The Grasshopper Sparrows, Ammodramus savannarum, are small sparrows that were named from their calls which are reminiscent to those sounds make by grasshoppers.
Distribution / Range
They can be found in southern Canada, the United States, Mexico and Central America, Columbia, and Ecuador.
Species from the north migrate to the southern United States, Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean.
They inhabit grasslands and marshes.
Species population has rapidly declined in certain areas, including a 98% drop in New York State.
The species is also endangered in the Andes of Columbia and Ecuador.
They measure 10 – 14 cm in height and have a wingspan of about 17.5 cm.
Adults have upperparts streaked with brown, grey, black and white; they have a light brown breast, a white belly and a short brown tail.
The face is light brown with an eye ring and a dark brown crown with a central narrow light stripe.
There are regional variations in the appearance of this bird.
Diet / Feeding
They forage on the ground in vegetation, mainly eating insects, especially grasshoppers, and seeds.
Nesting / Breeding
They breed in open fields and prairie across southern Canada and the United States. Their open cup nests are well concealed on the ground under vegetation.
Call / Vocalization
Their calls are described as a buzz – similar to the sound made by grasshoppers.