Bird of the Week: Eastern Meadowlark
This beautiful singer and cousin to red-winged blackbirds shares its tune across the tops of fields and grasslands. This robin-sized songbird can be identified by a bold “V” of black on its yellow chest, and a brownish backside. Meadowlarks are ground-nesters, and camouflage well into the dirt and grasses. Females construct a cup nest using grasses, stems, and bark all on their own. Male meadowlarks will often have two mates within their territory and are vocal to protect their space from other males. You may spot one perched above the landscape on fence posts, perches or taller grasses and shrubs. Meadowlarks search for food along the ground, eating mainly insects such as crickets and caterpillars during the warmer months, and in winter find seeds and fruits. To learn more about this species and hear their calls, visit https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Eastern_Meadowlark/overview. Listen closely for their repertoire of song versions, often described as flutelike whistling, next time you’re out in the prairie at Indian Springs Metropark. You may even be able to hear them near the aptly named Meadowlark Picnic Area too! Happy birding!