New York Natural Heritage Program
Seaside Sparrow
Ammodramus maritimus (Wilson, 1811)
Birds

New York State Distribution [-]
In New York, the Seaside Sparrow is almost entirely restricted to salt marsh areas on the south shore of Long Island where it occurs from Southampton west to Jamaica Bay. Within this region the center of abundance is in the bays of Nassau and western Suffolk Counties. Outlying colonies occur on Gardiner's and Fisher's islands and two small marshes on the north shore of Nassau County. Seaside Sparrows occur at a single site in Westchester County on the Long Island Sound and formerly occurred at a single brackish marsh at the southern end of the Hudson River (Greenlaw 1992, Andrle and Carroll 1988). There are a small number of birds reported annually in winter counts on Long Island (Levine 1998). It is unknown where birds breeding in New York spend the winter (Levine 1998).

Global Distribution [-]
The Seaside Sparrow breeds from Massachusetts south along the Atlantic Coast to the St. Johns River in northcentral Florida, and from Tampa Bay on the Gulf Coast of Florida to Corpus Christi, Texas (AOU 1983). Breeding birds have been noted in recent years in New Hampshire, but it is unlikely that populations can become established much further north since the physiography of tidal marshes changes and they become unsuitable in southern Maine (Greenlaw 1992). Throughout its range, Seaside Sparrow populations are separated into demes by areas of unsuitable habitat. A number of subspecies have been described and at least two of these are now extinct. Human habitat alterations have caused many additional gaps in the breeding distribution of this species. The winter range is similar to the breeding range although most northeastern (New Hampshire to New Jersey) breeding birds are migratory and probably winter primarily in the southeastern United States. In addition, wintering birds occur in coastal Florida and the southeast coast of Texas, to the south of current breeding populations (Post and Greenlaw 1994).
Best Places to See
• Gilgo State Park (Suffolk County)
• North shore of Fire Island in Brookhaven (Suffolk County)