Wednesday, 29 July 2015

Wild Bird Wednesday 157 - Tree Sparrow

I have to say that Tree Sparrows are not the first bird that comes to mind when I think of sea cliffs - but they were the first bird I saw when I arrived at Bempton Cliffs in Yorkshire. Pretty much every small brown bird around the visitors centre was a Tree Sparrow - and after about 10 minutes I had probably seen more individuals of this species than in the rest of my life put together!

The fact that Tree Sparrows are common on the grasslands at the top of the cliffs is a good indication that the 'tree' in their name is not really accurate - some sources suggest that it is just an alternative to 'house' - meaning that Tree Sparrows are more likely to be found in away from human habitats than their close relative the 'House Sparrow'.

The tree sparrow is technically know as Passer montanus, which makes no reference to trees either!  It can be split from the more common UK sparrow by the clear comma shaped 'ear patch' and the redder (rather than greyish) crown.  I have to say I like them.

I am also rather pleased with the images of the two birds on the concrete post - given that the 'hinge' of the beak is yellow I take it that these birds are just fledged.








Last week we had the lowest number of link ups in the history of WBW (well, at least since I have been running it!) - so, I hope people have not stopped linking because I was 'off duty' for a while - but if you know anybody who often links up, it would be great if you could remind them about our little birding community!

And after that notice from our sponsors (i.e. me!) it's over to you.  Click the blue button and off you go.  Cheers SM

45 comments:

EG CameraGirl said...

The link up numbers may be low because many birders in the Northern Hemisphere are on vacation or because it's hot. Or maybe because so many birds are scarce right now, at least they are here in central Ontario. ;)

eileeninmd said...

Hello Stewart, It does remind me of our House Sparrows. You have some great poses, wonderful series on the Tree Sparrow. It could be possible people are on vacations and not linking up? Thanks for hosting, have a happy week ahead!

Chris Rohrer said...

This is a rather unique looking sparrow. My first instinct was House and then I noticed the black splotch at the back of the cheek. Very nice!

Chris Rohrer said...

Also adding my two cents here. It's vacation time right now and people are busy with family trips and so on. After September, there will be an increase again. I notice the same thing on my blog as well. Plus, for birders in some areas, it's super hot out and the drive for birding...eases up a tad:)

Silver Parrot said...

Marvelous photos - love the two birds cuddled up on the post. I'm guessing summer vacation played a part in the low turnout last week. At least - that's my excuse!

Mama Zen said...

What a pretty little bird!

Sylvia K said...

A pretty little bird indeed and terrific captures as always, Stewart!! Hope your week is going well! Enjoy!!

bailey-road.com said...

Pretty little sparrow, the fledgling look cute on that post.

Phil Slade said...

I must say that the Yorkshire Tree Sparrows look infinitely less shy than our Lancashire equivalents. Here it's difficult to get any picture of a "tresp". Those yorkies always were show offs.

HOOTIN ANNI said...

Lovin' it!!! Especially the 4th image from the top of your post. Adorable setting.

Jo said...

Oh wow, Stewart! The title of this post tickled me: a Tree Sparrow. It looks very similar to our Cape Sparrow. The images are stunning. Thanks for hosting this meme. I'll link tomorrow morning (South African time) Greetings, Jo

Yamini MacLean said...

Hari OM
Yes, lots of folks doing their own 'off duty', Stewart; my bloggies are both down on the numbers a bit. Anyhoo, decided to join in with you this week! ... YAM xx

Linda W. said...

Wonderful photos!

William Kendall said...

They're very distinctive looking birds!

Adam Tilt said...

Really great set Stewart and a reminder that I really need to get back to Bempton cliffs.

DeniseinVA said...

Super photos as always Stewart.

Adam Jones said...

Smashing pictures Stewart. I saw a few Tree Sparrows at Bempton earlier this year. Great birds to see and your pictures are superb. I particularly like the one on the wooden post.

Brian King said...

Excellent shots! I love both the concrete and wooden post photos! I can see why these guys are closely related to House Sparrows.

Kenneth Cole Schneider said...

These little sparrows are reproducing not far from our Illinois home, but I am not really a "chaser," so I have not gone out of my way to see one. Of course, if I should happen to venture into their occupied range I will love to add one of those "European Tree Sparrows" to my life list. Similarly, the American Tree Sparrow (not a "true" sparrow as are those in the Old World) is also more apt to be found foragin in the grass as perched in a tree!

Frank said...

Always good to see a Tree Sparrow as they are a definite rarity anywhere around my location.

Pat Ulrich said...

These are lovely, Stewart. I really like the relaxed poses on the wooden posts.

Gayle said...

You captured them nicely. Especially like them on the pole.
We have an abundance of Tree Sparrows and we have a friendly enough relationship as long as they stay away from the wren house.

GreenComotion said...

Stewart,
This is a lovely collection of the sparrows.
The photo of them on the pillar is so adorable.
Great job!
Thanks for hosting WBW!
Have a Wonderful Day!
Peace :)

pattisjarrett said...

