This California Towhee was foraging in its usual way, on the ground, looking for seeds, sometimes scratching with both feet at the same time. It not only snatched loose seeds, it also chewed on bits of straw that had seeds still embedded. It probably doesn’t work long hours the way people do, but when it works, it works fast and keeps moving. For a bird with very little in the way of neck, it has to tip its whole body every time it pecks at a seed on the ground. I have to wonder whether it gets more calories from its food than it burns up pecking. But the bird doesn’t look peaked, so I guess its energy budget is in the black. Towhees are well known for pairing up for life and for feeding as a couple, but at the moment I did not see this bird’s partner, if it had one.
Trivial fact about California Towhees: They can nest in poison oak and eat poison oak berries without harm.