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Browsing is a valuable way to learn about birds, however it is a brute force approach and not designed for identification. A more sophisticated approach to finding a bird with specific field marks is to use the Step by Step Search. You can also try the Wizard to find a bird, which uses a question and answer approach, but again it does not give you the flexibility of the Step by Step Search.

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California Towhee
California Towhee: Large sparrow, uniform brown-gray body, faintly streaked underparts, buff throat bordered with dark streaks. Tail is long with cinnamon-brown undertail coverts. Pink-brown legs and feet. Short flights with rapid beating wing strokes alternating with wings pulled briefly to sides.
Pinyon Jay
Pinyon Jay: Small, crestless, stocky jay with blue-gray body. Head is darker blue and has pale streaks on throat. Tail is short. Bill, legs, feet are black. Feeds on pine seeds, grain, fruit, berries, insects and eggs and young of other birds. Steady bouyant and direct flight with deep wing beats.
Steller's Jay
Steller's Jay: Large crested jay with a black head and crest and a blue body. Head has slight white eyebrow, forehead, and chin spots. Wings and tail are blue with black bars. Feeds on pine seeds, acorns, fruit, frogs, snakes, carrion, insects and eggs and young of other birds.
Yellow-billed Magpie
Yellow-billed Magpie: Large jay with black hood, back and breast, featherless, pale yellow spot behind eye, and white belly. Bill is yellow. Upperwings are iridescent blue-green with large white shoulder patches. Tail is iridescent green-black, very long, and wedge-shaped. Legs and feet are black.
House Sparrow
House Sparrow: This medium-sized stocky sparrow has black-streaked brown upperparts, pale gray underparts, brown wings with a single white bar, pale gray cheeks and crown, black throat, upper breast, and a short, thick, black conical bill. Female lacks black and is pale gray-brown overall with buff eyebrows. Feeds mostly on grains and seeds. Agile fliers with an undulating flight pattern.
Mallard
Mallard: This medium-sized duck has a gray body, chestnut-brown breast, green head, white neck ring, yellow bill, wing speculum is white-bordered metallic purple-blue, white edged dark tail, two curled black feathers, and orange legs and feet. Feeds on insects and crustaceans. Females are mottled brown with orange-brown bills and no curled tail feathers. Swift direct flight with strong wing beats.
California Quail
California Quail: This medium-sized quail has a curled black head plume, white-bordered black throat, gray breast, sharply scaled belly, brown flanks with white streaks, olive brown back, gray legs and feet. Female has a gray throat with a black streak. Feeds on seeds, plants and insects. Alternates rapid wing beats with short glides.
Blue Jay
Blue Jay: Medium, noisy jay with bright blue upperparts, pale gray underparts, distinct head crest, and neck surrounded with a curious black necklace. Black-barred wings and tail have prominent white patches. Direct flight with steady and bouyant wing beats. Glides between perches or to the ground.
Spotted Towhee
Spotted Towhee: Large sparrow, white-spotted black back, black rump. Black breast, white belly, rufous sides. Head is black and eyes are red. Wings are black with white spots. Tail is long and black with white corners. Short, bounding flights, alternates rapid wing beats with wings pulled to sides.
American Crow
American Crow: Large, black bird with dark, stout bill, iridescent violet gloss on body, and blue-black wings. Tail is fan-shaped in flight. Eats insects, small invertebrates, amphibians, reptiles and mammals, eggs and young of other birds, grains, fruits, refuse, and carrion. Steady direct flight.
Brewer's Blackbird
Brewer's Blackbird: Medium-sized blackbird with purple gloss on head and neck and green gloss on body and wings. Eyes are yellow. Follows farm tractors and plows. Forages on ground. Feeds on caterpillars, insects, fruits, seeds and grains. Strong, swift and direct flight with rapidly beating wings.
Brown-headed Cowbird
Brown-headed Cowbird: Small blackbird with glossy brown head, heavy bill, and dark eyes. The black body has a faint green sheen. Walks on ground to forage and holds tail cocked over back. Feeds on caterpillars, insects, spiders, fruits, grains and seeds. Swift direct flight with rapid wing beats.
California Scrub-Jay
California Scrub-Jay: Medium, crestless jay, blue head, wings, tail, gray mask, back, pale gray underparts. Dark-streaked, white throat bordered by dark necklace. Bill, legs, feet are black. Eats grains, fruits, insects, frogs, lizards, and eggs and young of other birds. Flies with steady wing beats. Split History. Split from Western Scrub-Jay into two species, the California Scrub-Jay and Woodhouse's Scrub-Jay in 2016 by the American Ornithologist Union.
