Song sparrows can be found in the Decorah area year-round, although some wintering sparrows could be migrants from colder northern areas. When snow and ice cover the ground, they eat seeds, grains (including corn), and dried fruit. During the summer, they add invertebrates and a wide array of fresh plant food to their diets.
Female song sparrows use grasses, weeds, and bark to build their cup nests, which they line with soft materials, including more grass, rootlets, and hair. They lay one to six eggs per clutch and produce up to seven broods per year. Song sparrows incubate eggs for 12-15 days and young stay in the nest for 9-12 days before fledging.
Although both song sparrows and house sparrows are called ‘sparrows’, song sparrows belong to the Emberizidae, or American sparrows. To learn more, visit Cornell’s website.