This longspur averages buffier brown than the others. In all plumages, the two outer sets of tail feathers show extensive white. The primary projection is quite long, but the primary tips are unevenly spaced. Alternate Male: The underparts and nape are a rich buffy tan. The crown and cheek are blackish, with a bold white supercilium and cheek patch. Upperparts are dark brown with buff streaks, a small white patch on the shoulder, and indistinct whitish wing bars. Female and Basic Male: Upperparts dark brown with buffy steaks and feather edges, and indistinct whitish wing bars. The white shoulder patch is greatly reduced. The head is gray-buff, with a streaked crown, pale eye ring, and dark border around the auriculars (often broken at the back). The underparts are buffy with fine blurry streaks across the breast, and along the sides and flanks. Immatures are nearly identical to adult female, but have paler post-ocular stripe and less defined dark border around the auriculars.
Length: 15 (cm) Wingspan: 25 (cm)
Flight note is a dry rattle, lower pitched at the end. Song is a high sweet warble, with an emphatic ending.
Breeds at the northern edge of the Boreal Forest in tundra and wet meadows. Winters in short grasslands, such as grazed pastures, mowed hayfields, and airports. Uses agricultural stubble fields in migration.
Flocks often hidden in short grass habitats until they are flushed. Flushes somewhat vertically, then often flies several hundred meters before landing.
Forages on the ground for seeds and invertebrates.
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