vesper sparrow (Pooecetes gramineus)
CONFIRMATION STATUS: Confirmed.
Length: 5.5 inches
Long, dark tail with white outer feathers
White eye ring
Rusty lesser coverts (not always visible)
Brown upperparts with dark streaks
White underparts with dark streaks
Juvenile plumage (summer) somewhat darker
Found in open fields
Forages on the ground
Male often sings from high perch (tree, telephone wire, e.g.)
When flushed, the white outer tail feathers of the vesper sparrow are
easy to observe. Other birds with this field mark are American pipit,
horned lark, lark sparrow and longspurs. All lack the heavily streaked
breast of the vesper sparrow. When perched, the vesper sparrow looks
similar to several other species of sparrows. Savannah has a yellow
supercilium, pale central crown stripe, shorter tail and lacks rusty
shoulder and eye ring. Song has rounded tail, breast spot, and lacks
rusty shoulder and eye ring. Lincoln's has a buffy breast. Baird's and
juvenile grasshopper are larger-headed and shorter-tailed.
Migration Status: Short distance migrant
Breeding Habitat: Grassland
Nest Location: Ground-low nesting
Nest Type: Open-cup
Clutch Size: 3-5
Length of Incubation: 11-13 days
Days to Fledge: 9(7-14)
Number of Broods: 1-3, usually 2
Diet: Primarily insects and seeds
SKY MEADOWS DISTRIBUTION/SEASONAL OCCURRENCE
Relative abundance and seasonal occurrence are indicated in red below.
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
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.
Sp - Spring: March, April, May U
Su - Summer: June, July, August
Fall: September, October, November O
Winter: December, January, February
Crooked Run Valley