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Which sparrow? 1

unidentified sparrow arizona

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#1 kibuyu


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Posted 19 June 2012 - 04:18 PM

Here's a sparrow that flew into a house at Ruby, Santa Cruz County, Arizona. Habitat is mesquite wooded grassland about 4200ft ASL. I have tried field guides and your search function but still need help with it. Note its mainly gray color, large bill for a sparrow, pale outer tail feathers, eyering, malar stripe. 2 pics of same bird.
Attached File  sparrow1a.jpg   31.9K   38 downloadsAttached File  sparrow1b.jpg   31.33K   42 downloads
Have mostly lived & birded in UK, Tanzania and Arizona. Lifelist ~1062

#2 RyanWarnerPa


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Posted 19 June 2012 - 05:56 PM

Cassin's??? Just an under-educated guess really. I'd almost say it's a Vesper, but if I'm not mistaken they usually have more color. But I'd wait for a more seasoned birder to reply before I'd say it's a Cassin's.

#3 PoorMatty



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Posted 19 June 2012 - 06:27 PM

I would be more inclined to say Botteri's over Cassin's.

EDIT: You note pale outer tail feathers, but from the top side of the outer tail feathers, it doesn't look like there are white corners, which would indicate Cassin's. Also, the bill looks quite large and there are no streaks on the flanks.

#4 BirderMadeleine



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Posted 19 June 2012 - 07:15 PM

My opinion doesn't mean much here since I haven't seen either sparrow in person or of had much experience with telling them apart, but Botteri's was my first thought, and I'm glad to see that Matty agrees.

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