History of house sparrows in Australia and New Zealand

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How to identify house sparrows

What do house sparrows look like?

The male has a conspicuous grey crown, black face and throat, and dark black and brown upperparts. The remainder of the under parts are pale grey-brown. When breeding, the black of the throat extends to the chest and upper belly. The bill also changes from brown to black.

The female is slightly paler than the male and lacks the grey crown and black face, instead having a pale buff eye stripe.

For more information, see the Birds in Backyards website.

Behaviour and habitat

House sparrows are noisy birds that have lived around humans for centuries. They like hang out in groups that vary in size depending upon the habitat. In the city  they are often found on the streets (often near cafes!), in parks, and even your roof or trees at home. They flutter down from high places to hop around and peck at crumbs or seeds. In rural areas, they are often found in large flocks around farms, particularly where there is lovestock and grain.


Participant instructions

  • Historical nesting records
  • Breeding attempts
  • Nest box monitoring


Guidelines for submitting data

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Participant Code of Conduct

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