Eastern Towhee in Winter
Pipilo erythrophthalmus
Oct. 28, 2012

The rufous-sided towhee is now (unfortunately) referred to as the eastern towhee; however, its Latin name remains the same: Pipilo erythrophthalmus.

For the most part, the towhee is a spring and summer visitor; it's atypical to have one in State College, Pennsylvania, during the winter. Nevertheless, a male towhee has been a consistent visitor this year.

Eastern towhee in snow
  One day the towhee decided a bath would be a good idea, despite the freezing cold weather.
Towhee on edge of blue bowl
  Once he made the decision, the towhee hopped in, to test the water.
Towhee in blue bowl
  The water temperature didn't bother the towhee who proceeded to splash away, to the amusement of local sparrows.
Towhee splashing
  As the towhee continued to splash, more and more sparrows came by to watch.
Towhee splashing
  The following day, I saw an exceedingly clean towhee a little beyond the backyard fence.
Towhee, day after bath

I wonder how long the towhee will stay?

Photo note: I used a Pentax K20D, with the Sigma 150-500mm lens, on Dec. 17 and 18, 2013, for these photos.

My Pennsylvania bird list   ||   Eastern towhee (2006)

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