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Henslow's Sparrow - BirdForum Opus

Photo © by Craig Thayer
Rollins Savanna, Illinois, USA, June 2012
Centronyx henslowii

Ammodramus henslowii


12·1–13·3 cm (4¾-5¼ inches)

  • Large, conical bill
  • Large, flat head
  • Short tail
  • Olive face
  • Buff streaked breast and sides
  • White belly and undertail coverts
  • Narrow, whitish crown stripe
  • Rusty wing coverts
  • Dark and light streaking on back

The sexes are similar
Juvenile plumage similar to adult but has fine streaks confined to sides of breast.


Summer range is central to northern states of the eastern United States. Winters in the southern states from Texas to Florida except on the panhandle. Uncommon, local, and declining in populations.



This is a polytypic species, consisting of two subspecies[1]:

  • C. h. susurrans:
  • C. h. henslowii:


Found in neglected open fields with tall herbaceous vegetation but without much woody growth.


Secretive - often seen only on short flights to cover.


Their summer diet consists almost entirely of insects, particularly grasshoppers and beetles. In winter, they mainly eat seeds.


The song is a flat, odd little noise - hslick


  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, S. M. Billerman, T. A. Fredericks, J. A. Gerbracht, D. Lepage, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2021. The eBird/Clements checklist of Birds of the World: v2021. Downloaded from https://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. DiscoverLife
  3. Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive (retrieved June 2018)

Recommended Citation

External Links

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