Notice for readers: On March 31, Neotropical Birds will be integrated into the new Birds of the World, a powerful research database offering species accounts for every species on earth. Learn more at While Birds of the World is a subscription service, we remain committed to offering this content to Neotropical Birds contributors and to those unable to pay for it through our scholarship program. Stay tuned.

Striped Sparrow Oriturus superciliosus

  • Order: Passeriformes
  • Family: Passerellidae
  • Polytypic: 2 subspecies
  • Authors: Cody Smith and David L. Slager

This boldly patterned, highly distinctive, and large-bodied sparrow is a Mexican endemic and the sole member of its genus. It is confined to highland areas, where Striped Sparrow inhabits open pine woodlands and areas of bunch grass. Obvious due to its habits of forming loose groups and perching in the open, for instance on posts or rocks, Striped Sparrow has a rufous crown set off by a very bold white supercilium, and black mask; the underparts are largely whitish, and the upperparts are a mixture of tawny brown, gray and black. The song comprises a series of metallic chipping and beeping notes, followed by a rattling trill that to some ears resembles the call of a female Brown-headed Cowbird (Molothrus ater).


© Nathan Pieplow

  • Year-round
  • Migration
  • Breeding
  • Non-Breeding

Recommended Citation

Smith, C. and D. L. Slager (2016). Striped Sparrow (Oriturus superciliosus), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA.