Henslow’s Sparrow breeds locally from Minnesota, southern Ontario, and central New York south to northern Oklahoma, Illinois, and a patch of North Carolina. It once bred throughout New England, but has been largely extirpated there due to habitat loss. This sparrow winters within the United States, migrating as far south as the Gulf Coast states and occurring on the southeastern Atlantic Coast up to North Carolina.
Although males establishing territories sit within binocular range while singing this odd song, they often remain unseen. Henslow’s Sparrows most often “hiccup” from deep within the brushy, grassy habitat the species favors. And they are very persistent singers: Males sometimes sing every few seconds, day and night, around the clock.