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Titlark

brown, tail and white

TITLARK, a small lark-like bird of the family Motacillide, many species of which in habit most parts of the world in every variety of region, some being migratory, others per manent residents. The nest is made upon the ground, or dry grass and stalks, lined with finer plants and hair, and the eggs are four to six. The American titlark (Anthus rubescens) is six and one-half inches long and 11 in wing extent; olive brown above, each feather darkest in the middle; beneath yellowish brown, the sides of the neck spotted longitudinally with dark brown; round eyes and superciliary stripe yellowish; central tail feathers like back, the others blackish brown, the external one mostly white and a white spot at the end of the second; primaries edged with whitish, and the other quills with pale brownish; bill and feet black It is very generally distributed over North America, extending to the Pacific and to Green land, and is accidental in Europe. The flight is exceedingly easy and graceful; it occurs in flocks of tens or hundreds, running fast on the ground, vibrating the tail whenever it stops, not squatting like the larks, but moving the body on the upper joints of the legs. It is

found in the fields, on the prairies, along rivers, and on the seashore; the notes are clear and sharp tweets, the last much prolonged; it breeds in the East only north of the Saint Lawrence River, and especially in the coastal districts of Labrador; but in the Rocky Mountain region spends the summer much farther south, hut at cool elevations. This bird is very similar to the A. obscurus and spinoletta of Europe, though the latter has a longer bill and less slender tarsi and toes, and has no yellowish superciliAry stripe; the outer tail feathers are not white, and the spots are less distinct below. Among the European species the most extensively dis tributed is the meadow titlark or pipit (A. pratensis), which is a favorite field-bird in Great Britain. The tree-pipit or titlark (A. arboreta) is another favorite. Both are kept as cage-birds. Consult general works, and Coues, 'Birds of the Northwest) (Washington 1874).