House Sparrow

Scientific Name: Passer domestions

Diet: The House Sparrow eats seeds, human food, crops, and especially insects in the summer. The crops they eat include corn, wheat, and sorghum. They also eat crabgrass, ragweed, and buckwheat. The young House Sparrows eat insects.

Habitat: House Sparrows live all across North America and part of South America. They can be found in a variety of habitats, many of which are near humans. House Sparrows live in farmlands, cities, towns, neighborhoods, and urban areas, but avoid large grasslands, forests, and deserts.

Sound: The House Sparrow’s song is a loud cheerp! or cheep! repeated several times. The call is a quick chow!-chow!-chow!-chow!, or chatter.

Nesting: House Sparrows build their nests in a wide variety of places. They put their nests on eaves, bushes, nest boxes, cliffs, street lights, natural cavities, signs, nooks in buildings, or take over other cavity nesting birds’ nests. Both the male and the female build the nest. It is made of grass, twigs, and weeds, and lined with paper, string, and feathers. House Sparrows lay 3 to 6 eggs, and  incubate them for 10 to 14 days. They lay 2 or 3 broods every year.

Behavior: House Sparrows form large flocks, and hop around on the ground foraging for seeds and crumbs. When House Sparrows are nervous, they flick their tails.

Description/field marks: House Sparrows are about 6 or 7 inches long, and have wingspans of about 7 to 10 inches. The males are medium brown on the backs and wings, with streaks of light brown, white, and black. Their throats are black, and their breasts are white, but often speckled with black. Their undersides, flanks, and cheeks are white. The females are very plain. Their backs and wings are a slightly lighter brown than the males, but they are streaked like the males. Female House Sparrows lack the black males have on their throats and breasts, and their throats, breasts, undersides, and flanks are light beige. females also have a faint supercilium and eye line. Both the male and female House Sparrows have brownish pink feet.

How to attract: To attract a House Sparrow to your yard put out a seed feeder. They especially like milo, sunflower, and millet seeds.

Male House Sparrow

Male House Sparrow

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