Singing Bushlark ID

Subject: Singing Bushlark ID
From: Carol Probets <>
Date: Thu, 19 Oct 2000 11:52:05 +1100

Sounds to me like your bird might be a Richard's Pipit, which perform
dipping song-flights like you described with tail elevated, and ending with
a sudden dive to the ground.

The pipit's song is described well by Pizzey: "at each swing, utters high,
quavering 'tzweeer'", whereas I think the bushlark's flight song is more
varied and melodious than your description suggests.

Hope this helps,


On 19/10/00, Steve Clark wrote:
>G'day all
>The Singing Bushlark is not a bird I know well.  In fact I've only seen
>them on
>three occasions (King's Canyon, Broome and Capertee Valley).  In each case the
>birds were sitting on fences singing and allowed close views.
>Yesterday I called in briefly at Lake Fyans (near Stawell in western Victoria)
>and watched a small bird performing a Skylark-type song flight.  Both the
>style and the song were different however.  The flight was a series of short
>loops (like it was on a roller-coaster) and the song was a series of short,
>plaintive cheeps - nothing like the rollicking Skylark.  At the end of the
>flight the bird dropped to the ground in a single motion.
>The bird was of the right colouration for a Songlark/Skylark/Pipit/Bushlark.
>When doing the loopy flight it held it's tail partially erect.  I noticed
>on the sides of the tail.
>Consulted field guides almost convince me that the bird was a Singing Bushlark
>and I am familiar with the Skylarks and Songlarks which behave in similar
>fashion.  However the single-motion drop to the ground is not supposed to be
>characteristic of the Bushlark and no-one mentions the tail being held up.
>Would some of you with more experience with this bird please give an opinion.

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