Dark-eyed Junco
Dark-eyed Junco: Medium-sized sparrow with considerable geographic color variation, although all exhibit a pink bill, dark eyes, white belly, and dark-centered tail with white outer feathers. Gray-headed form has gray head, rump, breast, and sides, and rust-brown back. Slate-colored form is slate-gray overall with darker head. Oregon form has black hood, chestnut-brown back and buff-brown flanks. White-winged form is blue-gray overall and shows two white wing bars. Pink-sided form is blue-gray with darker wings and pink-gray flanks. Female of each form resembles male but is usually paler. Juveniles of all forms are heavily streaked brown with darker heads, white bellies, and white outer tail feathers.
Red-winged Blackbird
Red-winged Blackbird: Small blackbird with jet-black body and bright red shoulder patches edged with yellow on bottom. Runs or hops while foraging on the ground. Eats seeds, grains, berries, fruits, insects, caterpillars, spiders, snails, grubs and mollusks. Strong direct flight on rapid wing beats.
Band-tailed Pigeon
Band-tailed Pigeon: Large dove, small, purple-gray head and broad neck with distinctive, thin white band on nape. Back and wings are purple-gray, underparts grade from purple-gray neck and breast to white belly. Tail is pale gray, dark band at base. Bill, legs,feet are yellow. Swift direct flight.
Rock Pigeon
Rock Pigeon: This is a large, highly variably colored dove. The wild form has a gray body, dark blue-gray head, neck, breast, and white rump. The wings are gray with two black bars. It has a gray rounded tail with a dark terminal band. Forages on the ground; feeds on grass, seeds, grains, clover and berries. Swift direct flight. Sexes are similar.
Mourning Dove
Mourning Dove: This medium-sized dove has gray-brown upperparts and pink-brown underparts. The eyes are dark with a small black spot beneath. It has a dark bill, gray-brown wings with black spots and dark primaries. The tail is long and pointed, with black-edged white tips on outer feathers. Mostly feeds on seeds. Swift direct flight. Sexes are similar, but the male is slightly larger.
California Thrasher
California Thrasher: Large, slender thrasher with dark brown upperparts and paler gray-brown underparts. Face is finely streaked, eyes are dark, and black bill is very long and down curved. Throat has small buff patch. Tail is long with reddish-brown undertail coverts. Legs and feet are gray-brown.
Chipping Sparrow
Chipping Sparrow: Medium, slender sparrow with black-streaked brown back and pale gray underparts. Cap is rufous, nape is gray, throat is white, and face stripes are black-and-white. Black bill. Pink-orange legs and feet. Short flight, alternates several rapid wing beats with wings pulled to sides.
Ring-necked Pheasant
Ring-necked Pheasant: This large chicken-like pheasant has a metallic-brown body, iridescent green head, white neck ring, red eye patch and wattles, and a long pointed tail. Female is pale brown overall with dark markings, has shorter tail and lacks wattle. Diet includes seeds and insects. Swift direct flight with strong wing beats. First introduced to California from Asia as a game bird in 1857.
Common Ground-Dove
Common Ground-Dove: Small, rounded dove with plain gray-brown back and scaled pink-gray head and breast. Eyes are red and bill is orange-red with black tip. The wings show rufous primaries in flight. Tail is short. Legs and feet are pink. Forages on ground. Swift direct flight with rapid wing beats.
Spotted Dove
Spotted Dove: This medium-sized dove has gray-brown upperparts and pink-brown underparts, a pale gray cap, dark eye-line, white-spotted black nape patch and black bill. It has a long and gray tail with black edges and white corners and pink legs and feet. It feeds on grains, seeds and scraps. Swift direct flight with rapid wing beats. Sexes are similar.
White-winged Dove
White-winged Dove: Medium-sized, stout dove with gray-brown upperparts, gray underparts, and small, black crescent below eye. The wings are dark gray with broad white stripes. Tail is short and brown with white corners. Bill is gray. Legs and feet are red. Fast direct flight with rapid wing beats.
Boat-tailed Grackle
Boat-tailed Grackle: Large, black bird with a very long, keel-shaped tail. Male is iridescent blue-black with yellow or brown eyes. Black bill is slender and long. Legs and feet are gray. Forages walking on ground and wading in water. Strong direct flight with rapidly beating wings.
Yellow-headed Blackbird
Yellow-headed Blackbird: Medium-sized blackbird with black body, bright yellow hood and breast, and distinct white wing patches. Bill, legs and feet are black. Forages in low vegetation and on the ground. Feeds on insects, larvae, snails, seeds, and grains. Strong direct flight on rapid wing beats.
Common Grackle
Common Grackle: Medium-sized blackbird with metallic purple sheen on back, head, neck, and breast. Eyes are bright yellow. Central feathers of long, rounded tail are often lowered to show keeled V-shape. Swift, strong direct flight with rapid wing beats, holds tail folded in a V shape while flying.
Great-tailed Grackle
Great-tailed Grackle: Large blackbird, iridescent black body and purple sheen. Yellow eyes. Long, keeled tail. Walks on ground, wades in water to forage. Eats snails, insects, frogs, shrimp, small fish and birds, eggs and young of other birds, fruits, berries, seeds and grains. Strong direct flight.
