WGOG: The varied thrush

Just be quiet

A beautiful bird. It looks to be the size of a large mango, and shares many of the same colours. Its belly is a golden yellow, and its wings and head are coloured charcoal, intricately pattered with its warm colours. It has orange stripes across its wings, head, and throat. Overall, it is stunning.
This bird is not too beautiful to be above criticism. PHOTO: Jennifer Uppendahl

By: Michelle Young, Copy Editor

I’m sleeping soundly in my bed, feeling toasty under the blankets. Then, the sound of a whistle. Not once, not twice, but from the early morning to early evening — at irregular increments. It is the varied thrush: a tiny bird with an extremely loud and annoying call. The first time I heard it, I thought it was some kind of traffic whistle. It rings for hours and hours and it’s inconsistent. It disturbs my sleep, it disturbs my work, it disturbs my peace. 

Why must this small bird scream for so many hours of the day? Why can’t it be satisfied with a few “caws” like a crow and be done? Why does the varied thrush insist on singing randomly with no rhythm, no grace? Does it not get tired? 

Every time I hear this call, I am filled with deep annoyance, anger, and a headache. It’s just loud enough to notice it, it pauses long enough to forget about it, and then it begins whistling again. I’m not sure what this bird is doing in the suburbs to begin with — its habitat is in thick forests near the coast. Please, go there instead, and annoy the other forest animals to your heart’s content.