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 - Rusty Sparrow
 - Rusty Sparrow

Rusty Sparrow Aimophila rufescens

Marîa Félix Ramos-Ordoñez, Claudia I. Rodríguez-Flores, Carlos A. Soberanes-González, Marîa del Coro Arizmendi, Robert A. Behrstock, and Thomas S. Schulenberg
Version: 1.0 — Published October 18, 2013

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The widespread Rusty Sparrow is found in a variety of vegetation types including scrubby edges of agricultural clearings, oak and pine-oak woodlands, humid montane evergreen forest, and savannas. It ranges from northern Mexico southward to Nicaragua and Costa Rica. It is found a near sea level up to about 2700 m. This large (length 20 cm), well-marked sparrow has two distinctive subspecies groups. The northwestern group - which approaches the U.S. border in the Mexican states of Sonora and Chihuahua - is duller, suggesting Rufous-crowned Sparrow (Aimophila ruficeps) or Oaxaca Sparrow (A. notosticta) with which it shares a rufous crown, dark lores, white on the anterior portion of the supercilium, a pale eye ring, and a dark lateral throat stripe. Note the Rusty’s larger bill, fainter back markings and, in good light, the brighter edges to the tertials. The more widely distributed southern group has brighter rufous wings and tail, a more distinctly marked back, darker lores and lateral throat stripe, and usually shows a darker edge to the chestnut crown.

Distribution of the Rusty Sparrow - Range Map
  • Year-round
  • Migration
  • Breeding
  • Non-Breeding
Distribution of the Rusty Sparrow

Recommended Citation

Ramos-Ordoñez, M. F., C. I. Rodríguez-Flores, C. A. Soberanes-González, M. d. C. Arizmendi, R. A. Behrstock, and T. S. Schulenberg (2013). Rusty Sparrow (Aimophila rufescens), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. https://doi.org/10.2173/nb.russpa1.01