Blackbird nest by Elizabeth Dack 1/5
Credit Elizabeth Dack 2/5
Credit Barry Madden 3/5
Credit Mike Dawson 4/5
Credit Elizabeth Dack 5/5

Blackbird Turdus merula

The bright orange/yellow beak and yellow eye ring make the adult male bird one of the most striking and recognisable British garden birds. It can usually be seen on lawns with its head cocked to one side listening for worms. In spring and summer listen out for its beautiful, melodious song at dawn and dusk.

Conservation status

Common. Classified in the UK as Green under the Birds of Conservation Concern 4: the Red List for Birds (2015). Protected in the UK under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981.

Related questions & advice

Should I feed birds in my garden all year round?
Is it important to keep bird tables and bird feeders clean?
How can I stop sparrowhawks taking birds at my feeders?
What should I do if I find a sick bird in my garden?
What should I do if I find a ringed bird?
What should I do if I find dead birds?
How can I get involved in monitoring bird populations?
How should I feed my garden birds?


Did you know? •    Until about the 17th Century another name for the species was ouzel, ousel or wosel.
•    Normally it will rear 2- 3 broods a year but in a good year a fourth brood may be attempted.
•    The nest is a substantial cup of grass, straw, small twigs and other plant material. The inside is plastered with mud and lined with fine grass. It can take up to two weeks to complete.
•    The fledged young are often left in care of the male while the female prepares for next nesting attempt.
•    Despite smaller clutch sizes, blackbirds in towns fledge more chicks per nest than birds in the countryside.
•    During autumn migrants from Norway, Sweden, and as far east as Finland come to spend winter in the UK.

How to recognise
Where to see
When to see
Find out more
Share this