Italian sparrow

The Italian sparrow (Passer italiae), also known as the cisalpine sparrow, is a passerine bird of the sparrow family Passeridae, found in Italy and other parts of the Mediterranean region. In appearance, it is intermediate between the house sparrow, and the Spanish sparrow, a species of the Mediterranean and Central Asia closely related to the house sparrow. The Italian sparrow occurs in northern Italy and neighbouring regions, with intermediates with the house sparrow in a very narrow contact zone in the Alps, a slow gradation in appearance from the Italian to Spanish sparrows across central and southern Italy, and more birds of intermediate appearance in Malta, Crete, and other parts of the Mediterranean.

There has been much debate on the origins and taxonomic status of the Italian sparrow, especially given its possible hybrid origin. Some have classified it as a subspecies of house sparrow, a subspecies of the Spanish sparrow, or as a distinct species, a treatment followed if only for convenience by authorities such as the Handbook of the Birds of the World. A DNA analysis by Glenn-Peter Sætre and colleagues published in 2011 indicated an origin of the Italian sparrow through hybridisation between the Spanish and house sparrows, and Sætre and colleagues argued that given its origins and the limited extent of hybridisation, the treatment as a distinct species was supported.

Italian sparrow
Passer italiae 1 (loz)
Male in Tuscany
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Passeriformes
Family: Passeridae
Genus: Passer
Species:
P. italiae
Binomial name
Passer italiae
(Vieillot, 1817)
Synonyms
List
  • Fringilla italiae Vieillot, 1817
  • Fringilla cisalpina Temminck, 1820
  • Pyrgita cisalpina (Temminck, 1820) Gould, 1830
  • Passer domesticus cisalpinus (Temminck, 1820) Schegel, 1844

Description

The Italian sparrow is a small chunky bird, with grey and brown plumage. The sexes differ in their plumage pattern, and slightly in length.[2] The male has a head patterned like that of the Spanish sparrow, with a chestnut crown, nape and sides of head, and white cheeks. The male's upperparts are bright chestnut, and its underparts are pale grey, lacking the black streaking of the Spanish sparrow.[3] The male has a black patch on its throat and chest, known as a bib or badge. This patch, like much of the male's plumage is dull in fresh non-breeding plumage and is brightened by wear and preening.[4] The female is nearly identical to the female house sparrow, but it differs from the female Spanish sparrow in its lack of black streaks on the underparts.[3] Albinism is occasionally recorded.[5]

The Italian sparrow is about the same size as the house sparrow at 14–16 centimetres (5.5–6.3 in) in length.[6] The tail is 5.3–6 centimetres (2.1–2.4 in), the tarsus 18.6–21 millimetres (0.73–0.83 in),[6][7] and wing lengths for males are 7.3–8.2 centimetres (2.9–3.2 in).[3] The Italian sparrow's weight varies seasonally from 30 grams (1.1 oz) in the winter to 26 grams (0.92 oz) in the summer.[8]

The vocalisations of the Italian sparrow are similar to those of both the Spanish sparrow and the house sparrow. Its vocalisations carry better in natural environments than those of the house sparrow. The male gives a chreep call like that of the Spanish sparrow to proclaim nest ownership, and a faster version of this as part of courtship display. Male song patterns grade slowly into those of the Spanish sparrow across southern Italy, but in the area of overlap between the house and Italian sparrows, the two birds sound alike.[9][10]

Taxonomy

The taxonomic status of the Italian sparrow has been a matter of debate.[2][11] It has been variously regarded as a stable hybrid between the house sparrow and Spanish sparrow,[12] or as a subspecies of either the house[13] or Spanish sparrow.[2][14] Many authorities, including the Handbook of the Birds of the World, recognise it as a separate species, if only for convenience.[9][15] Others, including many conservation groups, consider the Italian sparrow a simple hybrid and ignore it.[16] The chromosomes of Italian sparrows are distinct from those of the house sparrow,[15] but mitochondrial DNA suggest a close relation to the house sparrow.[17]

