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Photo Submission

Submitted By

Tom Moon

Waterloo, IA, United States

Description

in low light the sparrow looks black, the photo shows more detail then looking at it with naked eye. The sparrow showed up at the feeder mixed in with 50 other sparrows

Category

Other

Species

Dark House Sparrow

Dark House Sparrow

2 replies on “Dark house sparrow”

Kristen Barndt says:

In searching for information on another dark bird we observed at home, I came across this information published in 1880 on a black phase of English sparrow. I thought it would be interesting trivia to go along with these photos.

From JSTOR
ADDITIONAL CASES OF ALBINISM AND MELANISM IN NORTH AMERICAN BIRDS on JSTOR

Bulletin of the Nuttall Ornithological Club
Vol. 5, No. 1 (JANUARY, 1880), pp. 25-30 (6 pages)

Journal article:
ADDITIONAL CASES OF ALBANISM AND MELANISM IN NORTH AMERICAN BIRDS
By Ruthven Dean

[Pg. 30.]
MELANISTIC PHASE.
1. Passer domestica. ENGLISH SPARROW. – In Naumann’s work (Vol. IV, p. 458), he says, “Finally there is still a black variety, Fringilla domestica nigra, which is wholly coal-black or brownish-black.” Three specimens of this dark phase are in the Museum at Munich, Germany (Merrill).

Ava Johnson says:

Hey Tom, I believe that this House Sparrow has a condition known as melanism. Melanism is an increase of black pigments in an animal’s body, resulting in the animal looking darker than normal. He sure is a beauty!
Ava

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