Peak Nuisance Period: Any Time of Year
Common Nuisance Situations:
- House Sparrows are often a nuisance in urban areas like manufacturing and food processing plants.
- Gutters and drainage pipes clogged with sparrow nests can backup and cause extensive water damage and fires have been attributed to electrical shorts casued by machinery housing sparrow nests.
- Feces buildup can lead to structural damage from the uric acid in droppings, plus the bacteria, fungal agents and parasites in the feces also pose a health risk.
Description: The male House Sparrows have black throats and chest patches with light cheeks and a brown nape. The female has a plain brownish chest and a dull eye-stripe. The House sparrow is the number two urban pest bird. Introduced as a species to North America, the house sparrow quickly spread across the country due to its lack of natural enemies and its adaptive traits. Its ability to nest in urban structures, eat urban scraps and a large breeding capacity are some of these adaptive traits. The House Sparrow is actually a member of the weaverbird family and not a true Sparrow. Weaverbirds create intricate nests and relative to their size, the largest nests in the bird world. Their legs and toes are favored for branch perching and their short conical bills are ideal for seed cracking.
Diet: Their diet consists of seeds and grain, as well as fruits, vegetables, human table scraps and insects.
Habitat: They are boisterous, intelligent birds who roost in noisy flocks on branches of city trees, ivy covered walls and under eaves of houses.
Breeding: The House Sparrow is a monogamous species, typically mating for life—though pairs often engage in extra-pair copulations, and lost mates are quickly replaced during the breeding season. Their clutch size is 5-6 eggs and hatch 9-16 days after being laid.