A DNA analysis by Jo Hermansen, Glenn-Peter Sætre, and a group of other scientists from Norway published in Molecular Ecology in 2011 indicates that the Italian sparrow originated as a hybrid between house and Spanish sparrows. It has mitochondrial DNA from both parent species. Additionally, it is now breeding beside the Spanish sparrow without cross-breeding in areas where the species both occur.[11][18] Although it hybridises with the house sparrow in a sparsely populated contact zone in the Alps, the contact zone is characterized by relatively abrupt changes in species-specific male plumage, suggesting that partial reproductive isolation based on plumage may also have developed between these two taxa.[18] As a genetically distinct group that is reproductively isolated from the parental species, it must be recognised as a separate species, according to Hermansen and colleagues.[11][18]

Distribution and habitat

Passer italiae 4 (loz)
Female in Tuscany

The Italian sparrow is found in northern and central Italy, Corsica, and small parts of France, Switzerland, Austria, and Slovenia.[2] Its distribution was described by Italian zoologist Enrico Hillyer Giglioli in 1881 as professing "'Conservative opinions'; for it keeps strictly within our current political frontiers".[19] At the northernmost edge of its range in the southern Alps, there is a narrow hybrid zone about 20–30 km (12–20 mi) wide with the house sparrow.[20] In southern Italy, there is a gradual clinal trend with the Spanish sparrow, with birds increasing in their similarity to the Spanish sparrow in appearance and ecology further south, from around Naples to western Sicily, where birds resemble pure Spanish sparrows.[2][14] However, this trend may be superficial,[21] and the Handbook of the Birds of the World recognises birds from Sicily and Crete as Italian sparrows.[9]

Passer italiae in Crete
Male in Crete

Sardinia is occupied by Spanish sparrows, while sparrows on Malta, Crete, and the adjacent islands are intermediates similar to the Italian sparrow.[2][22][23][24][25] On Malta, sparrows resemble the Spanish sparrow, with urban birds behaving much like the house sparrow, and rural birds like the Spanish sparrow. The situation is complicated by house and Spanish sparrows which winter and migrate on Malta.[26][27][28] A more complex situation occurs in parts of northern Africa, where a highly variable mixed, interbreeding population of house sparrows and Spanish sparrows occurs. This "hybrid swarm" shows a full range of characters from nearly pure house sparrows to nearly pure Spanish sparrows and everything between.[13][22][29][30]

The Italian sparrow is associated with human habitations, inhabiting towns, cities, and agricultural areas. In most cities in Italy, it shares the urban environment with the Eurasian tree sparrow,[14][31][32] and in some parts of Naples, it is replaced entirely by this species.[33][34]

The Italian sparrow's breeding population is believed to comprise 5 to 10 million pairs, 750,000 to 900,000 of which are estimated to live in urban areas. It has a population density of 58 to 160 pairs per square kilometer.[35] Up to the mid-1990s, its population increased steadily, probably due to increased urbanisation.[36] Between 2000 and 2005, the Italian sparrow's population in Italy declined by 27.1 percent, mirroring the declines of the house sparrow throughout Europe. From 1998 to 2008, urban populations declined by about 50 percent. A study of the Italian sparrow's status listed a large number of potential causes for the Italian sparrow's decline, including shortages of insect food, agricultural intensification, and reductions of green areas.[35] The Italian sparrow is among the most common birds in Italian cities, but other species, including the European goldfinch, are more common.[37]

Behaviour

Passer italiae MHNT.ZOO.2010.11.208
Eggs from the collection of the Muséum de Toulouse
Passer flying Pompeii
A fresco at Pompeii depicting an Italian sparrow or a relative

The Italian sparrow's behaviour is similar in many ways to that of the house sparrow. It is a social bird, which feeds mostly on seeds and insects.[5][35]

It is mostly sedentary, but it wanders to some extent outside its breeding season. These wanderings are mostly local, but they may extend into southern France. Similarly, the house sparrow sometimes occurs as a winter visitor in northern Italy.[38][39]

Besides intergrading with the Spanish and house sparrows, the Italian sparrow has been recorded hybridising with the Eurasian tree sparrow.[40] The eggs of the Italian sparrow do not seem to differ from those of the house sparrow.[41][42] Broods may contain two to eight eggs, with an average of about 5.2.[43]

