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House Sparrow

Scientific Name:

Passer domesticus




Urban, suburban, or rural areas near farms


Continental United States, Mexico, southern Canada, South America, eastern Australia, and southern Africa (introduced), Europe and Asia (native)


No listed status

This species is


to the Truckee Meadows.


House Sparrows are six inches in length and weigh one ounce. Males have white cheek feathers and black bibs under their beak. They are more reddish-brown than females, who have buff-brown feathers. They can be easily recognized in flocks as they are social birds that feed on the ground or in low bushes.

Fast Facts:

  • House Sparrows are tied to human life and movement. They can survive in many habitats, helping them inhabit one of the largest ranges of any wild bird.

  • Ornithologists (scientists who study birds) have recorded House Sparrows over 2,000 feet below ground in mine shafts and on observation decks of the Empire State Building!

  • These sparrows feed on seeds, grains, or insects.

  • Males with more black feathers in their bib have a higher social status than males with smaller bibs.

  • House Sparrows were largely introduced to the western states in the 1870s by birds released in Salt Lake City and San Francisco.

  • They are in the Old World sparrow family (Latin: Passeridae).



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Last Updated:

March 27, 2024 at 1:48:22 AM

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