A Sparrow I Can Actually Identify

For the record, I’d like to proclaim that it is currently miserable outside. I know this because I had to complete a training run tonight and by mile 2 I looked liked I had taken a swim in the local pool. The truck temp gauge registered 84 but if that was true the humidity must have been adding at least 20 degrees to the “feels like” temp. The remaining 3 miles (a short run tonight) eventually dripped by. At least the body is finally getting some heat conditioning for the upcoming Bix7 race. I mention this primarily because hot days like this remind me of Vegas – we were once there in the 114 to 117 degree range – and when I think of Vegas the memories of the Henderson Bird Viewing Preserve now quickly follow. Keeping the string alive, here is ANOTHER new bird for the checklist. Ironically, this happens to be a bird that is local for us .. in fact, one of those birds that typically gets ignored because it is a member of the Sparrow family.

Typically, this translates to a brown and gray bird, medium to small sized with white highlights adorning the wing feathering. Unfortunately, there are at least 20 different species of Sparrows that look nearly identical. Followers of this blog will probably remember cases where a shot of these birds is simply referred to as … a Sparrow. Taking the time to figure out what it is exactly is not a good use of time because after all it is really just a Sparrow. When this adult was spotted hanging out in the brush it looked distinct enough to give a go at classifying it. That meant it was worth taking a few shots – the composition looked appealing as well, especially since it was giving the classic cross body pose (above) that typifies my personal style. Of the three shots, the first one is my favorite with the nicely blurred background and glint in the eye.

This is one of those birds that tends to look quite different depending on your viewing angle. You can really see the crown on the top of the head when looking at it straight on, but from the side it tends to provide a more common domed profile as in the shot below.

Hit the jump to read a little more about this new bird to the Blog

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