Sparrow (White-crowned, White-throated, Song)

White-crowned sparrow1. White-crowned Sparrow (Zonotrichia leucophrys) _ Length 7″, wingspan 9.5″ (1st photo)
2. White-throated Sparrow (Zonotrichia albicollis) _ Length 6.75″, wingspan 9″ (2nd and 3rd photos)

What they eat: Seeds, insects (White-crowned also eat berries)

Habitat: (White-crowned) meadows, open habitats; (White-throated) woodlands, forests, meadows

Plants that attract: Grasses, shrubs

White-throated sparrowWhere they nest: White-crowned: shrubs; White-throated: on the ground

My observations: I think mature White-crowned Sparrows always look like they’re wearing little hats! As you can see by the top photo, their heads are crowned by rows black-and-white, which makes them quite distinctive. We were tickled to learn recently that we also have White-throated Sparrows in our garden, which have rows of gold and warm-brown feathers on the top of their heads. Since immature White-crowned Sparrows have brown stripes on the tops of their heads, they could possibly be mistaken for White-throated sparrows. However, the white throat patch and gold color near the eyes is a good way to identify the latter. In the¬†third photo, you can more easily see these markings.

White-throated sparrow

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