SCIENTIFIC NAME: Pipilo erythrophthalmus
OTHER NAMES: Chewink, Swamp Robin, Bullfinch, Red-eyed Towhee, Ground Robin, Jo-ree, Brush-bird, Turkey Sparrow, Rufous-Sided Towhee
STATUS: Breeder. Common in all seasons and regions. Low Conservation Concern.
DESCRIPTION: A large sparrow shaped bird, seven to eight inches in length with a wing- span of 10-13 inches and weighing one to two ounces. The adult male has a black head, throat, upper chest, and back. The wings are mostly black with white patches and white edging. The tail is also black with conspicuous white patches at the tips of the outside tail feathers. Most of the breast and the entire abdomen is white. The sides and beneath the tail area are rufous giving rise to the birds former name the Rufous-Sided Towhee. The beak is black and the eyes are red except in the Florida panhandle where they are yellowish-white. The scientific name means red eyed chipper. The Florida panhandle Eastern Towhee merits a subspecies classification Pipilo erythrophthalmus alleni. The adult female is colored similar to the adult male but has shades of brown where the male is black. Immature Eastern Towhees are marked in the general pattern of the adults but with more brown or gray than black. Also they have streaked upper breasts with the remaining under parts a dull white.