Eastern Meadowlark

Sturnella magna

Order

PASSERIFORMES

Family

Blackbirds and Orioles (Icteridae)

Code 4

EAME

Code 6

STUMAG

ITIS

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ILLUSTRATION

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PHOTOS

CONSERVATION STATUS

Least Concern

The Eastern Meadowlark has a large range, estimated globally at 7,300,000 square kilometers. It is native to the nations of North America as well as Central America and parts of South America and prefers shrubland and grassland ecosystems, though it has been known to reside in rural and pastureland areas. The global population of this bird is estimated at 10,000,000 individuals and it does not appear to meet population decline criteria that would necessitate inclusion on the IUCN Red List. The current evaluation status of the Eastern Meadowlark is Least Concern.

IBIRD EXPLORER GENERAL

PHOTO SHARING AND DISCUSSION

BIRD PHOTOGRAPHY

SUMMARY

Overview

Eastern Meadowlark: Short ground-dwelling bird with buff- and black-streaked brown upperparts. Head has black-and-white striped crown, white face, black eyestripe and a pointed bill. Throat to belly is yellow, broad black V on breast. Brown tail has white edges and undertail coverts.


Range and Habitat

Eastern Meadowlark: Breeds from southeastern Canada through eastern U.S. west to Arizona; resident in the Bahamas and Mexico. Spends winters mostly within breeding range. Preferred habitats include pastures, meadows, grassy fields, prairies, open country, and country roadsides. Often seen singing from fence posts or utility wires.

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SONGS AND CALLS

Voice Text

"see-you-see-yer", "spring is here"

INTERESTING FACTS

  • A male Eastern Meadowlark typically has two mates at a time, and on rare occasion, three.
  • The scientific name Sturnella magna is Latin for, rather confusingly, "large little starling", the generic name having being given due to the meadowlarks' behavior being similar to starlings.
  • Up to 17 subspecies are recognized by taxonomists.
  • A group of meadowlarks are collectively known as a "pod" of meadowlarks.

SIMILAR BIRDS

RANGE MAP

CERange Map for Eastern Meadowlark

FAMILY DESCRIPTION

TERMINOLOGY

CREDITS

Author

Gary Owen Dick

Artist

Irina Rud-Volga

HELP ME IDENTIFY A BIRD

BACKYARD BIRDING

BIRDS AND BIRDING

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Undertail covertsX
Small feathers that cover the areas where the retrices (tail feathers) attach to the rump.
UpperpartsX
Back, rump, hindneck, wings, and crown.
BellyX
The ventral part of the bird, or the area between the flanks on each side and the crissum and breast. Flight muscles are located between the belly and the breast.
BreastX
The upper front part of a bird.
CrownX
The crown is the top part of the birds head.
FaceX
The front part of the head consisting of the bill, eyes, cheeks and chin.
Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X