Spanish Sparrows

To: "'M. Hunter'" <>, <>
Subject: Spanish Sparrows
From: "Dick Jenkin" <>
Date: Sun, 15 Jun 2014 07:22:20 +1000
Hi Michael

We have just come back from Sardinia and there were plenty of Spanish
Sparrows there. I have also seen them in central Turkey. If you look at the
distribution maps they are present across the Mediterranean and North
African area.

How do they get there ? , the short answer is they fly !! :) :)

The Collins Bird Guide to Birds of Britain and Europe states  "Resident or
short-range migrant in the W, mainly migratory in E ; in E Mediterranean in
Spring and Autumn, seen migrating by day in typically dense flocks, which
move in purposeful, billowing low flight and at surprisingly high speed."

They also hybridise with House Sparrow

Dick Jenkin

-----Original Message-----
From: Birding-Aus  On Behalf Of
M. Hunter
Sent: Sunday, 15 June 2014 6:48 AM
Subject: Spanish Sparrows

Hi All, particularly Mediterranean birdos.

We are on a trip to Sicily, birding has been very incidental, and what birds
there are are generally very shy, although Swifts, my all time favourite
European bird, are a till screaming and streaming around the cities in large
numbers, otherwise House Sparrows, European Starlings, domestic pigeons,
Wood Pigeons some doves, Greenfinches and Goldfinches, occasional Buzzards
and Kestrels,  Jackdaws at the ancient temples, the odd Seagull and tern

However, our travels took us to an isolated building called Castello di
Donnafugata in south-eastern Sicily, near Ragusa, and it has been colonised
by large numbers of very noisy Sparrows, which looked extremely similar to
the Spanish Sparrows we once chased up in Northern Spain, large, big bills,
brown crowns, different plumage pattern on the back, sounded like noisy
House Sparrows. Distinctly different from the still common House Sparrows in
Sicilian towns.

 Is there a known population of Spanish Sparrows at Donnafugata, did I see
Spanish sparrows, how did they get there,etc?



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