Family New World Sparrows (Passerellidae)

Least Concern

Baird's Sparrow (Passerculus bairdii)


French: Bruant de Baird German: Bairdammer Spanish: Chingolo de Baird

Emberiza bairdii


, 1844,

prairie of upper Missouri = eastern Montana near Old Fort Union, USA#R


Sister to P. henslowii, and these two are sometimes separated in Centronyx. Monotypic.


SW Canada from SE Alberta, C Saskatchewan and SW Manitoba, S in N USA to NE & NC Montana (possibly to E Wyoming) and NW South Dakota, perhaps also still NW Minnesota; winters in S USA (SE Arizona, S New Mexico and SW Texas) and N Mexico (NE Sonora E to W Coahuila, S to Durango and N Zacatecas).

Descriptive notes

12–14 cm; 15–21·5 g. A medium-sized, rather short-tailed sparrow. Head is mostly ochraceous, crown heavily streaked with dark brown, a more or less... read more


Song a clear, loud series of ringing notes ending in melodious trill, “zhe zhe she... read more


Breeds in ungrazed or lightly grazed grassland interspersed with scattered clumps of grass and low... read more

Food and feeding

Feeds on seeds, but also takes insects such as beetles (Coleoptera), Orthoptera, Lepidoptera larvae and flies (Diptera), and spiders (... read more


Season late May to mid-Aug; usually single-brooded, sometimes two broods. Monogamous, occasionally polygynous. Nest had coarse exterior... read more


Migratory; movements occur through Great Plains (passage recorded through E Colorado, W & C... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Classified as “Highest Concern” in the USA (Red WatchList priority species for conservation). Locally common in... read more

Recommended citation

Rising, J. & Marks, J.S. (2020). Baird's Sparrow (Passerculus bairdii). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 25 February 2020).