I became a birdwatcher quite by accident in January of 2013. I was stuck in the house due to disability from Multiple Sclerosis, and I had nothing much to take photos of. We've always had a bird feeder set just outside the kitchen window in the winter months. My goal was to feed the birds, not take photos. Upon endless hours inside, I started to watch the feeder, and take pics. I remember some of my first shots were "just" hoards of sparrows gutsing out at the feeder.
Now, months later, I am fascinated by birds, and I love taking photos of them.
Here are some of the sparrows that frequent my feeders, and I can now identify most members of the "hoards".
The Chipping Sparrow is a slender, fairly long-tailed sparrow with a medium-sized bill that is a bit small for a sparrow. Summer Chipping Sparrows look clean and crisp, with frosty underparts, pale face, black line through the eye, topped off with a bright rusty crown. It can be distinguished from the American Tree Sparrow by it's black, rather than rufus eye stripe.
The White-crowned Sparrow is a large sparrow with a small bill and a long tail. It has bold black and white head stripes, clean gray throat and breast, pale brown sides, gray belly and a brown and gray streaked back .
The White-throated Sparrow is a large, full-bodied sparrow with a fairly prominent bill, rounded head, long legs, and long, narrow tail. They are brown above and gray below with a striking head pattern. The black-and-white-striped head is augmented by a bright white throat and yellow between the eye and the bill, which is gray. They’re also a great entrée into the world of birdsong, with their pretty, wavering whistle of Oh-sweet-Canada. These forest sparrows breed mostly across Canada, but they’re familiar winter birds across most of eastern and southern North America and California.
House Sparrows aren’t related to other North American sparrows, and they’re differently shaped. They are chunkier, fuller in the chest, with a larger, rounded head, shorter tail, and stouter bill than most American sparrows. Male House Sparrows are brightly colored birds with gray heads, rufus sides, white cheeks, and a black bib.
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