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Birds and Wildlife

White-crowned Sparrow
Polly Adcock
September 2020

Usually if there is a pleasant day in January while the soil is damp, I will make a SPD walk around the flowerbeds looking to eliminate Speedwell (should be call spread well), Pop Weed, and Dandelion. My feathered friends have brought in more varieties of weeds. They must have decided to “shelter in place” a few years ago and brought their favorite foods to my yard! Why did they plant it under the densest and thorniest bushes!?

Many times this year the White-crowned Sparrows have “chirped” (scolded or warned) me. Once I figured out the warning, I started to LOOK around and sure enough on the ground or chest high there would be its nest – with baby birds.

They have nested in several places around the yard. After finding a ground nest, I WAITED to pull the excess Love-in-the-Mist and Montbretia (orange Crocosmia). After ripping out a handful of vegetation I was horrified to discover another nest about six inches from the last one complete with babies. Oops! Pardon me.

The female White-crowned Sparrow builds the NEAT nest. Both sexes of this monogamous pair feed the young. The male continues to feed the young while the female starts another nest. They may have 2 - 4 broods per year.

Their diet consists of seeds, insects, caterpillars and parts of plants. They hop on the ground and forage by scratching. At feeders they will eat baby chick scratch and seeds.

On May 16, 2007 The Sequim Gazette posted a picture of a White-crowned Sparrow at the top of an evergreen tree with “Audubon Bob” Boekelheide's translation of the sparrow's song as “See me, pretty, pretty, me.”