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Curious Perching Behavior of English Sparrow

Ernest D. Clabaugh
Publication Information
Journal: 
Condor
Volume: 
29
Issue: 
1 (January-February)
Section: 
From Field and Study
Year: 
1927
Pages: 
81

Curious Perching Behavior of English Sparrow

The concrete sections of the Oakland-Alameda Estuary tubes are being constructed in the dry dock at Hunter's Point in San Francisco. These are circular in cross section and are covered with a layer of waterproofing, and then sheathed with planks.

While walking along beside one of these sections I saw a male English Sparrow (Passer domesticus) alight on the side of the tube, clinging there with his claws and bracing himself with his tail in a manner very similar to a Woodpecker. His tail was spread out like a fan beneath him, and he was pecking into a crack between two boards. I could not find out what he was after, though I am sure there was no food there, as the boards had only been in place a few days and were in a position on the horizontal diameter of the tube, where it would be almost impossible for food to lodge.

Ernest D. Clabaugh

Berkeley, California, October 17, 1926

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