House Sparrow, Tiu

Passer domesticus
Bird Songs
House sparrow call

House sparrow chatter calls


New Zealand status: Introduced

Conservation status: Introduced and Naturalised

One of the world’s most successful introduced species, the house sparrow is found all over the world.

Males are smart chestnut-brown, white-and-grey with a distinctive black “bib”. They are difficult to confuse with any other species. Females and young lack the bib and are greyer, with lighter brown dorsal plumage than the male. Their underparts are plain grey, but their backs and wings are variegated several shades of brown and white. The robust conical bill is black in breeding males, otherwise pale pinkish-brown. The eyes are dark brown and legs dull pink.

Females and juveniles can be confused with dunnock, greenfinch or chaffinch.

Find out more about house sparrows

Adult male house sparrow. Credit: Oscar Thomas. Adult female house sparrow. Credit: Oscar Thomas.