Northern Mockingbird

Northern Mockingbirds are the only mockingbird that are permanent residents of the United States.  In Las Vegas, the Northern Mockingbird can be found year-round and it frequents the feeders and bird bath in my backyard all year.

The Northern Mockingbird is the ‘bully’ of the birds that come to feed in my backyard.  They are more aggressive and will displace sparrows, finches, mourning doves and collared doves from the feeders when they come to my backyard to feed.  They don’t generally stay long, so the disruption to the other birds is minimal, but noticeable.

Below a pair of Northern Mockingbirds share the top of a suet feeder while eating on the peanut butter suet block.  Generally, if two of the birds are in my backyard they will each take over one of the suet feeders in my yard and don’t normally share.

A pair of Northern Mockingbirds share a suet feeder.

A pair of Northern Mockingbirds share a suet feeder.

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A Northern Mockingbird eats from a backyard suet feeder.

The other day a recently fledged Northern Mockingbird visited my backyard.  Mockingbirds can have between 2 and 4 broods a year.  The mockingbird will lay between three and five eggs, which hatch after about 11 to 14 days of incubation.  Northern Mockingbirds fledge from 10 to 15 days of life.

A recently fledged Northern Mockingbird.

A recently fledged Northern Mockingbird.

This juvenile Northern Mockingbird visited my yard and still wanted to be fed by the parent he had followed from the nest to my backyard.  The parent, after feeding at the suet feeder, returned to the brick wall to feed his baby.

The juvenile Northern Mocking bird gets ready to be fed by its parent.

The juvenile Northern Mocking bird gets ready to be fed by its parent.

The baby opened its mouth and made chirping noises to get the parents attention.  The parent then placed some of the suet in the baby’s mouth.

A juvenile Northern Mockingbird is fed on a backyard brick wall.

A juvenile Northern Mockingbird is fed on a backyard brick wall.

After the parent returned to the suet feeder, it was obvious the juvenile was still hungry, as it signaled to the parent with its open mouth and chirping that it wanted more food.

A hungry juvenile Northern Mockingbird.

A hungry juvenile Northern Mockingbird.

The parent returned to feed the juvenile one more time.

A juvenile Northern Mockingbird is fed by its parent.

A juvenile Northern Mockingbird is fed by its parent.

After the second feeding, the parent returned to eat at the suet feeder and then flew off, likely to feed its other babies still in the nest.

The juvenile Northern Mockingbird found my bird bath shortly after the parent left and after perching on the rim of the bird bath put his head down to take a drink of water.

A juvenile Northern Mocking bird sits on the rim of my backyard bird bath.

A juvenile Northern Mocking bird sits on the rim of my backyard bird bath.

A juvenile Northern Mockingbird takes a drink from my backyard bird bath.

A juvenile Northern Mockingbird takes a drink from my backyard bird bath.

The Northern Mockingbirds always make their presence known when they fly into or near my backyard.  They often perch at the top of my neighbor’s roof, singing to let birds in the area know they are there.  After a few minutes the swoop down to the brick fence before flying to one of the suet feeders and scaring the other birds away momentarily.

Northern Mockingbirds can be found in a lot of the United States and is the state bird of five states.


To learn more about Northern Mockingbirds visit the websites below (clicking on the website name will take you to the Northern Mockingbird page):

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3 thoughts on “Northern Mockingbird

  1. Hello Neldon. I have Northern Mockingbirds nesting in my backyard. Whenever I see the parents, I also see a pair of sparrows close by. Is it possible for them to lay their eggs in the same nest?

    Susan in Sylmar

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    • Hi Susan, I would doubt that the Sparrows have laid eggs in the Mockingbirds nest as both Mockingbirds and Sparrows are pretty aggressive birds. If you have a feeder or other food source nearby it is more likely the sparrows are attracted to the food source and making sure the Mockingbird is busy before attempting to feed. I have several feeders in my back yard for birds and most of the time I will find many sparrows feeding, but as soon as a Mockingbird fly’s near to feeders, either directly to the feeder or a nearby fence the sparrows scatter. They stay nearby in the trees and wait for the Mockingbird to finish and leave. I’m guessing you are observing a similar thing between your nesting Mockingbirds and Sparrows. Thanks for visiting the blog!

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