Ring Ouzel

Irish Name: Lon creige
Scientific name: Turdus torquatus
Bird Family: Thrushes
Conservation status


Rare summer visitor from mid-March to September to uplands, mainly in Counties Donegal and Kerry. Scarce passage migrant in spring and amount to coastal headlands.


The same size as a Blackbird. Adult males have glossy black plumage similar to that of the adult male Blackbird. Main difference lies in the broad white crescent on the breast. The wings also tend to be a more silvery colour than would be found on a Blackbird. Adult female Ring Ouzels are a more browner black colour than the males. The crescent is not pure white, more a beige-brown. First-winter Ring Ouzels are similar to adult females, but the crescent is an almost invisible brown smudge. The throat is white with black streaking. Ring Ouzels in the Alps have extensive white arrow markings on the underparts and some Ring Ouzels may have hints of these markings. However, there are as yet no definite records of Alpine Ring Ouzels in Ireland.


A harsh "tuck, tuck", as well as a Fieldfare like "chack". The song is a slowly delivered series of notes repeated two or three times.


Insects, especially earthworms. Also berries and other fruit including apples.


Breeds on scree slopes in mountainous terrain with limited vegetation. Now restricted to only a handful of sites in Ireland.


Wintering areas are poorly known, thought to be southern Iberia and North Africa.

Monitored by

Countryside Bird Survey and BirdTrack.

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