Horned Lark

News of the seeds in my bird-feeder must have traveled far and wide in the avian kingdom. I say this because yesterday I looked out the window and saw a most unusual bird on the fence. I noticed the passerine shape, light chin, and black chest band, which, to me, formed a distinctive pattern. I wanted to know what sort of bird I was looking at. I had never seen it before.

So this morning, I did my homework, and what did I discover? The Horned Lark is visiting my neighborhood! These birds prefer barren ground and short grass habitats (check – though not normally well populated areas, I think, but bare agricultural fields are not far from here), foraging for seeds (check – seeds from the feeder have certainly been spilled on the ground all around), and, importantly, the horns are not always visible (I did not see these – check). Pictures online suggest that these birds may have either white or yellow chins, and the chin of the one I saw yesterday seemed to be more white, less yellow.

Be that as it may, I found this picture as a representative of the Horned Lark — I love the facial expression of the bird!



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