House sparrows – birds which once marked their presence with sweet chirping sounds are now rarely spotted in urban atmosphere. There was days people woke up to find the sparrows chirping in their backyard. A noisy lot, they took grains right from your hand if you had befriended them.
On World Sparrow Day, experts have cited reduction in urban nesting spaces as the reason behind the disappearing species. Once found in huge numbers across the world, the small bird is slowly making its way to the endangered list.
March 20th is a day designated to celebrate house sparrows. Ever since the threat to their population is growing at an alarming rate, the Nature Forever Society of India in collaboration with the Eco-Sys Action Foundation (France) and numerous other national and international organisations across the world took a step toward taking this international initiative.
Sparrows are actually carnivores (meat-eaters) by nature, but they have slowly changed their eating habits ever since they learned to live close to people. Sparrows primarily eat moths and other small insects, but they can also eat seed, berries and fruit.
Sparrows usually fly at the speed of 24 miles per hour. When needed (in the case of danger), they can accelerate to the speed of 31 miles per hour.
Although sparrows do not belong to the group of water birds, they can swim very fast to escape from the predators.
Sparrows are allegedly monogamous. Recent genetic analysis showed that only small percent of eggs contains DNA of both parents (in other words: both male and female are prone to infidelity).
Sparrows can survive between 4 and 5 years in the wild. Sparrows are very social and they live in colonies called flocks.
House sparrows are non-migratory, but urban flocks traditionally moved to the countryside in the late summer to feed on the ripening grain fields.