Nelson's sharp-tailed sparrow
- Length: 5? inches
- Large, conical bill
- Large, flat head
- Short tail
- Orange face surrounding gray cheek
- Orange throat
- Gray crown and nape
- Buffy breast and sides with indistinct streaks
- White belly and undertail coverts
- Brown wing coverts
- Dark and light streaking on back
- Sexes similar
- Juvenile plumage (Summer, sometimes Fall) similar to adult but has
buffier underparts with less streaking and browner, not gray, upperparts
- Found in marshes and occasionally fields (migration)
- Until recently, considered conspecific with Saltmarsh Sharp-tailed
The Saltmarsh Sharp-tailed Sparrow is similar to the Nelson's Sharp-tailed
Sparrow but has a white throat separated from the orange face by a dark
streak (uniformly orange in Nelson's) and more streaking on the breast.
LeConte's Sparrow has a white central crown stripe and purplish streaks on
the nape. Juvenile Seaside Sparrow is similar to Juvenile Nelson's but has
a larger bill and a broken supercilium.
Length and wingspan from: Robbins, C.S., Bruun, B., Zim, H.S., (1966). Birds of North America. New York: Western Publishing Company, Inc.