugs.  Since they aren't breeding in the winter they can leave their territory and join large flocks of robins and/or cedar waxwings moving around to spots where different types of fruit is at its peak in calories and nutrients. Each plant that has animal edible berries may reach this peak at a different month than other plants. So the robins and waxwings are able to find some type of berry to eat throughout winter.  To find the American Robins in your area in the winter you'd have to be doing a lot of birding in forests or places where large amounts of fruit is at its peak. You won't normally see birds in your back yard or downtown until the weather is warm enough to find bugs, worms in those areas. European Starlings are another bird that has their physiology change seasonally. They eat more fruit/berries in winter than in the warmer seasons. American Robin Range Map You will see at that range map that Colorado is a "year round" state for robins. More info about robins in winter and timing   Some interesting facts from our All About Birds account of American Robins:
      Although robins are considered harbingers of spring, many American Robins spend the whole winter in their breeding range. But because they spend more time roosting in trees and less time in your yard, you're much less likely to see them. The number of robins present in the northern parts of the range varies each year with the local conditions. Robins eat a lot of fruit in fall and winter. When they eat honeysuckle berries exclusively, they sometimes become intoxicated. Robin roosts can be huge, sometimes including a quarter-million birds during winter. In summer, females sleep at their nests and males gather at roosts. As young robins become independent, they join the males. Female adults go to the roosts only after they have finished nesting. Robins eat different types of food depending on the time of day: more earthworms in the morning and more fruit later in the day. Because the robin forages largely on lawns, it is vulnerable to pesticide poisoning and can be an important indicator of chemical pollution.
    • Barbara
      Participant
      Chirps: 6
      bk55238
      Hi Nancy! I cannot answer your question but here is what is happening with robins where I live. I live on LI in NYS. For the last couple of years I have noticed that robins have not been migrating but rather they stay here during the winter which is fairly cold, except for this year. I have been wondering why they no longer migrate and if they migrate in any other part of the country. It's very odd. I wonder if this caused by climate change. We have the same situation with Canadian geese. They used to migrate here from Canada but I think for at least the last 15 years, maybe more, they no longer migrate. They have become permanent residents.
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