Relationships with humans

In most of its range, the Italian sparrow is an abundant and familiar bird of houses. It has been one of the wild birds most commonly consumed as food in Italy.[44] Portrayals of the Italian sparrow or one of its relatives have been found at Pompeii.[45] Like the house sparrow, the Italian sparrow is considered a biological indicator of pollution.[46]

References

  1. ^ BirdLife International (2017). "Passer italiae". The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. 2017: e.T103819014A119356624. doi:10.2305/IUCN.UK.2017-3.RLTS.T103819014A119356624.en.
  2. ^ a b c d e f Töpfer, Till (2006). "The taxonomic status of the Italian Sparrow – Passer italiae (Vieillot 1817): Speciation by stabilised hybridisation? A critical analysis" (PDF, abstract only). Zootaxa. 1325: 117–145. ISSN 1175-5334.
  3. ^ a b c Summers-Smith 1988, pp. 164–165
  4. ^ Bogliani, G.; Brangi, A. (1990). "Abrasion of the status badge in the male Italian Sparrow Passer italiae". Bird Study. 37 (3): 195–198. doi:10.1080/00063659009477057.
  5. ^ a b Picaglia, L. (1889). "Elenco degli ucceli Modenese (Continuazione)". Atti della Società dei Naturalisti e Matematici di Modena (in Italian). VIII. Retrieved 2010-04-20.
  6. ^ a b Backhouse 1890, pp. 83–84
  7. ^ Cramp & Perrins 1994, p. 319
  8. ^ Fulgione, D.; Rusch, C. E.; Esposito, A.; Milone, M. (1998). "Dynamics of weight, fat and moult in the Italian Sparrow Passer domesticus italiae". Acta Ornithologica. 33: 93–98. Retrieved 2010-04-22.
  9. ^ a b c Summers-Smith, J. Denis (2009). "Family Passeridae (Old World Sparrows)". In del Hoyo, Josep; Elliott, Andrew; Christie, David (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World. Volume 14: Bush-shrikes to Old World Sparrows. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions. ISBN 978-84-96553-50-7.CS1 maint: Uses editors parameter (link)
  10. ^ Fulgione, D.; Esposito, A.; Rusch, C. E.; Milone, M. (December 2000). "Song clinal variability in Passer italiae, a species of probable hybrid origins". Avocetta. 24 (2): 107–112. Retrieved 2010-04-20.
  11. ^ a b c Gill, Victoria. "Italian sparrow joins family as a new species". BBC News. Retrieved 2011-09-19.
  12. ^ Stephan, B. (1986). "Die Evolutionstheorie und der taxonomische Status des Italiensperlings". Mitteilungen aus dem Zoologischen Museum in Berlin (in German). 62.
  13. ^ a b Snow & Perrins 1998, p. 1509
  14. ^ a b c Summers-Smith 1988, pp. 162–163
  15. ^ a b "Pending decisions with comments on their progress" (PDF). AERC TAC. Archived from the original (PDF) on 21 August 2010. Retrieved 2010-08-21.
  16. ^ Massa, Bruno (2006). "Biological significance and conservation of biogeographical bird populations as shown by selected Mediterranean species" (PDF). Avocetta. 30: 5–14. Retrieved 2010-05-03.
  17. ^ Allende, Luis M.; Rubio, Isabel; Ruíz-del-Valle, Valentin; Guillén, Jesus; Martínez-Laso, Jorge; Lowy, Ernesto; Varela, Pilar; Zamora, Jorge; Arnaiz-Villena, Antonio (August 2001). "The Old World sparrows (genus Passer) phylogeography and their relative abundance of nuclear mtDNA pseudogenes" (PDF). Journal of Molecular Evolution. 53 (2): 144–154. CiteSeerX 10.1.1.520.4878. doi:10.1007/s002390010202. PMID 11479685. Archived from the original (PDF) on 21 July 2011.
  18. ^ a b c Hermansen, Jo S.; Sæther, Stein A.; Elgvin, Tore O.; Borge, Thomas; Hjelle, Elin; Sætre, Glenn-Peter (September 2011). "Hybrid speciation in sparrows I: phenotypic intermediacy, genetic admixture and barriers to gene flow". Molecular Ecology. 20 (18): 3812–3822. doi:10.1111/j.1365-294X.2011.05183.x. PMID 21771138.
  19. ^ Giglioli, Henry Hillyer (1881). "Notes on the Avifauna of Italy". The Ibis. 4. 5 (XVIII): 181–222.
  20. ^ Summers-Smith 1988, pp. 122–126
  21. ^ Hermansen, Jo Skeie (2009). On the origin of an avian species by means of natural hybridization. Oslo: Universitetet i Oslo. Retrieved 2010-10-23.
  22. ^ a b Summers-Smith 1992, pp. 22–23
  23. ^ Meinertzhagen, R. (1921). "A Note on the Breeding Birds of Crete". The Ibis. 11. 3.
  24. ^ Despott, G. (2008). "Notes on the Ornithology of Malta". The Ibis. 10. 5 (3): 281–349. doi:10.1111/j.1474-919x.1917.tb00557.x.
  25. ^ Hartert, E. (1919). "Types of Birds in the Tring Museum. B. Types in the General Collection". Novitates Zoologicae. XXVI: 123–178.
