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Hedge Sparrow Prunella modularis

The Hedge Sparrow is also known as the Dunnock or the Hedge Accentor. This tiny bird looks very much like the House Sparrow and is indeed often considered to be a member of the Sparrow family. However it belongs to its own family, which you can tell from the beak. The beak is fragile and sharp, indicating that this is an insect eating bird rather than one feeding on seeds like the Sparrows. There are more differences. Unlike the members of the real Sparrow family the Dunnock doesn't live socially. In other words you normally see one or two of them at the same time. The bird lives very much on the ground and behaves much more quiet than the Sparrows, even though it's not a really shy bird. In winter it might feed on little seeds or fat you put in your garden, but it will never fly upon your feeding table. It rather feeds on little crumbs that other birds pushed off of the table.

This bird belongs to the family of Accentors (Prunellidae). It is very common in our garden and can be seen in Holland all year round. The bird is 5,5" and weighs 20 grams. It lives in woodlands and gardens mostly. It eats insects and seeds. The sexes do not differ from one another. The nests is made from april to june in shrubs and bushes. But if there are no shrubs available, everything else will do: a letterbox, an empty bag, a car, a bucket: you name it and the Hedge Sparrow will use it. The Dunnock lays its four of five eggs twice a year. The eggs are kept warm for some two weeks. After this the young remain in the nest for another two weeks.

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