Buntings and New World Sparrows (Emberizidae)

Field Sparrow (Spizella pusilla) - HBW 16, p. 559

French: Bruant des champs German: Klapperammer Spanish: Chingolo Campestre

Taxonomy: Fringilla pusilla A. Wilson, 1810, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA.
Sometimes considered sister to S. wortheni; has been considered conspecific, but more closely resembles S. atrogularis in song and ecology, as well as bill colour. Races intergrade broadly in Great Plains; intermediate populations have been described as separate races, perissura (described from Valentine, Nebraska) and vernonia (Japonica, Texas), but great variability of these intergrading populations makes taxonomic separation both inappropriate and unhelpful; both herein included within arenacea. Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution:

  • arenacea Chadbourne, 1886 - breeds in C USA from SE Montana and North Dakota S through Great Plains to NE Colorado, W Oklahoma and C Texas; non-breeding from Kansas, C Oklahoma, N Arkansas and NW Mississippi S to NE Mexico (to N Coahuila, C Nuevo León and Tamaulipas).
  • pusilla (A. Wilson, 1810) - breeds in SE Canada (S Manitoba, S Ontario and S Quebec) and E USA from C Minnesota and C Michigan E to S Maine, S to E Texas, SE Louisiana, S Mississippi, SE Alabama and SW Georgia, rarely to NC Florida; non-breeding from E Kansas, C Missouri, C Ohio, N West Virginia, Maryland and S Massachusetts S to S Texas, Gulf Coast and C Florida.