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Abd al-Kuri Sparrow

From Opus

Passer hemileucus


[edit] Identification

13 - 14cm. The only sparrow in its range.

[edit] Male

  • Grey forehead to hindneck and entire upperparts
  • Prominent black eyestripe
  • Broad rufous-chestnut band from above eye and in crescent around rear of light greyish ear-coverts
  • White cheek
  • Back streaked black
  • Prominent chestnut on scapulars
  • Blackish to dark brown upperwings
  • Broad white tips on median coverts
  • Dark brown tail
  • Greyish underparts

[edit] Female

  • Drab brown with greyer upperparts
  • Streaked on back
  • Warm buff supercilium

Juveniles resemble females.

[edit] Similar species

Much paler than Socotra Sparrow.

[edit] Distribution

Endemic to Abd al Kuri (Yemen) in the Indian Ocean, off the Horn of Africa.
Restricted-range species but common to abundant in its range.

[edit] Taxonomy

This is a monotypic species.
Formerly considered conspecific with Socotra Sparrow.

[edit] Habitat

Dry areas and towns.

[edit] Behaviour

Few information about diet. Probably feeds on seeds of grasses and small plants.
Often seen in flocks of 30 to 50 birds.
Breeding season from November to April. Usually two broods. Breeds in colonies of up to ten pairs. The nest is an untidy construction maed of dead grass and placed in a hole in a cliff, a house or tree, also openly in branches of a thorny tree. Lays 3 eggs.
A resident species.

[edit] References

  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2014. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: Version 6.9., with updates to August 2014. Downloaded from
  2. Gill, F and D Donsker (Eds). 2014. IOC World Bird Names (version 4.3). Available at
  3. Del Hoyo, J, A Elliott, and D Christie, eds. 2009. Handbook of the Birds of the World. Volume 14: Bush-shrikes to Old World Sparrows. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions. ISBN 978-8496553507

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