Seaside Sparrow

Ammospiza maritima





Code 4


Code 6



Egg Color:

White to pale green with red brown markings

Number of Eggs:

3 - 6

Incubation Days:

12 - 13

Egg Incubator:


Nest Location:

Attached to marsh reeds or set on clump of grass., 9-11 inches to 5 feet above mud but up to 14 feet.

Nest Material:

Dried grass and sedges., Lined with soft finer grasses.


Northern birds migrate



Seaside Sparrow: Medium-sized sparrow (maritimus), with streaked olive-gray upperparts and pale buff underparts with streaks on breast and sides. Head has yellow streak between eye and bill. Bill is long with thick base. Tail is short and pointed. Sexes are similar.

Range and Habitat

Seaside Sparrow: Year round populations are found along the Gulf Coast of Florida west to Texas, and along the Atlantic Coast from Florida north to the Carolinas. Northernmost birds usually move further south in the winter. Fairly common resident in coastal marshes. Accidental vagrant to inland areas.

Breeding and Nesting

Seaside Sparrow: Three to six white to pale green eggs marked with red brown are laid in a nest made of dried grass and sedges, lined with finer grass, and attached to marsh reeds or set on a clump of grass, from 1 to 5 feet above the ground; sometimes higher. Incubation ranges from 12 to 13 days and is carried out by the female.

Foraging and Feeding

Seaside Sparrow: Eats small snails, insects, crustaceans, and seeds. Forages on the ground, gleaning food as it walks upright like a small rail; also wades in shallow water.

Readily Eats

Sunflower Seed, Commercial Mixed Bird Seed


Seaside Sparrow: Song is a harsh, buzzing "oka-chee-weee", reminiscent of a Red-winged Blackbird. Call is a "chip."

Similar Species

Seaside Sparrow: Saltmarsh Sparrow is smaller, paler, and buff overall with dark-streaked underparts, dark crown, and gray nape.


Belly, undertail coverts, chest, flanks, and foreneck.

Back, rump, hindneck, wings, and crown.
The upper front part of a bird.
Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X