WatchList Species Account for California Thrasher
(Toxostoma redivivum)

Qualifies for the list as a Declining Yellow List Species

Photo: © Dick Cannings, NatureServe
Photo: Tom Grey

Resident in the coastal and foothill areas of California, the California Thrasher is found from northern California into areas of northwest Baja California. This large thrasher is common in dense chaparral but also found in oak woodlands, sage and pine-juniper scrub and sometimes even in parks and gardens. Its attractive song is heard year-long.


It breeds from sea level to higher parts of the montane chaparral community. It comes readily to bird feeders, especially in the winter.


The population size is estimated broadly at around three million pairs, down perhaps 5% through habitat loss since about 1950. No downward trends are indicated in undisturbed habitat, but habitat-clearing clearly results in population decline. It may be impacted by pesticide poisoning. The species is affected by habitat fragmentation, and has disappeared from the Monterey Peninsula due to development, maturation of pine forest and reduction of understory scrub, and heavy use by tourists.