Species monomorphic. In general, breast and flanks have dirty brown streaks, some of which form a central spot on the breast. Wings, upper tail-coverts, and rectrices rufous to dark sooty brown. Mantle coloration gray with rufous streaks, or unstreaked gray to sooty brown. Bill bicolored, with upper mandible blackish brown and basal edges dull orange or yellow. Lower mandible orangish or yellowish with grayish-brown tip (Weckstein et al. 2002).
For a comprehensive review of the conservation status, habitat use, and ecology of this and other Montana bird species, please see Marks et al. 2016, Birds of Montana.
Western Hemisphere Range
Species prefers areas of thick cover, usually around forest edges and brushy woodland edges. Also found in grown-up fields, cut-over woodland, and scrubby woods.
Diet consists mainly of insects. Other food sources include seeds, fruit and plant matter.
Near Fortine, egg dates range from June 24 to July 5, although flying young were seen as early as June 12.