California Towhee

Melozone crissalis

This little brown bird is a member of the sparrow family that you can see or hear just about anywhere on campus.  Look for it scratching with both legs in the leaf litter, or singing its high-pitched call from the top of a shrub.  In the first recording, you can hear the more complex song sung in spring; in the second recording of the dawn chorus, you can hear its more typically high-pitched single-tone repetitive call (with a spotted towhee trilling in the background.) For a picture of a California towhee nest, see the Breeding Birds page.

Photo Credit: Alan Sparkman

Audio Credit: Holly Covington