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Field Sparrow Spizella pusilla


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Field Sparrow
credit: NPS

© Lang Elliot/ (audio)

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Family: Emberizidae, New World Sparrows view all from this family

Description ADULT Has a dark-streaked reddish brown back and wings with two white wing bars. Face is gray overall, but has a rufous crown and eyestripe. Underparts are washed rufous on breast and flanks. JUVENILE Similar to adult, but heavily streaked below.

Dimensions Length: 5 1/4" (13 cm)

Habitat Common summer visitor (mainly Apr-Aug) to grassy, weedy fields with nearby scrub; found year-round in much of southeast and winter range extends to Mexico.

Observation Tips Easy to see. Sometimes perches in bushes when disturbed.

Range New England, Great Lakes, Texas, Florida, Southwest, Mid-Atlantic, Eastern Canada, Rocky Mountains, Plains, Southeast, Western Canada

Voice Song is a series of rich, whistling, disyllabic tee-oo phrases, ending in an accelerating trill; call is a sharp tik.

Discussion Superficially similar to American Tree Sparrow, but distinguished by its uniformly pinkish (not bicolored) bill and absence of breast spot. Chipping Sparrow has a different face pattern: dark eyestripe and white supercilium. Forms flocks outside breeding season. Eastern birds are marginally warmer brown overall than western birds. Sexes are similar.