Larks: What You Should Know

Larks are small songbirds. Around the world there are about 90 species, in Europe, there are eleven species. The best-known are the skylark, woodlark, crested lark, and short-toed lark. Some of these lark species spend the whole year in the same place. So they are sedentary. Others move to Spain and Portugal, and still others to Africa. So they are migratory birds.

The special thing about the larks is their song. Again and again, poets and musicians have written about it or imitated their music to the singing of the larks. They can climb steeply and then spiral down, always singing.

Larks build their nests on the ground. They need some land that no farmer is currently working on and that has not been modified by humans. There they dig a small pit and pad it out. Because there are fewer and fewer such places, fewer and fewer larks are taking it for some species. Some farmers leave a piece of land in the middle of a field untouched for the larks. This is called a “lark window”.

Female larks lay eggs once or twice a year, about two to six each time. That depends on the lark species. Usually, only the female incubates, which lasts about two weeks. Both parents then feed their young together. After a good week, the young fly out.

The larks are not picky about their food: they eat caterpillars, small beetles, and ants, but also spiders, and snails. But seeds are also part of their diet, as are buds and very young grasses.

Larks are mostly brownish. They are therefore well adapted to the color of the earth. They only have their camouflage color to protect them from predators. Nevertheless, there are fewer and fewer lark species. This is not because of the enemies but because they are finding fewer and fewer suitable places for their nests.

Mary Allen

Written by Mary Allen

Hello, I'm Mary! I've cared for many pet species including dogs, cats, guinea pigs, fish, and bearded dragons. I also have ten pets of my own currently. I've written many topics in this space including how-tos, informational articles, care guides, breed guides, and more.

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