Crested Lark

Galerida cristata

القبّرة المتوجة

Status: Abundant

The Crested Lark is in the Alaudidae family in the Passeriformes order. It is 17-19 cm in size and 25-46.5 grams in weight. The Crested Lark is a typical lark and is well known in the area as it can be found on the roadsides and in agricultural fields. The Crested Lark is has a short tail and a long and straight beak. The general coloring is sandy-brown, the upper parts are streaked dark brown and black, the abdomen is white and the chest is white with streaking, and according to its name it has a crest of feathers on its head. In flight, the lark's wide wings with rust colored under wings, and the wide and short rusty tail become apparent. The Crested Lark does not have the white borders on the tail or flight feathers that are characteristic of many other larks. The Crested Lark resembles several other larks such as the Skylark, the Woodlark, and the Short-toed Lark. It can be distinguished by its melodious song, its long crest, its comparatively uniform coloring, and the rusty color of its tail. Its flight is slow, straight, and awkward. The lark spends most of his time moving on the ground, running or walking in the open fields and rocky areas that it prefers. The Crested Lark is a known imitator and its song can be an endless chain of original melodies, whistles and snatches of imitations. The birds sing during flight or from a high view point. The Crested Lark breeds in open places with a good supply of seeds, such as fields and roadsides. The Crested Lark is common throughout Europe, central Asia, and northern Africa, southward to the Sahel. Most of the populations are stable and migrate only short distances. In the last 30 years the European population has decreased notably due to the loss of natural habitat. The situation in other areas is unknown (Birdlife International 2012).

International conservation status: LC

Regional conservation status: LC

Migratory behaviour: Resident breeder

Sites: Beitillu, Umm at-Tut, Wadi Al-Quff nature reserves