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Eastern Towhee

Pipilo erythrophthalmus 
Sparrow family (Emberizidae)

A large but shy bird, rarely seend. Male has a black head, back, wings, and tail; reddish-brown sides and flanks; white belly. Female is brown where male is black.

Dense brushy fields, open woodlands

Bulky nest, usually placed on the ground. Eggs are creamy with brown spots. Clutch size – 3 to 5 eggs.


Song has three distinct notes – two whistles followed by a high trill, like “drink your teeeee.”  Sometimes sings the last two notes “your teeee” or just “teeeeee.”  Call is a burry low-pitched “chweeee.”

Name Origin:

The genus Pipilo is from the Latin, pipo, for “chirp” or “peep.”  The species name erythrophthalmus is from the Greek for “red eye.”

In the Nature Park:
Year-round resident. Common in forests and dense shrub thickets at the Nature Park. Its song is easy to recognize.