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Bird of the Week: House Sparrow

7 August 2010 No Comment

The House Sparrow (Passer domesticus) is a member of the old World sparrow family Passeridae. It occurs naturally in most of Europe and much of Asia. It has also followed humans all over the world and has been intentionally or accidentally introduced to most of the Americas, sub-Saharan Africa, New Zealand and Australia as well as urban areas in other parts of the world. It is now the most widely distributed wild bird on the planet.

The House Sparrow is a very social bird. It is gregarious at all seasons when feeding, often forming flocks with other types of bird. It also roosts communally, its nests are usually placed together in clumps, and it engages in a number of social activities, such as dust and water bathing, and “social singing”, in which birds call together in bushes. The House Sparrow feeds mostly on the ground, but it flocks in trees and bushes.

Size & Shape:

This is a small chunky bird sized upto 14 to 16 cm long. It has a large rounded head, a short tail, and a stout bill.

House Sparrow Male

(House Sparrow – Male)

Colorization:

The male House Sparrow has a grey crown, cheeks and under parts, black on the throat, upper breast and between the bill and eyes, rusty-brown nape and upperparts, white patch in wing. The bill in summer is blue-black, and the legs are brown. In winter the plumage is dulled by pale edgings, and the bill is yellowish brown.
The female has no black on head or throat, nor a grey crown; her upperparts are streaked with brown, white patch in wing.
The juveniles are deeper brown, and the white is replaced by buff; the beak is dull yellow.
Female House Sparrow

Diet:

Primarily consists of seed and grain .Insects, spiders, and fruits are consumed in summer. In the absence of these they are known to be adaptive and are quick to forage through garbage for food.

Call/Song:

A series of ‘cheep, chirrup’
House Sparrow

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