  26. ^ Summers-Smith 1988, pp. 35–36
  27. ^ Sultana, Joe (2007). "Ein neues Ereignis: Wandernde Weidensperlinge Passer hispaniolensis in Malta". Ornithologische Mitteilungen (in German). 59 (1): 30–32.
  28. ^ Roberts 1954, pp. 150–152
  29. ^ Summers-Smith 1988, pp. 126, 166
  30. ^ Rothschild, W.; Hartert, E. (1911). "Ornithological Explorations in Algeria". Novitates Zoologicae. 18: 456–550. doi:10.5962/bhl.part.1696.
  31. ^ Giglioli, Henry (1865). "Notes on the Birds observed at Pisa and in its Neighbourhood during the Winter, Spring, and Summer of 1864". The Ibis. New Series. 1: 50–63. doi:10.1111/j.1474-919x.1865.tb05751.x.
  32. ^ Wallis, H. M. (1887). "Notes upon the Northern Limit of the Italian Sparrow (Passer italiae)". The Ibis. 5. 5 (4): 454–455. doi:10.1111/j.1474-919x.1887.tb06627.x.
  33. ^ Summers-Smith 1992, p. 25
  34. ^ Mirabella, P.; Fraissinet, M.; Milone, M. (1996). "Breeding birds and territorial heterogeneity in Naples city (Italy)". Acta Ornithologica. 31 (1): 25–31. Retrieved 2010-04-22.
  35. ^ a b c Dinetti, Marco (2008). "I passeri Passer spp.: da "problematici" a specie di interesse conservazionistico". Avocetta. 32: 61–68. Retrieved 2010-04-20.
  36. ^ Massa, B.; Milone, M.; Groselj, P. (1997). "Italian Sparrow". In Hagemeijer, W. J. M.; Blair, M. J. (eds.). The EBCC Atlas of European Breeding Birds: Their Distribution and Abundance. London: T. & A. D. Poyser. ISBN 978-0-85661-091-2.CS1 maint: Uses editors parameter (link)
  37. ^ Fraissinet, Maurizio; Dinetti, Marco. "Urban Ornithological Atlases in Italy" (PDF). Bird Census News. 20 (2).
  38. ^ Summers-Smith 1963, p. 117
  39. ^ Gustin, Marco; Sorace, Alberto (2002). "Autumn movements of Italian Sparrows Passer italiae in central Italy". Ringing & Migration. 21 (1): 1–4. doi:10.1080/03078698.2002.9674270. Archived from the original on 15 March 2010. Retrieved 2010-04-20.
  40. ^ Gustin, Marco; Sorace, Alberto; Cecere, Jacodo (2003). "Plumage and biometrics of two hybrids Italian sparrow Passer italiae X tree sparrow Passer montanus in central Italy". Alauda. 71 (3): 375–376. ISSN 0002-4619.
  41. ^ Ogilvie-Grant 1912, p. 205
  42. ^ Jourdain 1906, p. 92
  43. ^ Anderson 2006, p. 161
  44. ^ Meiklejohn, M. F. M. (1962). "Wild birds as human food". Proceedings of the Nutrition Society. 21: 80–83. doi:10.1079/PNS19620014. PMID 14472204.
  45. ^ "Garden with colonnade (peristyle)". Pompeii and the Roman Villa: Art and Culture around the Bay of Naples. National Gallery of Art. Retrieved 2010-04-20.
  46. ^ Gragnaniello, S.; Fulgione, D.; Milone, M.; Soppelsa, O.; Cacace, P.; Ferrara, L. (June 2001). "Sparrows as Possible Heavy-Metal Biomonitors of Polluted Environments". Bulletin of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology. 66 (6): 719–726. doi:10.1007/s001280068. PMID 11353373.
Works cited
  • Anderson, Ted R. (2006). Biology of the Ubiquitous House Sparrow: from Genes to Populations. Oxford: Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-530411-4.
  • Backhouse, James (1890). A Handbook of European Birds for the Use of Field Naturalists and Collectors. London: Gurney and Jackson.
  • Cramp, S.; Perrins, C. M., editors (1994). Handbook of the Birds of Europe, the Middle East, and North Africa: The Birds of the Western Palearctic. 8. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-854679-5.CS1 maint: Extra text: authors list (link)
  • Jourdain, Francis C. R. (1906). The Eggs of European Birds. London: R. H. Porter.
  • Ogilvie-Grant, W. R. (1912). Catalogue of the collection of birds' eggs in the British Museum (Natural History). Volume V: Carinatæ (Passeriformes completed). London: Taylor and Francis.
  • Roberts, E. I. (1954). The Birds of Malta. Progress Press.
  • Snow, David; Perrins, Christopher M., editors (1998). The Birds of the Western Palearctic. I–II (Concise ed.). New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-854099-1.CS1 maint: Extra text: authors list (link)
  • Summers-Smith, J. Denis (1963). The House Sparrow. New Naturalist (1st. ed.). London: Collins.
  • Summers-Smith, J. Denis (1988). The Sparrows: a Study of the Genus Passer. illustrated by Robert Gillmor. Calton, Staffs, England: T. & A. D. Poyser. ISBN 978-0-85661-048-6.
  • Summers-Smith, J. Denis (1992). In Search of Sparrows. London: Poyser. ISBN 978-0-85661-073-8.

