Mockingbirds Don’t Sing… They Attack!

by Heather Van De Mark on

Apparently some mockingbirds have been getting pretty aggressive over at the WNYC Transmitter Park. The bad behavior–including running their beaks into people’s heads–is pretty common behavior if the birds have baby mockingbirds around to protect. From Wikipedia: “Northern Mockingbirds are born relatively immobile and defenseless. The levels of belligerence exhibited by parents therefore increase once eggs hatch.” Once the baby birds leave the nest, so to speak, the mockingbirds should settle down–unless they develop a taste for blood. posted a pretty funny anecdotal post about it earlier this month, (Not) Forgotten Greenpoint: Transmitter Park – Attack of the Killer… Mockingbirds?


The bird looked at me, I looked at the bird and I knew what was about to happen. I walking quickly away with my dog and the bird proceeded to follow me – again trying to land on my head basically chasing me out of the area.

The NY Times also covered the deadly (not-deadly) mockingbirds’ behavior, In Brooklyn Park, a Fierce New Pecking Order. (Who else read that title and thought it was going to mention hipsters?!)


“It’s so ridiculous,” said Mr. Henry, 44, a children’s book author, as he showed a reporter the site of the attack last Thursday. “I’m scared of a bird.”

Another must-know-fact about mockingsbirds from Wikipedia: “Thomas Jefferson, the third President of the United States, had a pet mockingbird named ‘Dick.'” And that folks, makes my day.

Heather Van De Mark

Heather Van De Mark

Heather is a designer/writer specializing in non-profit organizations and social causes. Originally from central NY, Heather settled into the charming Greenpoint neighborhood in 2011. While most of her community activism takes place from behind a computer screen, Heather can often be found at CB1 meetings, the McCarren Park track and any of the parks along the waterfront.