|Originally known in Britain as just Redbreast from the late 14th century (replacing the older name Ruddock), |
this confiding little bird gained a first name, as sign of affection.
Robin Redbreast (Robin being a 'pet' form of Robert) appeared in the 16th century; in time the 'surname'
was dropped, leaving just Robin as the name.
It is generally recognised now as one of the big assemblage of Old World Flycatchers,
family Muscicapidae, though there are still those who regard it as a thrush.
Photo courtesy Wikipedia.
|Scarlet Robin male Petroica boodang, Canberra.|
The resemblance with the 'true' robin of Europe is fleeting at best.
In North America a similar situation arose, though that robin is unequivocally a thrush, Turdus migratorius.
|Scarlet Robin female, Canberra (close to my home in fact).|
She shares her mate's white forehead spot (not visible in the male above)
but has only a red wash on her breast.
|Male Flame Robin, Namadgi National Park, above Canberra.|
His breast is orange rather than bright red, and whereas the Scarlet Robin has a broad black bib
round his throat, the Flame Robin's breast flame licks right up to his beak.
|Female Flame Robin, Namadgi NP (and in the mist! It's not your eyes or, on this occasion, my photo).|
She always lacks the female Scarlet's reddish breast wash, and her wing bars are notably
more emphatically black and white.
|Fledgling Red-capped Robin, Mount Grenfell Historic Site, New South Wales.|
The sharp insect-snapping bill is evident even in this youngster.
|Male Rose Robin, Turner.|
This is a truly lovely bird, and moreover it builds one of the most beautiful nests I know.
|Rose Robin male, Monga NP, New South Wales.|