White-crowned Sparrow ((Zonotrichia leucophrys)


The White-crowned Sparrow (Zonotrichia leucophrys) is in the same genus-"Zonotrichia" - as two other sparrows with banded or "zoned" heads, White-throated Sparrow and Golden-Crowned Sparrow. About 7-inches in length, the White-crowned Sparrow has a pink bill (yellow in one subspecies), bold black and white stripes on the head (brown and gray in the first year birds), pure gray neck and breast, fine streaking on the back, and indistinct white wing bars. The White-crowned is a year-round resident in the United States, on the West Coast and in the interior from Nevada to Colorado. In the last fifty years the bird has extended its winter range north and east so that it now encompasses much of the U.S. south of the Great Lakes. The White-crowned Sparrow also has a striking, ethereal song: 1 - 3 high, clear whistles followed by several short, buzzy notes and trills, in somewhat the same pattern as a Song Sparrow.