Savannah Sparrow

Passerculus sandwichensis

Savannah Sparrow, Passerculus sandwichensis, photo © by Michael Plagens

Sta. Cruz Flats, Pinal Co., Arizona, USA, 1 January 2015.

Savannah Sparows inhabit open areas across North America, but are absent during the hot summer months in the Sonoran Desert. With the arrival of wintery weather they migrate south and many spend the winter in the warmer deserts of Arizona. These are small sparrows; noticeably smaller than house finches. Streaking on breast that may or may not be congealed into a ‘stick pin’ and the whitish or yellowish stripe above the eye.

A good supply of seeds, especially grasses, is required and so grasslands and agricultural fields are preferred. Savannah Sparrows will be found in the deserts only in years with abundant winter rains.

Winter Resident - Returns to Northern United States and Canada in Summer

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More Information:

Sonoran Desert Field Guide
Sonoran Desert Places
Sonoran Desert Naturalist Home Page


Copyright Michael J. Plagens, page created 9 Dec. 2009,
updated 2 January 2015