Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
STATUS: Uncommon; once abundant, its numbers were reduced by several decades of hunting pressure.
HABITAT: Prefers raised and grassy terrain, sometimes by streams, but avoids marshy areas. Predominately a ground bird, it only occasionally occurs on beaches and along shores in migration, favoring short-grass prairies, burned-over grasslands, cotton fields, recently plowed fields, sun-baked stubble, and barren, recently inundated lands.
SPECIAL HABITAT REQUIREMENTS: Dry, grassy tundra.
NEST: Nests in a shallow cavity in dry, mossy or grassy tundra, sometimes near water or on high and dry banks of black tundra.
FOOD: Forages primarily on insects gleaned from the surface. Eats adult and larval beetles, larvae and pupae of flies, some spiders, and seeds of smartweeds, pondweeds, and spikerushes.
REFERENCES: Bent 1927, Cramp and Simmons 1983, Palmer 1967.