Yellow-eyed junco

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Yellow-eyed junco
Junco phaeonotus MtLemmon.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Passeriformes
Family: Emberizidae
Genus: Junco
Species: J. phaeonotus
Binomial name
Junco phaeonotus
(Wagler, 1831)

The yellow-eyed junco (Junco phaeonotus) is a species of junco, small American sparrows. It is the only North American junco with yellow eyes.

Its range is primarily in Mexico, extending into some of the mountains of the southern tips of the U.S. states of Arizona and New Mexico. Not generally migratory, but sometimes moves to nearby lower elevations during winter. The female species lays three to five pale gray or bluish-white eggs in an open nest of dried grass two to three times a year. Incubation takes 15 days, and when hatched, the chicks are ready the leave the nest two weeks later. This bird's diet consists mainly of seeds, berries and insects.

Madera Canyon, Arizona


Similar to the situation in the dark-eyed junco, this species's systematics is still in need of much research before they can be considered resolved. Four subspecies groups are usually distinguished. These are, north to south:

  • Mexican junco, Junco phaeonotus phaeonotus.[2]
High mountains of Mexico, southeastern Arizona and southwestern New Mexico.
  • Baird's junco, Junco phaeonotus bairdi.[3]
High mountains of Baja California Sur
  • Chiapas junco, Junco phaeonotus fulvescens.[4]
High mountains of Chiapas, southeast Mexico.
  • Guatemala junco, Junco phaeonotus alticola.[5]
High mountains of eastern Chiapas (southeast Mexico) and Guatemala.


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