Java Sparrow: Largest member of the Estrildid family. Gray upperparts and breast, belly is brown-gray to pink, undertail coverts are white. Head is black with large white cheek patch, narrow red eyering, thick, cone-shaped pink bill. Black tail, pink legs, feet. Fast flight on rapidly beating wings.
Range and Habitat
Java Sparrow: Found year round on Kauai, Oahu, Molokai, Maui and Hawaii, common in urban areas. Prefers the grassy areas of parks and fields.
The Java Sparrow is also known as Java Finch, Java Rice Bird, and Paddy Bird.
It is a popular cage bird, and has been introduced in many countries. It is considered a serious agricultural pest of rice.
It was previously classified with other estrildid finches in the old world family of sparrows, Passeridae. In 2008 the estrildid finches were given their own family, Estrildidae.
A group of finches has many collective nouns, including a "charm", "company", and "trembling" of finches.
The Java Sparrow has a very small range, endemic only to a few Indonesian islands and maintaining very small feral populations in Fiji, Malaysia, the Philippines, and the Hawaiian Islands. This bird prefers habitats such as Dry Savannas, Subtropical or Tropical Dry Grasslands and Shrublands, though it is also known to reside in rural gardens and urban areas. The population of the bird has not been fully quantified, but a recent search of 17 known locations turned up only just over 100 birds, suggesting a significant decrease. For this reason, The Java Sparrow has an evaluation level of Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List.