Gray Bunting

Emberiza variabilis

Order

PASSERIFORMES

Family

Emberizids (Emberizidae)

Code 4

GRBU

Code 6

EMBVAR

ITIS

Egg Color:

White with red gray spots



Number of Eggs:

5



Incubation Days:

11 - 13



Egg Incubator:

Female



Nest Location:

In low bush or on ground.



Nest Material:

Lined with fine materials., Grasses and moss.



Migration:

Migratory



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General

Gray Bunting: Medium sized, dark gray bunting with black streaks on back, shoulders, and underparts. Undertail coverts are white. Female has brown upperparts, brown-streaked paler underparts, and chestnut-brown rump. Immature male resembles female but has some gray on head, and is gray below. Rare visitor to Alaska.

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.

Breeding and Nesting

Gray Bunting: Five white eggs spotted with red gray are laid in a nest made of grass and moss, and lined with finer grass, rootlets, and hair. Incubation ranges from 11 to 13 days and is carried out by the female.

Foraging and Feeding

Gray Bunting: Eats primarily seeds but takes some berries and insects, especially in summer months; forages in trees, bushes, and on the ground.

Vocalization

Gray Bunting: Song is a loud, flutelike "houee-tseewee-tseewee." Call is an abrasive "zhiik."

Similar Species

Gray Bunting: Little Bunting has gray-brown upperparts, white underparts, and brown patches on head.

.
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.
UpperpartsX
Back, rump, hindneck, wings, and crown.
RumpX
The area between the uppertail coverts and the back of the bird.
Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X