External links

House sparrow

The house sparrow (Passer domesticus) is a bird of the sparrow family Passeridae, found in most parts of the world. It is a small bird which has a typical length of 16 cm (6.3 in) and a mass of 24–39.5 g (0.85–1.39 oz). Females and young birds are coloured pale brown and grey, and males have brighter black, white, and brown markings. One of about 25 species in the genus Passer, the house sparrow is native to most of Europe, the Mediterranean Basin, and much of Asia. Its intentional or accidental introductions to many regions, including parts of Australasia, Africa, and the Americas, make it the most widely distributed wild bird.

The house sparrow is strongly associated with human habitation, and can live in urban or rural settings. Though found in widely varied habitats and climates, it typically avoids extensive woodlands, grasslands, and deserts away from human development. It feeds mostly on the seeds of grains and weeds, but it is an opportunistic eater and commonly eats insects and many other foods. Its predators include domestic cats, hawks, owls, and many other predatory birds and mammals.

Because of its numbers, ubiquity, and association with human settlements, the house sparrow is culturally prominent. It is extensively, and usually unsuccessfully, persecuted as an agricultural pest. It has also often been kept as a pet, as well as being a food item and a symbol of lust, sexual potency, commonness, and vulgarity. Though it is widespread and abundant, its numbers have declined in some areas. The animal's conservation status is listed as least concern on the IUCN Red List.

List of birds by common name

In this list of birds by common name, a total of 9,722 extant and recently extinct bird species are recognised, belonging to a total of 204 families.

List of birds of Austria

This is a list of the bird species recorded in Austria. The avifauna of Austria include a total of 430 species as of December 2017. Unless otherwise noted, the list is that of the Avifaunistic Commission of BirdLife Austria (Avifaunistische Kommission, AFK). Of them, 101 are accidental and six have been introduced by humans. Eighteen species have not been recorded in the wild since 1950.

