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Savannah or Vesper Sparrow? Reno NV USA (1 Viewer)

Birds4Kathy

Well-known member
Hi, I saw both of these birds yesterday (Sept 21, 20020) at Swan Lake Nature Study Area on the outskirts of Reno Nevada. At first I thought they were both Savannah Sparrows which are common here but then I noticed that a few Vesper Sparrows are also reported. Are they both Savannah? Vesper? one of each (if so which is which). The more I look, the more confused I get. Any insights into how you determine what they are would be gratefully appreciated! Kathy
 

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bronze sunbird

Well-known member
They can be tricky to sort out. A few things to look for: Vesper Sparrows are very plain/drab sparrows. They are a bit oddly shaped compared to common sparrow - less plump. The white eye ring usually stands out. Savannah is more of a classic sparrow shape (similar to Song Sparrow). In the first image you can see a yellow patch forward of the eye which is a good indicator for Savannah (though not all birds show it).

Hope this helps.! :)
 

Birds4Kathy

Well-known member
Thanks to all of you for helping me to sort this out!!!!!! I will keep all of your insight in mind going forward.

Best Wishes, Kathy
 

KC Foggin

Super Moderator
Staff member
Opus Editor
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United States
Kathy, when you have a problem with an I D, don't hesitate to post an image here. That's what we're here for ;)
 

LucaPCP

Well-known member
Supporter
How do you distinguish Savannah from Song Sparrow? What does one look for?
I posted an ID that was kindly confirmed of a Song Sparrow but I based my ID also on range (Bay Area). Before I checked the range, it looked very similar to Savannah...
 
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