“Oregon” Dark-eyed Junco

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As with the Fox Sparrow, the Dark-eyed Junco has several “types”. The “type” we generally see in the San Francisco Bay Area is the “Oregon” Dark-eyed Junco. And yet within that “type” there are 5 subspecies found as either residents or migrants within the state. Differences between them are clinal, and poorly delineated, so this portrait is probably a composite. While the identity of the subspecies shown in my sketch may be vague, one thing is certain: The “Oregon” Dark-eyed Junco is arguably the fanciest of the types, and while not a California specialty among Sparrows, it is certainly something many easterners don’t get to enjoy every day like us.

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