Tricolored Blackbird
Tricolored Blackbird: Medium-sized blackbird that is mostly black with a glossy blue tint overall. Shoulder patches are bright red and bordered with white. Lives in flocks year round.Feeds on insects, spiders, caterpillars, and seeds from weeds and grains. Strong direct flight on rapid wing beats.
Wild Turkey
Wild Turkey: This large, ground-walking bird is iridescent dark brown overall with black and green bars and a small, featherless blue head that changes color with mood. Red throat wattles, black breast beard and legs with spurs. Female is smaller, duller, and lacks spurs and beard. Diet includes insects and grains. Swift powerful flight for short distances with rapid wing beats and deep strokes.
Canyon Towhee
Canyon Towhee: Large sparrow, gray upperparts, pale gray underparts, large central breast spot, and white belly patch. Crown is rust-brown. Tail is long with brown undertail coverts. Legs are pink-brown. Short flights with rapidly beating wing strokes alternating with wings pulled briefly to sides.
American Tree Sparrow
American Tree Sparrow: Medium, gray-brown sparrow, black and rufous-brown streaks on back, wings. Crown, eyestripes, flanks are rufous-brown, contrasting with gray face. Pale gray breast with dark central spot, rufous-brown sides. Upper mandible is dark gray, lower mandible is yellow.
Brown Thrasher
Brown Thrasher: Medium thrasher, rufous upperparts, black-streaked, pale brown underparts. Eyes are yellow. Brown-black bill curves down, lower mandible has pale base. Wings have two white and black bars. Tail is long and red-brown. Legs and feet are brown. Fast flight on shallow, rapid wing beats.
Bronzed Cowbird
Bronzed Cowbird: Small blackbird (aeneus), brown-black overall with blue sheen on wings and tail. Eyes are red and bill is dark and heavy. Feeds on insects, seeds and grains. Often follows cattle to eat insects that are kicked up. Swift direct and swooping flight with rapid wing beats.
Mexican Jay
Mexican Jay: Large, crestless jay, blue-gray back, blue head, wings, rump, tail, and pale gray underparts. Bill, legs, feet are black. Feeds primarily on acorns, also eats insects, fruit, carrion and eggs and young of other birds. Slow steady bouyant wing beats. Glides between perches.
Yellow-eyed Junco
Yellow-eyed Junco: Medium sparrow with rufous back and upperwings, pale gray rump and head, and pale gray underparts. Bright yellow eyes contrast with faint mask. The belly is white; tail is dark gray with white outer tail feathers. Bill has black upper mandible and pink lower mandible.
Abert's Towhee
Abert's Towhee: Large, stocky, shy sparrow. Distinct black face, pale gray bill, gray-brown upperparts, paler gray-brown underparts, and rust-brown vent. Tail is long and darker than upperparts with rust-brown undertail coverts. Short flights, alternates rapid wing beats with wings pulled to sides. May be difficult to spot because it prefers to stay well-hidden under bushes.
Montezuma Quail
Montezuma Quail: Odd, plump quail with short tail, complexly buff-barred and streaked dark upperparts, and heavily white spotted dark underparts divided by a wide rufous-brown stripe from breast to tail. Face is boldly patterned black and white; head has a rounded light brown crest.
Mountain Quail
Mountain Quail: Large,striking quail with long elegant black head plume, white-bordered rufous-brown face and throat, gray-brown upperparts, blue-gray breast, and rufous-brown belly and sides with distinct white bars. Rapid direct flight, series of several stiff wing beats followed by a short glide.
Northern Bobwhite
Northern Bobwhite: Medium, morphologically variable quail, most with unique head pattern of white face and throat, dark eyestripe, rufous-brown (eastern and Great Plains) or black (Florida) center stripe on top of head. Body shows a mottled combination of black, brown, rufous-brown, and gray.
Plain Chachalaca
Plain Chachalaca: Loud, phesant-like bird. Drab in color with gray head, olive-brown back, buff belly, dark tail with green gloss. Male shows bright red gular stripe during courtship displays. Feeds on insects, fruits, berries, seeds, leaves and buds. Alternates rapid stiff wing beats with glides.
Scaled Quail
Scaled Quail: Large quail AKA "cottontop," due to its white-tipped gray crest; nape, neck underparts have dark-edged gray and buff feathers creating a distinctly scaled look. Upperparts are plain gray with white stripe at base of wings; sides are gray with short white stripes. Pale brown legs, feet.
Red Junglefowl
Red Junglefowl: This direct ancestor of the domestic chicken has golden-orange and bronze-red upperparts, red comb and wattles, blue-green, rufous, and brown-black underparts, large iridescent, green-black tail, white feather patch at tail base, and gray legs and feet. Female is dull brown-gold with pale red face and throat. Feeds on seeds, grains, and insects. Short direct flight.
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