Large, stocky, long-tailed sparrow. Uniform matte brown body, with buffy throat and orange undertail coverts. Also note reddish-brown crown and messy dark streaks on upper breast (usually with a dark central spot). Occurs in deserts and dry grasslands with scattered dense shrubs. Forages primarily for seeds by running and hopping on the ground. Visits feeders. Essentially no range overlap with the very similar California Towhee; also note Canyon has reddish crown and lacks rusty tones on face.