Here are two powerful meadow-singers that are quite similarly marked. This Eastern Meadowlark (left) and a Dickcissel (right) are sharing a tree top to belt out their messages. Both of these birds spend a significant amount of their time vocalizing across the prairie. They both nest on the ground in the prairie grasses.
Here are a few additional shots of the Meadowlark singing in every direction to announce his [apparently] important message! Someone I shared these images with replied, “He must have been very hot.” I guess she thought the bird’s gaping beak suggested that he was panting. This handsome bird was, rather, singing at the very top of his lungs – and nearly constantly. I’m not saying he was, perhaps, also feeling the heat. But, both he and the Dickcissel were vocalizing.
The Meadowlarks, at least here at our place / for me, is difficult to film for a few reasons. First, they nest and feed on the ground. Once the grass begins to grow up in Spring, it’s hard to see them. Second, they seem to have a very large “personal space bubble.” It’s very hard to get close to one without spooking it. Third, they are either on the ground or they are in the tree top singing – neither of which make great photographic opportunities. On occasion, they will use a large hay bale as a platform from which to vocalize, but we don’t usually keep those around after the hay harvest. I feel lucky to have gotten close enough to get these shots of this curiously looking bird.