Song Sparrow

Song sparrow for identification

Song sparrows are not as remarkable looking as other backyard birds, but these predominantly brown-streaked birds use their almost constant song to attract mates in spring and summer.

  • Melospiza melodia
  • Length: 4.7-6.7 in (12-17 cm)
  • Weight: 0.4-1.9 oz (12-53 g)
  • Wingspan: 7.1-9.4 in (18-24 cm)


Song Sparrows live all year in northern US States. Those that breed in Canada migrate to southern US states for winter.

Habitat And Diet

You can find Song Sparrows in open, shrubby, and wet areas, often perched on a low shrub singing. They are often found at backyard feeders.

Song Sparrows eat a wide variety of insects and plants, including beetles, caterpillars, midges, spiders, and earthworms. They will also eat buckwheat, sunflower seeds, raspberries, wild cherries, blackberries, wheat, and rice.

Song Sparrow Sounds:

They make a series of unconnected buzzing, trills, and notes rather than a melodious song. They also make sharp alarm calls and chatter calls when in groups.


Nests of Song Sparrows are made from grass and other plant material woven together and lined with soft grass and hair. They lay up to six eggs, which take around two weeks to hatch and just under two weeks for the young to leave the nest.

Attract Song Sparrows

Attract them to your backyard by putting black oil sunflower seeds, cracked corn, and nyjer on platform feeders.

Fun fact:

A study has found that Song Sparrows mix their playlist of songs, so they do not repeat and potentially bore prospective females!