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Yellow-spotted Bush Sparrow - BirdForum Opus

Alternative names: Yellow-spotted Petronia; Abyssinian Yellow-throated Sparrow; Sudan Rock-Sparrow; Sudan Petronia; Yellow-spotted Rock-Sparrow

Photo by volker sthamer
Yabelo, Ethiopia, 2010
Gymnoris pyrgita

Petronia pyrgita


Showing rarely seen yellow throat spot
Photo by peterday
Negele, Ethiopia, November 2013

15 - 16cm (6-6¼ in).

  • Unstreaked ashy-grey to ashy-brown above
  • White ring around eye
  • Dark brown tail
  • Whitish chin and throat
  • Indistinct yellow throat spot, often only visible when the bird is calling; may be completely absent
  • Greyish breast
  • Dirty white rest of underparts
  • Pinkish-horn bill

Sexes are similar. Juveniles are browner and have a more conspicuous light buff supercilium.


Patchily distributed in the Sahel south of the Sahara in Africa; in eastern Africa south to northern Tanzania.
Common but local in most of its range.


In the past, this species was placed in genus Petronia.
Yellow-spotted Bush Sparrow was split from Yellow-throated Bush Sparrow and Yellow-throated Sparrow.


Two subspecies recongized[1]:


Dry savanna and dry lowland grassland. Also in cultivation. Occurs up to 1800m.



Feeds on berries of toothbrush tree, seeds and insects. Forages in trees and on the ground.
Often seen in pairs or small flocks, also together with small Weavers.


Breeding season June to August in western part of range, March to April in Kenya. The nest is made of hairs, feathers and other soft material. It's placed in a hole in a tree branch or a sand cliff. Lays 3 - 5 eggs.


A nomadic species.


  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, S. M. Billerman, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2019. The eBird/Clements Checklist of Birds of the World: v2019. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. Del Hoyo, J, A Elliott, and D Christie, eds. 2009. Handbook of the Birds of the World. Volume 14: Bush-shrikes to Old World Sparrows. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions. ISBN 978-8496553507

Recommended Citation

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