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Species Guide

Sind Sparrow

Passer pyrrhonotus

The Sind sparrow, Passer pyrrhonotus, is a small bird of the sparrow family, Passeridae, that bears a close resemblance to the ubiquitous house sparrow. It is distinguished by its slightly smaller size and unique plumage features. The male is adorned with a chestnut stripe behind the eye and a grey crown, while the female exhibits a darker head compared to other sparrows.

Identification Tips

Males of the Sind sparrow can be identified by their short, narrow black bib and a distinctive chestnut eye stripe that does not meet the mantle. They also have a grey crown and nape, with a rufous lower back and rump. Females, on the other hand, have a darker and greyer crown and cheek, and a darker chestnut shoulder. The bill is black in breeding males and pale brown in females and non-breeding males.


The Sind sparrow is typically found in riverine and wetland habitats with thorny scrub and tall grass. It is closely associated with the Indus valley and its tributaries, preferring areas near water.


This species is native to the Indus valley region in South Asia, particularly in Sindh. Its range extends into Pakistan and western India, with some birds dispersing or migrating into western Pakistan and eastern Iran during the non-breeding season.


The Sind sparrow is a social bird, often seen in small groups while feeding and during winter dispersal. It is known to gather in loose colonies for breeding.

Song & Calls

The male Sind sparrow's song includes a series of chirrups mixed with grating notes and short warbles or whistles. Its calls are soft chirping sounds that are less strident and higher pitched than those of the house sparrow.


Nesting occurs from April to September, with most pairs raising two clutches. Nests are untidy globular masses made from grass or other plant matter, situated in the branches of thorny trees. Both sexes participate in nest building and care for the young.

Similar Species

The Sind sparrow is often confused with the house sparrow but can be distinguished by its size and the male's chestnut stripe. The female Dead Sea sparrow is similar but has yellow tinges on the underparts.

Diet and Feeding

Primarily seed-eaters, Sind sparrows forage close to the ground for grass seeds and occasionally insects, especially during the breeding season to feed their young.

Conservation Status

The Sind sparrow is currently assessed as Least Concern on the IUCN Red List, with a fairly common presence and an expanding range within its habitat.

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Sind Sparrows on Birda

A map showing the sighting location
Hemant Kirola
02 Sep 2023 - 6:30am

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