This list's taxonomic treatment (designation and sequence of orders, families and species) and nomenclature (English and scientific names) follow the conventions of The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World, 2018 edition.The following tags are used in the status column to define several categories of occurrence; the definitions are those of the AFK.

A: Accidental - species having "either less than 15 records in total or a maximum of 5 records [since 1997] irrespective of the total number of records"

H: Historical - "Recorded in a wild state in Austria only between 1800 and 31 December 1949."

I: Introduced - "Established in Austria as self-sustaining breeding species by man."

List of birds of Corsica

This list of birds of Corsica includes the 323 bird species that have been recorded on the island. Of these 102 breed regularly.Corsica is a French island in the Mediterranean Sea located west of the Italian Peninsula, southeast of the French mainland, and north of the Italian island of Sardinia. Mountains make up two-thirds of the island, forming a single chain. The island has an area of 8,722 km2 (3,368 sq mi) and measures 183 km (114 mi) in length (north to south) and 83 km (52 mi) east to west.The status of each species is based on the annotated list by Jean-Claude Thibault and Gilles Bonaccorsi published in 1999. There are 69 species in the "accidental visitor" category for those species that have been recorded on less than ten occasions.

List of birds of Croatia

This is a list of the bird species recorded in Croatia. The avifauna of Croatia include a total of 396 species, of which five have been introduced by humans, and seventy-two are rare or accidental and two are extirpated or extinct in Croatia and are not included in the species count. Ten species are globally threatened.

This list's taxonomic treatment (designation and sequence of orders, families and species) and nomenclature (common and scientific names) follow the conventions of The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World, 6th edition. The family accounts at the beginning of each heading reflect this taxonomy, as do the species counts found in each family account. Introduced and accidental species are included in the total counts for Croatia.

The following tags have been used to highlight several categories. The commonly occurring native species do not fall into any of these categories.

(A) Accidental - a species that rarely or accidentally occurs in Croatia

(I) Introduced - a species introduced to Croatia as a consequence, direct or indirect, of human actions

List of birds of Europe

In this article, Europe refers to the geographical continent, not the somewhat larger Western Palearctic, which includes parts of the Middle East and north Africa.

There are about 700 species of bird in the area, and in general the avifauna is similar to Asia north of the Himalayas, which shares the same ecozone. There are also many groups shared with North America.

Conversely, many of the Southern Hemisphere groups, including the ancient flightless Struthioniformes (ostrich order), and their relatives the tinamous are not represented at all.

The order follows the IOC World Bird List, which is updated twice a year.

The following tags have been used to highlight several categories. The commonly occurring native species do not fall into any of these categories.

(A) Accidental - a species that rarely or accidentally occurs in Europe

(Ex) Extirpated - a species that is extinct in the wild in Europe

(I) Introduced - a species introduced to Europe as a consequence, direct or indirect, of human actions

List of birds of Italy

This is a list of the bird species recorded in Italy. The avifauna of Italy included a total of 557 species recorded in the wild by early 2018. Of these species, 166 are accidental, 13 have been introduced by humans, and one has been extirpated.

This list's taxonomic treatment (designation and sequence of orders, families and species) and nomenclature (common and scientific names) follow the conventions of The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World, 2018 edition.The following tags have been used to highlight some categories of occurrence. The notes of population status, such as "endangered", apply to the worldwide population, not that only in Italy.

(A) Accidental - a species that rarely or accidentally occurs in Italy

(I) Introduced - a species introduced by humans directly or indirectly to Italy

List of birds of Malta

This is a list of the bird species recorded in Malta. The avifauna of Malta include a total of 384 species, of which 167 are rare or accidental. Malta has a limited range of breeding birds with only 21 regular breeders and about 17 occasional breeders. However, it lies on a major migration route and many species pass through during spring and autumn.

This list's taxonomic treatment (designation and sequence of orders, families and species) and nomenclature (common and scientific names) follow the conventions of The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World, 6th edition. The family accounts at the beginning of each heading reflect this taxonomy, as do the species counts found in each family account. Accidental species are included in the total species count for Malta.

