Gray Bunting

Emberiza variabilis

Order

PASSERIFORMES

Family

Emberizids (Emberizidae)

Code 4

GRBU

Code 6

EMBVAR

ITIS

ILLUSTRATION

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PHOTOS

CONSERVATION STATUS

Least Concern

The Gray Bunting is a very secretive, small species of birds which is also called the Japanese Gray Bunting. This species is native to Asia, but may also be found in the western Aleutians on occasion. These birds prefer thickets in coniferous and mixed forests found on hills and mountains. The Gray Bunting may be found in China, Japan, South Korea, Russia and even the United States. Northern populations migrate southward during winter months. The typical diet of the Gray Bunting includes insects, seeds, berries and fruit. The current conservation rating of the Gray Bunting is Least Concern.

IBIRD EXPLORER GENERAL

PHOTO SHARING AND DISCUSSION

BIRD PHOTOGRAPHY

SUMMARY

Overview

Gray Bunting Breeding Male: Medium sized, dark gray bunting with black streaks on back, shoulders, and underparts. Undertail coverts are white. Heavy, pink bill with black tip, culmen. Pink legs and feet. Short flights, alternates rapid wing beats with periods of wings pulled to sides. Secretive.

 

Range and Habitat

Gray Bunting: Found in East Asia on southern Kamchatka, Sakhalin and the Kuril Islands in Russia to northern Japan. Winters south to the Ryukyu Islands in Japan. Has been recorded in Korea, China and Taiwan. Rare visitor to Western Aleutians. Habitats include mixed deciduous and coniferous forests, in hills and mountains, usually with thickets or dwarf bamboo.

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Gray Bunting SONGS AND CALLS

Similar Sounding


Voice Text

"houee-tseewee-tseewee"

INTERESTING FACTS

  • The Gray Bunting is also known as the Japanese Gray Bunting.
  • It was first described in 1835 by Coenraad Jacob Temminck, the Dutch aristocrat and zoologist.
  • A group of buntings are collectively known as a "decoration", "mural", and "sacrifice" of buntings.

SIMILAR BIRDS

RANGE MAP NORTH AMERICA

About this North America Map

This map shows how this species is distributed across North America.

FAMILY DESCRIPTION

TERMINOLOGY

CREDITS

Author

Gary Owen Dick

Artist

Samira Belous

HELP ME IDENTIFY A BIRD

BACKYARD BIRDING

BIRDS AND BIRDING

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UnderpartsX

Belly, undertail coverts, chest, flanks, and foreneck.

Undertail covertsX
Small feathers that cover the areas where the retrices (tail feathers) attach to the rump.
CulmenX
The uppermost central ridge of the upper mandible.
Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X