Black-Headed Grosbeak 

SCIENTIFIC NAME: Pheucticus Melanocephalus 

Black-headed Grosbeak

Males have a black head, and black wings and tail with prominent white patches. Its breast is dark to tawny orange in color, and its belly is yellow.

Females have a brown head, neck, and back with sparrow-like black streaks. There is also white streaks down the middle of the head, over the eyes, and on the cheeks. Breast is white, and wings and tail are grayish-brown with two white wing bars and yellowish wing edges.

Juveniles resemble females.

BILL: gray, very thick and cone-shaped.

SIZE: measures about 7.1 - 7.5 inches in length, with a wingspan of 12.6 inches.

WEIGHT: weighs about 35 - 49 grams.

COLOR: black, white, orange, yellow and grayish-brown.

Insects, seeds, fruits, and berries.

Primarily deciduous forests, woodlands, and groves. Sometimes found in mixed forest, rarely in pure coniferous forest.

Southwestern British Columbia, through the western half of the United States, into central Mexico. It occurs as a vagrant further south in Central America.

SONG: A fast, high-pitched warbling.  

CALL: A high crisp "pik".

NEST: The female builds a bulky, open saucer nest with fine grass, rootlets, twigs, bark, and conifer needles. It is often lined with rootlets, hair, and fine plant material.

EGGS: 2 - 5 pale green, blue, or gray eggs spotted with reddish and dark brown.

INCUBATION: 12 - 14 days, both sexes.

NESTLING PHASE: 10 - 14 days.

They primarily forage by moving through branches and foliage of shrubs and trees, gleaning insects from foliage and taking fruit.

They also forage on the ground, or occasionally by flying out and capturing insects in mid-air.

The oldest known Black-headed Grosbeak was a male, at least 11 years, 11 months old.

Black-headed Grosbeak Infographic





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