Thrush Nightingales

The Thrush Nightingales, Luscinia luscinia (formerly colloquially known as Sprosser), is a small passerine bird that was formerly classed as a member of the thrush family Turdidae but is now more generally considered to be an Old World flycatcher, Muscicapidae. It, and similar small European species, are often called chats.

It is a migratory insectivorous species breeding in forests in Europe and Asia. The distribution is more northerly than the very closely related Nightingale, Luscinia megarhynchos. It nests low in dense bushes. It winters in Africa.

The Thrush Nightingales is similar in size to the European Robin. It is plain grey-brown above and grey to white below. Its greyer tones, giving a cloudy appearance to the underside, and lack of the Nightingale’s obvious red tail side patches are the clearest plumage differences from that species.

Males and females look alike.

Thrush Nightingale

The male’s song is loud, with a range of whistles, trills, and clicks. It does not have the Nightingale’s loud whistling crescendo.

Photo of author

Gordon Ramel

Gordon is an ecologist with two degrees from Exeter University. He's also a teacher, a poet and the owner of 1,152 books. Oh - and he wrote this website.

We love to hear from our readers. If you have any questions or if you want to get in touch with us, you can find our contact details on our About Us page.

Leave a Comment