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Chipping Sparrow or American Tree Sparrow-Arkansas, USA

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Old Sunday 25th January 2009, 20:47   #1
Trojansoc
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Chipping Sparrow or American Tree Sparrow-Arkansas, USA

The last couple of days there has been a large flock of sparrows in my yard. My first photos (first 2 below) made me think chipping sparrow, even though I have never seen one here except in the middle of the summer. Today, I began to wonder about the possibility they might be American tree sparrows since they moved around the yard only as a flock and when I looked at range maps, it makes a lot more sense for them to be here in winter. The third shot was taken today, and I noticed the large grey patch at the back of the head. Different birds? All chipping sparrows? Tree sparrows? Any help appreciated.
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Old Sunday 25th January 2009, 20:56   #2
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All Chipping Sparrows for me. Nice shots.
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Old Sunday 25th January 2009, 21:17   #3
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I agree
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Old Sunday 25th January 2009, 21:17   #4
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I agree with Chipping... no dark spot on the breast that would signal tree sparrow.
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Old Monday 26th January 2009, 00:42   #5
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Also notice that a black line runs right through the eye and that the upper mandible is mostly pink. On the tree sparrow the eye line is red, does not run in front of the eye, and the bill is distinctly bicoloured (dark top, light bottom)
http://www.wnp.sk/wnp/pom/pom010_1.jpg

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Old Monday 26th January 2009, 00:45   #6
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Also on a chipping sparrow, even in the winter the darker brown stained patch in back of and below the eye.....a Tree Sparrow wouldn't have that mark...
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