Eastern Towhee

Fast Facts:

  • Common Name:
    Eastern Towhee
  • Scientific Name:
    Pipilo erythrophthalmus
  • Diet: Omnivore
  • Size: 6-8 inches long
  • Weight: 1-1.8 ounces


Male eastern towhees are mostly black with reddish-brown sides and white corners on the ends of their tails. Females look similar, but instead of black, are dark brown. From a distance, the males may be mistaken for robins.

Habitat and Migration

Eastern towhees are found in brush, thickets, or along the edges of forested areas from southern Saskatchewan to Texas, through the eastern United States. Towhees living in the north will migrate south for winter. They spend a good deal of their time on the ground, which is why they’re more likely to be found where underbrush is heavy, to conceal themselves from predators.

Social Behavior

Nests are typically found lower to the ground, hidden by shrubbery. Breeding starts in the spring, continuing through late summer. While more territorial during breeding season, as winter hits, eastern towhees are less likely to be aggressive and may even join flocks of other species.

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