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Reddish overall with a heavily streaked breast, Fox Sparrows are welcome spring arrivals. FORUM NEWS SERVICE/Keith Corliss

In defense of the lowly sparrow

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The sparrows are back. All winter long members of the songbird family, Emberizidae, have been absent from our area, spending the cold non-breeding months farther to the south. Now with the lengthening of days, the 20-plus sparrow species that visit North Dakota at least some part of the year are arriving.

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