White-throated Sparrow

(Zonotrichia albicollis)

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List

LC - Least Concern

White-throated Sparrow


N5B, N5N - Secure Breeding and Nonbreeding

SNRB, SNRN - Unranked Breeding and Nonbreeding


not listed


Common to abundant migrant, common breeder


Breeding: Semi-open coniferous and mixed forests, shrubby forest edges

Migration: Woodlots, wooded parks, riparian brush


6½ to 7½ in length

9 wingspan












Mid-April to late May and late August to early November


New World sparrows were traditionally combined with buntings into the family Emberizidae. Recent phylogenetic analysis (Barker et al. 2013) and mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) analysis (Klicka et al. 2014) found that the Old World buntings should be separated as a sister to New World sparrows. New World sparrows have been separated into a new family, Passerellidae.


April 6, 2012 – First sighting in spring (back yard feeder)



Passeriformes (perching birds)



Passerellidae (New World sparrows)










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Ramona Abrego
  White-throated Sparrow    
MinnesotaSeasons.com Photos
  White-throated Sparrow   White-throated Sparrow
  White-throated Sparrow    




  White-throated Sparrow
Allen Chartier
  White-throated Sparrow  
  White-throated Sparrow
Andy Reago & Chrissy McClarren
  White-throated Sparrow  
  White-throated Sparrow
JMC Nature Photos
  White-throated Sparrow  



Visitor Videos
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Other Videos
  White-throated Sparrow: Whistler of the North
The Music of Nature

Uploaded on Feb 10, 2010

Perhaps of the most beautiful sparrow song of all is that of the White-throated Sparrow, a handsome species that breeds in northern areas where spruce and fir trees abound. The song of the male is simple yet elegant. It is composed of clear, pure whistles. There is usually a noticeable pitch change at the beginning of each song (after the first or second note) and most songs end with two or three triplets—whistles that are composed of three obvious pulses.

Individual males sing only one stereotyped song pattern, and neighboring males may sing noticeably different songs. The cadence of one common song pattern is revealed by two popular memory phrases: My Sweet, Canada, Canada, Canada and Old Sam Peabody, Peabody, Peabody.

The video footage was gathered in the Adirondack Mountains of upstate New York. The setting was an open parkland dotted with patches of Balsam Fir and Black Spruce.

© 2010 Lang Elliott & Bob McGuire
The Music of Nature

  White-throated Sparrow
WIld Bird Video Productions

Uploaded on May 15, 2011

White-throated Sparrow singing from a spruce in Maine.

  White -Throated Sparrow Calls and Sounds - Watch in HD

Published on Oct 19, 2013

Facebook Page


The call of the White throated sparrow -- Oh sweet Canada, Canada, Canada, or old-sam, peabody, Peabody, Peabody-- brings with it such an amicable whistle, that it is no wonder it goes so harmoniously with the peaceful expanse of Canada's boreal woodlands. You could even say, and many do, that the White-Throated sparrow's call has become an anthem for the untouched regions of the boreal wilderness. I couldn't imagine a summer morning/evening's stroll through the forest without hearing the memorable White-throated sparrows song.

  White-throated Sparrow II
WIld Bird Video Productions

Uploaded on Jul 11, 2011

Another video of a white-throated sparrow singing in the Miane forest.

License at http://www.paya.com/videos/135212

  White-throated Sparrow (Emberizidae: Zonotrichia albicollis) Feeding
Carl Barrentine

Uploaded on Oct 13, 2009

Photographed at Grand Forks, North Dakota (12 October 2009)




Visitor Sightings
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Ramona Abrego

Location: Washington County

White-throated Sparrow


Location: st Louis Park MN

Have not actually seen but have heard it (familiar w the call, fromvisits to Canada).

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