Passerculus Sandwichensis – Savannah Sparrow

Passerculus Sandwichensis - Savannah Sparrow

The Savannah sparrow, Passerculus sandwichensis in Latin, is a small New World sparrow that lives in the Savannah region. It was the only member of the genus Passerculus at the time of its discovery, and it is still the only member that is widely accepted today. This species belongs to the family of Passerellidae.

Quick Overview: Passerculus Sandwichensis – Savannah Sparrow
Body size: Around 5.25-6.25 in (13-16 cm) and a weight of 23 g (0.8 oz)
Main colors: Gray-brown, White, Brown, Yellow, Pink
Range: Throughout the United States
Migratory Bird: Yes
Best time of the year to see in the U.S.: January, February, June, July, August, September, December
Conservation Status: Least Concern

Savannah sparrow Description

Small sparrow with dark streaks on gray-brown and white underparts, with heavy streaking on the breast and sides. Its brown crown is accented with a pale central stripe, and its pale yellow or white eyebrows stand out against the brown background. Two pale bars are visible on the brown wings. The tail is short and notched at the base. Legs and feet that are pink.

Passerculus Sandwichensis - Savannah Sparrow
Passerculus Sandwichensis – Savannah Sparrow. Source: Wikipedia


These birds have a length of 5.25-6.25 in (13-16 cm) and a weight of 23 g (0.8 oz). Their wings could range 8-9.5 in (20-24 cm).


It subsists on seeds, insects, spiders, and occasionally snails. They primarily consume seeds, but during the breeding season, they will also consume insects


Salt marshes, grasslands, tundra, mountain meadows, sandy regions, and short-grass prairies are all habitats for this species.


These birds forage on the ground or in low bushes; in winter, they can also be found in grazed low-growth grassland, which is particularly common. During the breeding season, they are typically encountered in pairs or family groups, and during the winter migration, they congregate in large flocks. The flight call is a thin seep of information. According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature, the Savannah sparrow is a threatened species. Chirps and trills are interspersed throughout the song.

Passerculus sandwichensis Scientific Classification

  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Chordata
  • Subphylum: Chelicerata
  • Class: Aves
  • Order: Passeriformes
  • Family: Passerellidae
  • Genus: Passerculus
  • Species: Passerculus sandwichensis


The Savannah sparrow has many subspecies, some of which have been split off as separate species. The plumage coloration of the various forms varies.

Best time of the year to see

The best time to see these birds in the United States are during summer (June to September) and winter (December to February).

Distribution of the Savannah sparrow in the USA

Breeds from Alaska east to Labrador and south to New Jersey, Kentucky, and northern Mexico, with the majority of breeding occurring in Alaska. Winters are spent traveling north from Mexico to the southwestern British Columbia and Massachusetts regions. These birds are commonly found and seen all throughout the United States.

The Savannah sparrow can be found in the following states in the United States – Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming.

Passerculus Sandwichensis – Savannah Sparrow

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