Since the brown thrasher lives in Georgia throughout the entire year, it is easy to believe it does not migrate. However, banding studies have revealed some brown thrashers migrate while others stay at home. Consequently, ornithologists classify this master songster as a partial migrant.
Banding studies have revealed that some brown thrashers that breed in New England make their way to the Carolinas and Georgia in the winter. By the same token, brown thrashers that breed east of the Mississippi are often regular winter residents across a broad swath of the South from Arkansas to Georgia.
Consequently, when you see a brown thrasher scratching away the leaves beneath one of your shrubs this winter, you have no way of knowing whether it has been living in your backyard throughout the year or recently made the flight to Georgia from Massachusetts, Ohio or other state far to the north of the Peach Strata.
As for me, I care not whether the thrashers I host in the winter are permanent residents or not. I am just glad they chose to winter close to my home.
I always thought they were local. Very interesting.
It is amazing what current research is revealing about birds. I too used to think thrashers were not migratory.