My Bird Blog: A blog about my birding discoveries, bird feeders, birds on my life lists, and all things bird related

Sue's Bird Blog Archives

Horned Larks in Java!

Published January 02, 2013
Tags: Life List Happenings, Horned Lark, Snow Bunting, Lapland Larkspur, American Tree Sparrow

Happy New Year to you!  What was YOUR first bird sighting of 2013?  Mine was a common, Dark-eyed Junco. Today, though, brought a life lister!

I received an email this morning from a new birder friend, Ron H, who told me that he and his wife had seen some Snow Buntings, Horned Larks, and Lapland Larkspurs down near Java, New York yesterday.  The sun seemed to be toying with the idea of coming out today, which could bring some nice photos - so I thought I'd try for these 3 life list additions.

It didn't take me that long to find a small flock near where Ron told me they'd be.  Unfortunately, there weren't any Snow Buntings nor Lapland Larkspurs in the mix, but I was very happy to see some Horned Larks - lifers!

None of the Horned Larks displayed their "horns" during my prolonged views, though, which I was really hoping to see! I did, however, really enjoy their soft, pretty little songs.  They didn't seem too afraid, coming fairly close to my car in their skittish walking/running little pattern. Apparently, these birds don't hop like most other birds...

And did you know the Horned Lark, the only true lark native to North America, is one of the earliest nesters of the year? They sometimes nest as early as February, where they risk losing their brood to later, severe snow storms. And they often raise up to 3 broods in one year - wow!

Watching this bird today was a real treat.  A big thanks to you, Ron!  

After I got home, I noticed 4 American Tree Sparrows at the feeders. They've been very scarce for us this year, so they were a nice treat too!
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Horned Larks! A new life list addition :)
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This looks like a male and female to me.
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American Tree Sparrow - welcome back!
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American Tree Sparrow