Date: 10/8/17 6:08 pm From: Scott Byrd via va-bird <va-bird...> Subject: [Va-bird] Clay-colored Sparrow in King George County
After returning home early this afternoon, I noticed a lot of sparrow activity in my yard. Fortunately my binoculars were in my car because I got an extended, up close view of Clay-colored Sparrow in the Red Maple adjacent to my drive way. My home backs up to a large, grassy field that is heavily inhabited by various sparrow species, so I often see sparrows and definitely know when I am seeing an uncommon species. This bird had an obvious distinctive buffy clay color on back and similar colored eyebrow stripe. It also had a downward curving brown, not black, eyeline. Breast was un-streaked and grayish in color. The bird lacked the eyeline the runs through the eye to the beak of the much more common Chipping Sparrow. It also lacked the much darker brown back and any hint of a rufus-colored crown. This was definitely an unexpected surprise.