Brown Thrasher (Toxostoma rufum)
- Length: 9.1–11.8 in (23–30 cm)
- Wingspan: 11.4–12.6 in (29–32 cm)
- Weight: 2.2–3.1 oz (61–89 g)
- Color: vibrant reddish brown with a speckled buff and brown chest and belly
- Eyes: bright yellow
- Feeding: Omnivorous (Insects, other arthopods, fruits, and nuts.)
- Vocalization: known to have perhaps over 3000 unique songs in their repertoire.
In Hot Springs National Park Brown Thrashers are found in dense brush, Trees and Bushes. They are omnivorous and can be seen foraging in dry Leaves for Insects or plucking Berries from Bushes and Trees. Brown Thrashers can also be found in perennial gardens and where they are often spotted jumping from the ground to catch insects on flowers. My observations have noted they are gregarious and curious about humans that frequent their territory. Although they are highly territorial I have never been met with any aggression even during mating season. This does not mean they may not attack animals or humans that get too close to their nests.
My first encounter with a Brown Thrasher in the park was when I initially believed I was going to see a someone using a Nintendo Game Boy. I came around the bend on a trail to discover it was a Brown Thrasher mimicking Super Mario World. After 10 minutes of spectacular auditory acrobatics it flew away. I have since this first encounter heard them sing glorious tunes, imitate cell phone ring tones and mock other birds. Brown Thrashers are always a wonderful sight in Hot Springs National Park.