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The sparrows are a family of small passerine birds, Passeridae. They are also known as true sparrows, or Old World sparrows, names used for a genus of the family, Passer, as well. They are distinct from the American sparrows, which although similar in appearance are placed in the family Emberizidae, and from a few other birds sharing their name, such as the Java Sparrow. As eight or more species nest in or near buildings, and the House Sparrow and Eurasian Tree Sparrow in particular inhabit cities in large numbers, sparrows may be the most familiar of all wild birds.[1] They are primarily seed-eaters, though they also consume small insects.
Sparrows are generally social birds, with many species breeding in loose colonies and most species occurring in flocks during the non-breeding season. The Great Sparrow is an exception, breeding in solitary pairs and remaining only in small family groups in the non-breeding season. Most sparrows form large roosting aggregations in the non-breeding seasons that contain only a single species (in contrast to multi-species flocks that might gather for foraging). Sites are chosen for cover and include trees, thick bushes and reed beds. The assemblages can be quite large with up to 10,000 House Sparrows counted in one roost in Egypt.
Sparrows have been kept as pets at many times in history, even though they are not colourful and their songs are unremarkable. They are also difficult to keep, as pet sparrows must be raised by hand as nestlings, requiring considerable supplies of insects to be fed to them. The earliest mentions of pet sparrows are from the Romans. Not all the passeri mentioned, often as pets, in Roman literature were necessarily sparrows, but some clearly describe their appearance and habits.
This sparrow sat on an electric wire and I took its photo...

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Additional Photos by Madhumita Roy (madhumita_roy86) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 256 W: 2 N: 419] (2344)
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