Henslow’s Sparrow


Henslow’s Sparrows’ physical characteristics are perfect for hiding in their native environment. They have greenish faces with distinctive black stripes, and pale chests, their bellies are white with a bit of streaking, and they have a reddish backs.

It’s hard to tell the difference between males and females, and even juveniles look similar but with a paler color combination and fewer streaks on their bellies. 

  • Centronyx henslowi
  • Length: 12 – 13 cm (4.75 – 5.25 in)
  • Weight: 14 g (0.5 oz)
  • Wingspan: 18 – 19 cm (7 – 7.5 in)


Henslow’s Sparrows breed in northeastern US states and then migrate to southeastern US states for winter.

Habitat And Diet

You can find Henslow’s Sparrows in wet, weedy, and dense grasslands. However, their natural habitat is slowly disappearing, and they are now making their way towards abandoned farm fields, pastures, and anywhere they can find dense, tall grasslands. 

Henslow’s Sparrows are highly secretive birds preferring to stay low and forage at the bottom of grass stalks. They eat seeds like sedges, ragweed, and smartweed. They also eat insects in the summer, such as grasshoppers and caterpillars. They’ve been known to eat berries, too. 

Henslow’s Sparrow Call/Song:


Nests of Henslow’s Sparrows are made from grass and wildflowers placed in slight hollows or at the base of dense clumps of grass. The female lays three to five eggs, which she incubates for eleven days. It takes ten days for the young to fledge, and they are still cared for by their parents for a short period even after they leave the nest. 

Fun Fact:

Henslow’s Sparrows prefer to run through dense grass rather than fly from danger.