Bermuda towhee

The Bermuda towhee (Pipilo naufragus) is an extinct passerine of the towhee genus Pipilo that was confined to Bermuda. It was a large member of the genus and closely related to the eastern towhee. The scientific description was in 2012, based on Pleistocene and Holocene remains from Quaternary cave deposits. 38 bones from at least five individuals are known.

Bermuda towhee
Temporal range: Pleistocene-Holocene
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Passeriformes
Family: Passerellidae
Genus: Pipilo
P. naufragus
Binomial name
Pipilo naufragus
Olson & Wingate, 2012

Pipilo sp. undescribed Olson & Hearty, 2009

An old travel report by William Strachey who was shipwrecked on Bermuda from 1609 to 1610 might refer to that species. He wrote in 1625:

Sparrowes fat and plumpe like a Bunting, bigger then ours.[1]


  1. ^ Strachy [ = Strachey], W. 1625. A true reportory of the wracke, and redemption of Sir Thomas Gates Knight; upon, and from the ilands of the Bermudas: his comming to Virginia, and the estate of that Colonie then, and after, under the government of the Lord La Warre, July 15, 1610. Written by William Strachy [sic], Esquire. Pp. 1734–1758. in S. Purchas. Hakluytus Posthumus or Purchas his Pilgrimes: contayning a history of the world in sea voyages and lande travells by Englishmen and others, vol. 4. Henrie Fetherstone. London. (Reprinted in Lefroy 1981:35).
  • Olson, Storrs L.; Wingate, David B. (2012). "A new species of towhee (Aves: Emberizidae: Pipilo) from Quaternary deposits on Bermuda". Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington 125 (1): 85–96.
  • Olson, Storrs L.; Hearty, Paul J. (2009). "A Sustained +21 m Sea-Level Highstand during MIS 11 (400 Ka): Direct Fossil and Sedimentary Evidence from Bermuda". Quaternary Science Reviews, 28(3-4): 271-285