"I hope you love birds too. It is economical. It saves going to heaven."
Emily Dickinson

Friday, March 24, 2017

California towhees: will perch for food

An uncommon sight: A California towhee visits a feeder in Mission Viejo. Photo by J.J. Meyer

Towhees are no strangers to platform feeders, but they don't typically land on a perch. That's because towhees are ground feeders. They perform what I like to call the "towhee two-step," which involves a hop, scratch, scratch. So I was surprised to see one perched awkwardly at my seed feeder. Granted, it didn't stay long. 

California towhees have short, rounded wings, long tails, and short, conical bills. They're about nine inches from the tip of the bill to the end of its tail and are uniformly matte brown with a reddish patch under the tail. Males are indistinguishable from females.

They're common year-round residents throughout most of California. Entice them to your yard by sprinkling millet or sunflower seeds on the ground.

Happy Birding!

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