Common Name

Scientific Name


Photo by Unknown Photographer
Photo Courtesy of Utah Division of Wildlife Resources

The dark-eyed junco, Junco hyemalis, breeds in much of Canada, much of the United States, and part of Baja California. Individuals in the southern portion of the species' breeding range are year-round residents of the same area, whereas individuals in the northern portion of the species' breeding range migrate south to southern Canada, portions of the United States, and northern Mexico for winter. The dark-eyed junco is a common year-round resident in Utah, although some individuals in the state do migrate (mainly to lower elevations) for the winter.

The dark-eyed junco prefers forests, open woodlands, and brushy areas. The nest is a scrape on the ground in a well-hidden location. Females typically lay three to five eggs, which hatch after about eleven or twelve days. The dark-eyed junco is active during the day, and eats seeds, grains, and insects.


  • Biotics Database. 2005. Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, NatureServe, and the network of Natural Heritage Programs and Conservation Data Centers.

  • Peterson, R. T., and V. M. Peterson. 1990. A field guide to western birds, 3rd ed. Houghton Mifflin, Boston. 432 pp.