Large distinctive crested bunting, referred to as Elegant Bunting by some sources. Overall color pattern similar to that of a Horned Lark. Adult male: Broad black mask extends from the loral area, through the eye, to the nape. Entire crown and pointed crest also black; bold, wedge-shaped supercilium widens from front to back, starting out white on supraloral area, extensively lemon yellow above the eye, and white again at the back. Brown stripe down nape and hind-neck with gray patch on hind-neck between the brown stripe and the auriculars. Extensive yellow on chin and throat; narrow strip of white that broadens on the side of the neck separates yellow throat from the black, crescent-shaped breast band. Whitish underparts with streaked brownish flanks. Gray back with brown streaks. Stripey brownish wings with two indistinct wing bars. Grayish rump and dark tail with white tail edges. Pink legs. Adult female: Similar to adult male, but lacks black on head and breast. Auriculars are dusky-brown, throat and malar area mostly with a poorly defined brownish malar stripe. Lacks a breast band, sometimes replaced by streaky breast. Juvenile: Similar to adult female, but paler. Dark eye and small grayish bill.
Length: 15 (cm) Wingspan: 20 (cm)
Woodlands, woodland edges and open areas with scattered trees or brush.
Often form flocks in winter. Forages on the ground.
Diet consists of seeds.
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