Helping the Streaked Horned Lark

OPB’s Earthfix blog recently featured an article on efforts to help the streaked horned lark, a native Oregon bird species that is in in severe decline. With only 2,000 left, the streaked horned lark is a priority species for the Conservation District. The District endeavors to restore habitats of federal and state listed species, including state “sensitive” species and others in decline, as determined by Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife, US Fish and Wildlife Service, National Marine Fisheries Service and other national and regional wildlife authorities, such as Audubon Society and The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation.

This striking bird prefers open habitats such as prairies and beaches, and agricultural fields. Within our district, the streaked horned lark would be found on Sauvie Island and on beaches along the Columbia and Willamette Rivers. We encourage land managers with such habitats to help the lark using the following conservation tips:

  1. Provide open habitat on your land. The birds prefer low stature vegetation and areas bare of trees for nesting.
  2. Avoid management that will disturb the birds during their nesting season, e.g. mowing or plowing.
  3. Avoid the use of pesticides. Nestlings use insects as a food source and the young birds can easily fall prey to poisoning.
For more information on the bird, please visit ODFW’s page on the species.
Photo credit: David Maloney USFWS