Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
STATUS: Common; on the Blue List because of overall declines in population.
HABITAT: On the western Great Plains, inhabits mixed short-grass prairie and other areas of predominately low growth, but also areas of taller grasses with scattered shrubs and disturbed grasslands. Also inhabits sagebrush, fenced pastures, cultivated or fallow alfalfa or clover croplands, weedy roadsides, meadows, and areas of relatively barren ground.
SPECIAL HABITAT REQUIREMENTS: Open habitats with relatively short, herbaceous vegetation.
NEST: Builds nest in a depression in the ground, usually well concealed by grasses or other prairie plants, often located near the base of a plant or plant debris.
FOOD: Feeds on the ground, taking primarily insects during the summer, especially grasshoppers. In other seasons, eats seeds of weeds and grasses predominately.
REFERENCES: Ballard in Farrand 1983c, Baumgartner in Bent 1968b, Forbush and May 1955, Johnsgard 1979, Tate and Tate 1982.