12 April 2011

Window kill: Lark Bunting

Of the creatures inhabiting our freezer, Lark Bunting (Calamospiza melanocorys) was one I didn't anticipate would have been a window kill. Most Lark Buntings are seen in distant flocks, uttering a feeble "what? wheep?" sort of call; this female is far closer than any I'd ever have expected to see. Bird-in-hand is an interesting departure from in-field observation.

A dear neighbor found it at a residence on the west side of town... she brought it to me and we discovered a few things. Lark Buntings have two different shades of down feathers. Gray under the back, black under the belly. The outermost four primaries are nearly black, the rest are dark brown.

Note: state and/or federal permits are required to pick up birds.
Our permits are through Texas A&M; the collection date for this bunting was 1 April, 2011 from NW Marathon, Brewster Co. Texas.

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