SWAMP SPARROW – (Melospiza georgiana)
The breeding Swamp Sparrow has a brown-rusty cap and upper parts with an unstreaked grey breast and belly. Outside the breeding season the cap is brown with a thin grey line in the middle (see photo below). The face is grey and they have a dark band going through the eye. It measures around 14 cm (5 in.) long.
NAME: The English name ‘Sparrow’ derives from Anglo-Saxon ‘Spearwa’, which means ‘flutterer’, and it has been applied to many small birds (Choate).
The swamp sparrow, as the name indicates, inhabits wetlands (fresh or salt water) and its longer legs than other sparrow species allow it to wade into shallow water. This bird will even reach into the water for invertebrates.
The nest is placed in dense vegetation above the water. The swamp sparrow breeds in PEI and is fairly common except in the winter. Most of that bird population breeds in Canada on the eastern half. The bird will over winter in southeastern USA and in Mexico. Its population levels appear stable, but its future will depend on wetland conservation.