The following tag has been used to highlight accidentals. The commonly occurring native species are untagged. Birds that have been recorded breeding in Malta are also tagged.

(A) Accidental - a species that rarely or accidentally occurs in Malta

(B) Breeding - a species that has been recorded breeding in Malta

List of birds of Metropolitan France

This article is about the birds found in Metropolitan France; that is, the French mainland, adjacent islands, and Corsica. There is also a specific list for the birds of Corsica. For the birds in the French Overseas territories, see: List of birds of French Guiana, List of birds of French Polynesia, List of birds of Guadeloupe, List of birds of Martinique, List of birds of Réunion, and List of birds of Saint Pierre and Miquelon.

This list of birds of Metropolitan France includes a total of 573 species according to oiseaux.net. An additional 22 species have been recorded by Bird Checklists of the World by early 2018. Of the 595 species listed here, 220 are accidental and 11 have been introduced by humans. One is endemic to France and one is extinct.

This list's taxonomic treatment (designation and sequence of orders, families and species) and nomenclature (English and scientific names) follow the conventions of The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World, 2018 edition. French names, where present, are from oiseaux.net.

The following tags have been used to highlight some categories of occurrence; the tags are from Bird Checklists of the World.

(A) Accidental - a species that rarely or accidentally occurs in France

(I) Introduced - a species introduced to France as a consequence, direct or indirect, of human actions, and have become established

List of birds of San Marino

This is a list of the bird species recorded in San Marino. The avifauna of San Marino include a total of 96 species, none of which are introduced or endemic.

This list's taxonomic treatment (designation and sequence of orders, families and species) and nomenclature (common and scientific names) follow the conventions of the Association of European Rarities Committees.

List of birds of Slovenia

This is a list of the bird species recorded in Slovenia. The avifauna of Slovenia include a total of 376 species, of which four have been introduced by humans and five are rare or accidental. Eleven species are globally threatened.

This list's taxonomic treatment (designation and sequence of orders, families and species) and nomenclature (common and scientific names) follow the conventions of The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World, 6th edition. The family accounts at the beginning of each heading reflect this taxonomy, as do the species counts found in each family account. Introduced and accidental species are included in the total counts for Slovenia.

The following tags have been used to highlight several categories. The commonly occurring native species do not fall into any of these categories.

(A) Accidental - a species that rarely or accidentally occurs in Slovenia

(I) Introduced - a species introduced to Slovenia as a consequence, direct or indirect, of human actions

List of birds of Spain

This is a list of the bird species recorded in Spain. The avifauna of Spain included a total of 586 species recorded in the wild by 2012 according to Sociedad Española de Ornitología (SEO/BirdLife). An additional 72 species have been recorded by Bird Checklists of the World by early 2018. Of the 658 species listed here, 305 are accidental and 23 have been introduced by humans. Eight are endemic to Spanish islands, two have been extirpated, and one of the endemic species is extinct.

This list's taxonomic treatment (designation and sequence of orders, families and species) and nomenclature (common and scientific names) follow the conventions of The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World, 2018 edition.The following tags have been used to highlight some categories of occurrence. The (A), (E - xxx), and (I) tags are from Bird Checklists of the World. The notes of population status such as "endangered" apply to the world population and are also from Bird Checklists of the World.

(A) Accidental - a species that rarely or accidentally occurs in Spain

(E - xxx) Endemic - a species found only in Spain, with the location appended

(I) Introduced - a species introduced to Spain as a consequence, direct or indirect, of human actions

(D) Category D - species for which there are reasonable doubts as to their wild origin per SEO/Birdlife.

List of birds of Switzerland

This is a list of the bird species recorded in Switzerland. The avifauna of Switzerland include a total of 422 species as of 2018 according to the Swiss Ornithological Institute (Schweizerische Vogelwarte). Of them, 40 are considered irregular and 69 are considered accidental as defined below. Six have been introduced by humans.

