bishib70's picture

Sparrow on feeder

Observed: 1st June 2013 By: bishib70
sparrow on feeder

Wondered if this was a house sparrow? Not sure of the difference between tree/hedge/house sparrows

Species interactions

No interactions present.

Species with which Female House Sparrow (Passer domesticus) interacts


Ray Turner's picture


Male House Sparrows have a grey head with chestnut brown sides. They also have light grey cheeks. Their backs are browner than the female you have pictured here which are generally much plainer.

Tree Sparrows are a little smaller than House Sparrows but the main features to look out for are a completely brown head and lighter cheek with a black spot on it. Males and females look the same so if you see a female sparrow in the UK it is almost certainly a HS.

‘Hedge sparrows’ aren’t really sparrows at all; they are from a group of birds called Accentors, of which they are the only UK species. For this reason iSpot refers to them as Hedge Accentor but most people will know them as Dunnock. They do look a bit like a sparrow and lurk under hedges so you can see why they get their name. Look for the blue-grey head and slim black beak (as opposed to the sparrow’s larger, lighter seed crushing beak).

There are other differences between the species but these are the quick differences to look for in the field. Hope this helps.