Range. - North America, breeding north of our borders; winters in northern half of the United States and casually farther south.
All Shrikes are similar in nature and plumage, being grayish above and white below, with black wings, tail and ear patches, and with white outer tail feathers and bases of primaries; the present species may be known by its larger size (length over 10 inches) and wavy dusky lines on the breast. They are bold and cruel birds, feeding upon insects, small rodents and small birds, in the capture of which they display great cunning and courage; as they have weak feet, in order to tear their prey to pieces with their hooked bill, they impale it upon thorns. They nest in thickets and tangled underbrush, making their nests of vines, grasses, catkins, etc., matted together into a rude structure. During April or May they lay from four to six grayish white eggs, spotted and blotched with yellowish brown and umber; size 1.05 x .75.