This list's taxonomic treatment (designation and sequence of orders, families and species) and nomenclature (common and scientific names) follow the conventions of The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World, 2018 edition.The following categories and statuses of occurrence are used by the Swiss Ornithological Institute. Species without letter tags are in Category A ("recorded in an apparently natural state at least once since 1 January 1950") and those without number tags are Status 1 ("recorded in at least 9 years out of 10 between 2005 and 2014").

(B) Category B - "Species that would otherwise be in category A but have been recorded only between 1800 and 1949"

(C) Category C - "Species...introduced by man, either deliberately or accidentally, [and] have established breeding populations"

(D) Category D - Species for which "there is reasonable doubt that they have ever occurred in a natural state"

(2) Status 2, irregular - "species recorded more than 10 times and in more than 5 years between 1965 and 2014 but in fewer than 9 years out of 10 between 2005 and 2014"

(3) Status 3, accidental - "species recorded 1–10 times or in 1–5 years between 1965 and 2014, or for the first time after 2014"

(4) Status 4 - "Species recorded at least once but not since 1965"

List of national birds

This is a list of national birds. Most species in the list are officially designated. Some species hold only an "unofficial" status.

Passer

Passer is a genus of sparrows, also known as the true sparrows. The genus includes the house sparrow and the Eurasian tree sparrow, some of the most common birds in the world. They are small birds with thick bills for eating seeds, and are mostly coloured grey or brown. Native to the Old World, some species have been introduced throughout the world.

Spanish sparrow

The Spanish sparrow or willow sparrow (Passer hispaniolensis) is a passerine bird of the sparrow family Passeridae. It is found in the Mediterranean region and south-west and central Asia. It is very similar to the closely related house sparrow, and the two species show their close relation in a "biological mix-up" of hybridisation in the Mediterranean region, which complicates the taxonomy of this species.

Sparrow

Sparrows are a family of small passerine birds. They are also known as true sparrows, or Old World sparrows, names also used for a particular genus of the family, Passer. They are distinct from both the American sparrows, in the family Passerellidae, and from a few other birds sharing their name, such as the Java sparrow of the family Estrildidae. Many species nest on buildings and the house and Eurasian tree sparrows, in particular, inhabit cities in large numbers, so sparrows are among the most familiar of all wild birds. They are primarily seed-eaters, though they also consume small insects. Some species scavenge for food around cities and, like gulls or rock doves will happily eat virtually anything in small quantities.

Wilhelm Meise

Wilhelm Meise (September 12, 1901 – August 24, 2002) was a German ornithologist. He studied at the University of Berlin from 1924–1928, where he did his Ph.D. dissertation on the distribution of the carrion crow and the hooded crow, and hybridization between them under the supervision of Professor Erwin Stresemann, (1889–1972). . He also analysed taxonomic and historic relationships between the house sparrow and the Spanish sparrow in particular the status of the "Italian sparrow". He was curator of vertebrates at the Museum of Natural History in Dresden from 1929 until World War II.

Meise produced the first review of bird species new to science in 1934 at the eighth International Ornithological Congress (IOC), followed by an update at the ninth IOC in 1938. He spent three years in a prison camp in Siberia after the war, and joined the Berlin's Natural History Museum in 1948. In 1951, he was appointed curator of ornithology at the Museum of Natural History in Hamburg and professor at the University of Hamburg.During the 1950s, Meise was the President of the Jordsand Club for the Protection of Seabirds at a time when such endeavours were at an early stage. He undertook an expedition to Angola in 1955 and, during the following years, published several papers on geographical variation, speciation, and evolution of African birds.

Meise produced 47 parts of Max Schönwetter's handbook Handbuch der Oologie between 1960 and 1992, following Schönwetter's death in 1960. The work consists of 3666 pages and presents in detail all species and subspecies whose eggs are known. According to Meise, there are 30000 - 35000 sub-species of birds, and the eggs of only half of these are known to science.Meise’s 170 publications dealt mainly with birds, but occasionally with the taxonomy of scorpions, spiders, lizards, snakes, and molluscs. He retired in 1972, and died aged 101 in 2002.

Sparrows (family: Passeridae)
Genus
Hypocryptadius
Passer
Carpospiza
Petronia
Gymnoris
Montifringilla
Onychostruthus
Pyrgilauda

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