The New Student's Reference Work/Lark

NSRW Prairie Horned Lark.jpg

Lark, the popular name of birds common in Europe, Asia and Africa. There is one species in Australia. The European skylark is the lark of the poets. It sings blithely and rapturously while on the wing. An attempt has been made to introduce it into the United States, but it is very destructive to green crops and for that reason an undesirable addition to our fauna. There are about 100 different species of larks, but only one—the horned lark—lives in the United States. There however are several geographical varieties of this single species. They are about one fifth smaller than the robin, are brownish and sandy above an d whitish below, with a black patch on the breast and under the eye, the tail black. The throat is a clear yellow, a pale yellow line runs over the eye, and the head is surmounted by a pair of sharp horns made of black feathers. They live on the ground, rarely choosing a perch higher than a fence. The nest is built on the ground. They sing while on the wing, soaring high and repeating their song, which is not very attractive, several times before alighting. The one called the shorelark belongs to northeastern North America, but sometimes wanders as far as North Carolina, and is a familiar winter resident in the eastern coast-states. The prairie horned lark is found much farther south, but though once belonging exclusively to the prairie country is now widely distributed. See Meadowlark.