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Tree Sparrow

Passer montanus (Linnaeus, 1758)

Полевой воробей | Жауторғай
spring plumage

2006-04-17
Uralsk, Kirov park, West Kazakhstan oblast
© Askar Isabekov

Description

The adult spring Tree Sparrows have brown crown and neck and white flanks. The lore, under eye strip and the spot on the rear part of the ear coverts are black. The mantle and shoulders are clayey-brown with black longitudinal strips. The rump and uppertail are buffy-brownish. The lesser wing coverts are rusty-chestnut, median coverts are black with the white tips formed the wing bar; the greater coverts are dark-brownish with the broad clayey-yellow edges and white tips. The primaries are dark-brownish with the narrow light edges on the outer web and the bad expressed light tips. The secondaries are black-brownish with broad clayey-yellow edges. The tail feathers are grayish-brownish. The underparts are dirty-white, there is large black patch on the chin and throat. The flanks are olive-grey. The bill is black, legs are light-brownish, claws are rosy, eyes are dark-brown. In fresh plumage after the molting the light-buffy edges of the feathers are well expressed; the bill is brownish-black. Juveniles have the grayish-brown crown and neck; and the buffy-grey with dark-brown strips mantle. The wings are paler, the edges on feathers are narrower than on adults. The spots on the head's flanks and on the throat are grey. Weight 17,0-28,0 grams, wing 66-75, tail 47-57 mm.

Distribution

The Tree Sparrow in Kazakhstan lives throughout near the human settlements excluding highlands and waterless deserts. Mostly breeds in the towns and villages; only in forest and steppe-forest areas it can live in the forest; and on south in clay falls of foothills. The detailed distribution in Kazakhstan please see in the chapter "Races".

Biology

In Kazakhstan the Tree Sparrow is common resident. It inhabits mainly in the towns and villages, but on Ural valley prefers to nest in forests. Sometimes it lives in forest-belts, gardens, clay precipices; during not-breeding season observed on fields, gardens and thickets of tall weeds. Breeding in separate pairs, often close one to other. Nest is built in constructions' hollows, under the roofs, in precipice holes (made by Bee-eater, Sand Martin or Kingfisher), in raptors, crows or swallows nests, in tree holes; gladly in the nesting boxes. Both parents build nest from dry grass, rootlets and bast and inlay it by feathers, hairs and downs. Clutches of 2-9 (usually 5-6) eggs are laid in early April – first decade of July. Both parents incubate on 11-13 days, and feed juveniles, which fledge at 12-17 days old. Fledglings recorded in end May – mid-September. Two or three broods are reared per year; repeated breeding after loss of nest is very often. As well as other sparrow the Tree Sparrow eats seeds, including tame cereals. But it feeds juveniles by insects only. During not-breeding season the Tree Sparrows live by flocks up to several dozen birds, often on mixed flocks with House Sparrows.

Subspecies

Passer montanus montanus (Linnaeus, 1758)

    Description. The upper parts and the crown are darker; the black streaks on the mantle are broader than on dilutus.
    Distribution. Breeds in the northern half of Kazakhstan in south roughly to 48-49 parallel. Lives on Markakol lake.

Passer montanus dilutus (Richmond, 1896)

    Description. The upper parts and the crown are lighter; the black streaks on the mantle are narrower than on montanus.
    Distribution. Breeds in the southern half of Kazakhstan in north roughly to 48-49 parallel. Regularly in a little number migrates on Chokpak Pass, where it was caught on March 3 - May 23 on spring migration, and on September 16 - October 26 on autumn one.

References

"Птицы Казахстана" том 5. "Наука". Алма-Ата, 1974. Э.И.Гаврилов. "Фауна и распространение птиц Казахстана". Алматы, 1999. Gavrilov E. I., Gavrilov A. E. "The Birds of Kazakhstan". Almaty, 2005. А.Ф.Ковшарь "Певчие птицы". Алма-Ата, "Кайнар", 1983.

supplement

subspecies

Passer montanus montanus
(Linnaeus, 1758)
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Passer montanus dilutus
(Richmond, 1896)
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hybrids

Passer (montanus x domesticus)
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