The Chipping Sparrow is a small sparrow with a slightly notched tail and–during the breeding season–a distinctive russet cap. Gray underparts and a gray rump contrast with streaked wings with two white wing bars. A clear, gray band runs across the nape of its neck, splitting the brown- and black-streaked head and back. In breeding plumage, the Chipping Sparrow has a white stripe over its eye with a dark stripe below it, a gray cheek, and a lighter throat patch. Juveniles are streaked and, while some molt earlier, most Washington birds keep their juvenile plumage through the fall migration. In non-breeding plumage, the closely related Clay-colored Sparrow is similar in appearance. The Clay-colored can be distinguished from the Chipping by a brown, rather than gray, rump, a darker face pattern, and the absence of a moustache. The two species also use different habitats, but are sometimes found in mixed flocks in the non-breeding season.

First Sighting of Year

Tuesday, March 31, 2015 1314-8 Assembly St Columbia SC United States
Sunday, February 14, 2016 248€“272 Island Dr Rowley MA United States
Sunday, January 1, 2017 537 US Route 1 Freeport ME United States
Saturday, February 24, 2018 15805 El Monte Rd Lakeside CA United States
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