World Sparrow Day: Interesting facts about these cute birds
March 20 is observed as World Sparrow Day every year to spread awareness about the protection of these endangered birdies. It is an initiative by the Nature Forever Society of India, in association with the Eco-Sys Action Foundation of France and multiple other communities around the globe. To commemorate this thoughtful occasion, let's 'chitter' about these five interesting facts about sparrows.
Why does this story matter?
- Sparrows are known to live in close contact with human civilization, which is why they are hardly found in forests or deserts like other birds.
- However, owing to rapid urbanization, their numbers have shockingly dropped over the last two decades. Once common, today one can hardly spot them in cities.
- Their species around the world are getting endangered annually.
You can easily attract a sparrow
Although sparrows are swift, they are very easy to attract to your yard. You can do so by placing feeders or by phishing them. Yes, these adorable birdies are very responsive to phishing i.e. when you imitate their chirping sound. However, that comes with a lot of practice. As for bird feeders, fill them with grains and seeds to get their attention.
Cigarettes are among the most important elements of their nest
Ever seen a sparrow flying with a cigarette in its beak? Well, it's not smoking but making its nest with it! It is known that these little birds use cigarette butts to protect their nest; the nicotine present in them comes in handy to chase away parasites. Additionally, unsmoked cigarette butts work better for them than smoked ones.
These little creatures can even swim
You read that right! Although house sparrows are not water birds, they can still swim in deep waters, especially when they are trying to escape predators. Sometimes they also swim underwater to commute from one place to another. This mind-boggling fact came to light when they were caught in a water dish trap while diving deep into the water.
They are capable of changing their tunes
Every bird species has a set sound, tune, and tone. However, the same is not the case with sparrows. Many researchers around the world have revealed that these avian beings can change their tunes, which makes them among the rarest creatures capable of doing so. They also discovered that the white-throated sparrows of Canada are changing their songs from three notes to two notes!
Their wings say a lot about them
Sparrows use their wings not only for flying but also for communicating and expressing their emotions. For instance, these birds show aggression by waving their wings, which was once mistaken as a gesture of greeting among the species by scientists. They usually fly at a speed of 40 km/h, but when in danger they pace up to almost 50 km/h.