grassland

Cattle Egret - You've Got a Friend in Me

Many birds that forage in open country, such as Cattle Egrets, benefit from association with large grazing mammals. The mammals scare up insects as they move, making them more visible to the birds. In the egrets’ native lands in Africa, the birds feed with elephants, rhinos, and Cape buffalos. In... read more »

RELATED

Ring-necked Pheasants in the Wild

The Ring-necked Pheasant is likely the best-known bird in North America that isn’t native to the continent. Indigenous to Asia, Ring-necked Pheasants were introduced to Oregon in 1881. The birds thrived in rural landscapes for many years, but modern industrial farming practices have diminished... read more »

RELATED

A Fascination with Cranes, With George Archibald

George Archibald has devoted his life to the conservation of cranes, including the Whooping Crane pictured here. His inspiration? At the age of eight, George heard a radio broadcast about Whooping Cranes at school. He says, “. . . it was this drama of a male and female crane who’d flown the... read more »

RELATED

Finding Mountain Plovers - How Technology Helped!

In the spring of 2013, I found two rare Mountain Plovers in the White Rock Bay area of Antelope Island State Park in the Great Salt Lake in Utah. And lately, I have been hoping to see them again.The last couple of trips to the island have made me think of how various technologies used for birding... read more »

RELATED
Topics & Themes:  photography

Sharp-tailed Grouse on a Lek

During spring at Lostwood National Wildlife Refuge in North Dakota, male Sharp-tailed Grouse  - like the one pictured here - perform their elaborate mating dances on a matted patch of ground called a lek. They stomp their feet, extend their wings, and zip around the lek. Then, in an instant,... read more »

RELATED
Topics & Themes:  breeding display, science

Sprague's Pipit - The Missouri Skylark

In Rare & Elusive Birds of North America, naturalist William Burt writes about Sprague's Pipit, also known as the Missouri Skylark. "Upward he goes, in bounding spirals: two, three, four, even five-hundred feet above the plain it is supposed; then he weaves about slowly, easily, as if... read more »

RELATED
Topics & Themes:  breeding display, reflection, sound

Central Flyway Stand-out Species: Whooping Crane

Pacific Flyway:Stay tuned!Central Flyway:Whooping CraneMississippi Flyway:Stay tuned!Atlantic Flyway:Wood ThrushEvery Tuesday during the month of December, BirdNote is highlighting beloved birds and places in each of the four North American flyways – the Atlantic, Mississippi, Central and Pacific... read more »

RELATED

The Platte River Crane Plane

Every day between early October and early November, two planes fly over the Platte River in Central Nebraska. The flight crews are searching for endangered Whooping Cranes, like the one pictured here with Sandhill Cranes. If Whooping Cranes are spotted, a ground crew monitors the birds’ behavior... read more »

RELATED

Indigo Bunting - Bird of the Ecotone

Many birds – like this Indigo Bunting – can be found in ecotones, the borders between two habitats. Indigo Buntings breed in the ecotone between forest and meadow. They are common at Muscatatuck National Wildlife Refuge in Indiana, where grassland and forest are interspersed to produce superb... read more »

RELATED
Topics & Themes:  nesting

Palouse Country

The Palouse country in southeastern Washington features rolling hills, fertile soils, and grassland birds like this Western Meadowlark, which nests in native vegetation between wheat fields. Horned Larks are less choosy, nesting in the wheat fields and fledging their broods before harvest time.... read more »

RELATED

Pages