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Baird's Sparrow

Silhouette SparrowsSparrows
Baird's SparrowCentronyx bairdii
  • ORDER: Passeriformes
  • FAMILY: Passerellidae

Basic Description

The clear, tinkling song of the Baird’s Sparrow is one of the defining sounds of the northern Great Plains. Once among the most common birds of the tallgrass prairie, this species is a casualty of habitat alteration and the loss of native grassland to agriculture. This warm, yellowish-brown sparrow with neat black and chestnut streaks spends most of its time on the ground, foraging for insects and seeds. They have lost some 65% of their population since 1968 and are on the Yellow Watch List for declining species.

More ID Info
image of range map for Baird's Sparrow
Range map provided by Birds of the World
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Find This Bird

As with most grassland species, finding Baird’s Sparrows is mostly about finding the proper habitat. In spring and summer, this species can be locally abundant in intact tallgrass prairie reserves in eastern Montana, the Dakotas, and adjacent Canada. Males often sing at or near the tops of grass clumps or scattered shrubs, where they often provide good views. In winter, head to the Chihuahuan grasslands of the southwestern U.S. and northern Mexico.

Other Names

  • Chingolo de Baird (Spanish)
  • Bruant de Baird (French)
  • Cool Facts