song sparrow (Melospiza melodia)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CONFIRMATION STATUS: Confirmed.

 

IDENTIFICATION:

  • Length: 5.5 inches

  • Conical bill

  • Brown crown

  • Grayish face and supercilium

  • Brown streak extends behind eye

  • Thick malar streak

  • Brown back with darker streaks

  • Brown wings with some rust

  • Underparts white with heavy dark streaks and central breast spot

  • Long, brown, rounded tail

  • Sexes similar

  • Juvenile (summer) similar to adult but buffier

  • Considerable variation in plumage across its range from dark to rusty upperparts and in bill size and shape

Similar species:

The song sparrow can be told from the Lincoln's sparrow by its larger
bill, heavier streaking on the breast and flanks, lack of buffy color on
the breast and face, brown back, larger size and longer tail. Juvenile
song sparrows are very similar to juvenile swamp and Lincoln's
sparrows. Savannah sparrow is similar but smaller-billed and shorter-
tailed with a yellowish supercilium. Fox sparrow is much larger.

 

LIFE HISTORY

Migration Status: Short distance migrant
Breeding Habitat: Successional-scrub
Nest Location: Ground-low nesting
Nest Type: Open-cup
Clutch Size: 3-5
Length of Incubation: 12-14 days
Days to Fledge: 9-12(-16)
Number of Broods: 2-3, occasionally 4
Diet: Mostly seeds; lesser quantities of insects

 

SKY MEADOWS DISTRIBUTION/SEASONAL OCCURRENCE

 

Relative abundance and seasonal occurrence are indicated in red below.

 

Relative abundance
     C - Common: Likely to be present in good numbers in appropriate habitat and season.
     U - Uncommon: May be present in appropriate habitat and season, often in low
            numbers.
     O - Occassional: Found in appropriate habitat perhaps only a few times per season,
            sometimes low numbers.
     R - Rare: May not be recorded every year.
     Acc - Accidental: Recorded once or twice, may not be expected again for a long time.

 

Seasonal Occurrence
      Sp - Spring: March, April, May
C
      Su - Summer: June, July, August U
      Fall: September, October, November C

      Winter: December, January, February C

 

 

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