Horned Lark

Eremophila alpestris

Order

PASSERIFORMES

Family

Larks (Alaudidae)

Code 4

HOLA

Code 6

EREALP

ITIS

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ILLUSTRATION

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PHOTOS

CONSERVATION STATUS

Least Concern

The Horned Lark has a large range, estimated globally at 10,000,000 square kilometers. Native to The Americas, Europe, and Asia, this bird prefers shrubland, grassland, and marine ecosystems. The global population of this bird is estimated at 140,000,000 individuals and does not show signs of decline that would necessitate inclusion on the IUCN Red List. For this reason, the current evaluation status of the Horned Lark is Least Concern.

IBIRD EXPLORER GENERAL

PHOTO SHARING AND DISCUSSION

BIRD PHOTOGRAPHY

SUMMARY

Overview

Horned Lark: Medium-sized lark with pale or dark brown upperparts and white underparts. Face and throat are pale yellow to white and mask, cap, and ear tufts are black. Tail is dark with white edges. Forages on ground, usually in open fields. Eats seeds, grains, insects and small mollusks.


Range and Habitat

Horned Lark: Breeds throughout Alaska and the Canadian Arctic, coastal regions of Canada, and south throughout most of the U.S. Spends winters from southern Canada southward throughout the U.S. and into northern and central Mexico; also found in Eurasia. Preferred habitats include plains, fields, airports, and beaches.

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SONGS AND CALLS

Voice Text

"pit-wit,wee-pit,pit-wee", "tsee-tete", "zeet"

INTERESTING FACTS

  • The Horned Lark is the only member of the lark family that is native to the new world.
  • These birds return to their birthplace after every migration (a characteristic known as philopatric). Because of this, local populations have adapted to the color of their habitat resulting in 15 distinct subspecies in the West.
  • They are early nesters with nests found in February even in the northern states.
  • A group of larks has many collective nouns, including an "ascension", "chattering", "exaltation", "happiness", and "springul" of larks.

SIMILAR BIRDS

RANGE MAP

CERange Map for Horned Lark

FAMILY DESCRIPTION

TERMINOLOGY

CREDITS

Author

Gary Owen Dick

Artist

Yury Lisyak

HELP ME IDENTIFY A BIRD

BACKYARD BIRDING

BIRDS AND BIRDING

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UnderpartsX

Belly, undertail coverts, chest, flanks, and foreneck.

UpperpartsX
Back, rump, hindneck, wings, and crown.
CapX
The area on top of the head of the bird.
FaceX
The front part of the head consisting of the bill, eyes, cheeks and chin.
BreastX
The upper front part of a bird.
HornsX
Paired contour feathers on top of the head of the bird.

Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X