The Tree Sparrow bears a striking resemblance to the House Sparrow. The small ear patch is quite distinctive, especially on the young ones. Great shots, especially with them posed on the posts. How nice of them. :) I think we all appreciate cooperative birds!

Haddock said...

Love that picture of both of them on the post, looking at different directions.

A Quiet Corner said...

Sparrows are one of my popular birds here, Stewart...Song Sparrows. I've just been MIA and hope to stay in the mix once again...:)JP

Marilyn Kircus said...

I am actually linking to last week's post. My post came out while I was off the net in Yellowstone NP. I has NO free wi-fi within the park. I meant to link up when I got home, but fell into bed instead. And your tree sparrows look nothing like ours. They seem to be related to the House Sparrow, which is a weaver finch. I haven't tried to look it up yet, though.

Phyllis Oller said...

They really seem to enjoy their look out posts. They are much like our house sparrows, sweet little bird, thanks for hosting, have a great day! phyllis

Author R. Mac Wheeler said...

awwww...great shots of one of my favorite birds. I miss they don't thrive under our gigantic oaks where I live. I don't think they like to compete with the jays and wood peckers. I love sitting at an outside cafe and watching them twitching around, so peacefully, as though there are no humans within miles. They go from place to place without even seeming to move a wing. Marvelous creatures.

photodoug said...

Stewart, the sparrow is an attractive bird often overlooked by many. Thanks for sharing.

Montanagirl said...

Lovely photos, Stewart!!

Andy Wilson said...

Comfortable sparrow.

Andrea Priebe said...

I assume you didn't notice, but I have been incommunicado for the past two Tuesdays. My computer crashed and it is still in the shop being looked at, but I finally figured out how I could get to your blog on my husbands computer (I know, it took me long enough). So I am commenting on two of your WBW's. First the Tree Sparrow looks very much like our house sparrow and yes we have a tree sparrow that looks like your tree sparrow as well. We call ours the Eurasian Tree Sparrow. Sparrows of all kinds, as plentiful as they are, are cute and fun to watch. Your pictures are, as always, excellent. But, I am amazed that your little fledglings are sitting there looking content. Our fledgies are constantly food begging with their horse little voices filling the air and their yellow lined mouths wide open.

Your Great Crested Grebes are my favorite by far. I saw one in Switzerland and they are gorgeous ... but catching one with the babies on the back, that is to die for. I am amazed at the babies coloring. Very bright and noticeable seems inconsistent with natures plan for blending into the background. I have to ask, because it wasn't clear ... who got the fish, the babies or Mom? Hope to be back soon, but am relieved that I have found a way to keep up with my favorite bloggers ... Have a great week, Stewart (you are back home, right?).

Andrea @ From The Sol

Missy George said...

A bird that I recognize!!! I'm excited..Great shots, Stewart...I guess ours aren't considered tree Sparrows??Hope you are having a good week...Thanks for hosting...

Debbie said...

cute sparrows, they are so beautiful and so often overlooked. thank you for the invite!!!!

June Caedmon said...

These are wonderful captures, Stewart! I have a fondness for sparrows myself. Thanks for mentioning the "yellow hinge" - I noticed it when my mockingbird baby fledged, now I know its a good way to identify fledglings of various species. I hope the link ups are back up to snuff this week. Have a great week!

Mary Cromer said...

They are all wonderful images of the little Sparrows but the ones that you mentioned on the concrete posts are absolutely brilliant Stewart. Well done!!

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

Lovely little guys! Can't we call them cliff sparrows? We have cliff swallows and they look the same as any other swallow to me. On the post, those babies look like they're trying to figure out what they are supposed to do next)).

Thanks for hosting, as always. I suspect some of your US linkers just have the summer doldrums!

Rhodesia said...

Your sparrows seem much the same as ours. I struggle with birds in summer but I usually can get plenty of birds in winter. Like your blog, will be back Diane. Charente, France)

Marie C said...

Your tree sparrows are just wonderful! They look so much like the house sparrows I see every day here. They are a sweet type of bird I think, and pretty. Great photos!

I'm sorry the participation was down last week. I noticed it as well. I think maybe it was just people being tied up with summer trips and activities. Even with the break I took, I still linked in...yours is a VERY important meme to me, and I would hate to miss it!

Liz said...

Wonderful images of this little bird, Stewart!

Christina said...

Such sweeties. They are common in Malmö in Sweden where I live and a lot of them usually sit in a tree outside my window. I wish you a great weekend!

Bethany Carson said...

Beautiful shots! It's really something when photos of sparrows can be neat to look at. Awesome to see beauty in perhaps some of the most common of birds.

CountryMouse said...

I like your pair on the cement post as well ... particularly the one with them snuggled up, maybe for comfort.

NatureFootstep said...

The tree sparrow is very common where I live. Every where I go they sit in bushes and chatter :)