Montana Audubon

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Eastern MT Breeding Bird Survey Adventures

by Amy Seaman, Associate Conservation Director

You’d think watching grassland birds would be easy, or at least your neck wouldn’t get so tired. And it’s true, I guess, except for the larking. Every buzzy metallic zee zee ze you hear comes out of the bright ether, a deep eye-straining blue that settles in even before noon.

The birds are all “larking”, flittering, floating, and singing aloft only to drop down disappearing like butterflies in the grass. Fortunately patches of white on a Lark Bunting’s wing, or the contrasting black belly of a Chestnut-collared Longspur may catch your eye just enough to hint at who it was.

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