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Pest Birds: House Sparrow
The house sparrow is distributed throughout North America and inhabits both rural and urban areas.
These small birds only stand about 5 or 6 inches high and weigh around an ounce.
They are a dull brownish color and the males have black patches on their throats and chests.
A breeding pair averages 20 offspring a year.
Sparrows average 3 broods of 4-6 eggs per season. The eggs hatch in about 11 days with fledglings leaving the nest in around 15 days.
House sparrows are elaborate nest builders. They often nest behind shutters, in overhangs, rafters, or on drain pipes.
Sparrows will sometimes nest in trees or other exposed areas if more suitable options are not available.
Sparrow nests are usually constructed from sticks and lined with softer materials such as string, grass, flexible plastic and similar items.
Sparrows are flocking birds that will roost in large numbers and create a nuisance with their noisy behavior.
Their diet consists of seeds, grains, fruits and they have become quite fond of human table scraps.
House Sparrow Damage
House sparrows create health problems in mall food courts when they hop table to table in search of food.
They also create problems in food manufacturing and processing plants due to their nesting and feeding behavior.
Droppings from sparrows like other birds can cause health problems. Uric acid in feces can cause damage to masonry, metal and machinery.
Sparrows are intelligent birds and regularly gain access as trucks and other equipment move through open doors.
Nests often clog pipes and drains and cause water damage. Nesting in machinery can cause electrical problems, fires or interfere with proper operation.
Sparrows create a nuisance in retail stores and warehouses by setting off burglar alarms.