Overview

Distribution

Native to North American prairies, chestnut-collared longspurs, migrate annually between breeding and wintering grounds. Breeding grounds are located east of the Rocky Mountains in the Canadian Prairies (from Southeast Alberta to Southwest Manitoba) and Great Plains of the United States (Montana, North Dakota, and South Dakota). Breeding areas are also found in eastern Wyoming and northeast Colorado, as well as in northwest Nebraska and western Minnesota, where populations have been greatly reduced. Chestnut-collared longspurs arrive at breeding grounds from March through May, and depart from mid-September through early-October. These birds winter from October through December in the southwestern United States and northern Mexico, departing from February through April. The typical wintering range extends from eastern Arizona to central Kansas, then south through northwest Texas and northern Mexico.

Biogeographic Regions: nearctic (Native )

  • Hill, D., L. Gould. 1997. Chestnut-collared Longspur. The Birds of North America, 288: 1-20.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Range Description

Calcarius ornatus breeds in the Great Plains (north and central USA) and the Canadian Prairie Provinces (southern central Canada), and winters in south-central and south-western USA and north-central Mexico (Hill and Gould 1997). It has undergone long-term population declines so that it is now rare or extirpated as a breeding species in a number of States formerly occupied. Breeding Bird Survey data record significant declines since 1980 in South Dakota which remains a stronghold of the species. Given that populations already have been drastically reduced in neighbouring Minnesota and Nebraska, South Dakota populations, in particular, should be closely monitored (Hill and Gould 1997). Its decline measured by the Breeding Bird Survey equates to 7.4% per year (53.5% per decade) over 1993-2002, 3.9% per year (32.8% per decade) over 1980-2002, and 2.4% per year (31.6% per decade) over 1966-2002.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

National Distribution

Canada

Origin: Native

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Present

Confidence: Confident

Type of Residency: Breeding

United States

Origin: Native

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Present

Confidence: Confident

Type of Residency: Year-round

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Global Range: (250-20,000 square km (about 100-8000 square miles)) BREEDING: from southern Alberta to southern Manitoba, south east of the Rocky Mountains to northeastern Colorado, western Kansas, northcentral Nebraska, and western Minnesota (Hill and Gould 1997, AOU 1998). NON-BREEDING: California (rare), northern Arizona, eastern New Mexico, eastern Colorado, and central Kansas south to northern Sonora, Chihuahua, Zacatecas, San Luis Potosi, and southern Texas (Hill and Gould 1997, AOU 1998).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Range

Prairies of central North America; > sw US to n Mexico.
  • Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2014. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: Version 6.9. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Physical Description

Morphology

Chestnut-collared longspurs are the smallest of the four species in the genus Calcarius, which also includes Smith's longspurs (Calcarius pictus), McCown's longspurs (Calcarius mccownii), and Lapland longspurs (Calcarius lapponicus). A characteristic of all birds in this genus is a long, slender claw extending from the hind toe. Chestnut-collared longspurs range from 13 to 16.5 cm in length, with a mass of 18 to 25 g. They have long, pointed wings with a span ranging from 25 to 27 cm. Wing and tail measurements in males are significantly longer than in females (81 to 91 mm vs 76 to 85 mm, respectively). A distinct black triangle or fan pattern surrounded by white can be seen on the tail when in flight. Breeding males are distinguished by a deep chestnut hindneck with a black breast and crown, with cheeks and upper throat ranging in color from yellowish buff to white. In wintering males, buff colored feather tips obscure the black and chestnut colors on the head, neck, and breast. Breeding females have been described as relatively plain and sparrow-like, having grayish buff coloration with dusky streaks, and occasionally exhibiting a very dulled resemblance to males. Wintering females appear similar to breeding females but with buff feather tips. Juveniles of both sexes mirror adult females but have heavy streaking on breast, flanks, and crown. Chestnut-collared longspurs have a small, conical beak.

Range mass: 18 to 23 g.

Range length: 13 to 16.5 cm.

Range wingspan: 25 to 27 cm.

Sexual Dimorphism: male larger; sexes colored or patterned differently; male more colorful

Other Physical Features: endothermic ; bilateral symmetry

  • DuBois, A. 1937. Notes on Coloration and Habits of the Chestnut-Collared Longspur. The Condor, 39/3: 104-107. Accessed February 08, 2012 at http://www.jstor.org/stable/1363740 ..
  • Vuilleumier, F. 2009. Birds of North America. London: DK.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Size

Length: 15 cm

Weight: 19 grams

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Type Information

Cotype for Calcarius ornatus
Catalog Number: USNM A6290
Collection: Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Birds
Sex/Stage: Male; Adult
Preparation: Skin: Whole
Collector(s): T. Henry
Locality: Fort Thorn, Mimbres To Rio Grande - L. 32 Degrees, Dona Ana, New Mexico, United States, North America
  • Cotype: Baird. 1858. Rep. Expl. And Surv. R.R. Pac. 9: xxxviii (in list), 431 (in key), 436.
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Birds

Source: National Museum of Natural History Collections

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Cotype for Calcarius ornatus
Catalog Number: USNM A6292
Collection: Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Birds
Sex/Stage: Male; Adult
Preparation: Skin: Whole
Collector(s): A. Heermann
Year Collected: 1854
Locality: New Mexico, United States, North America
  • Cotype: Baird. 1858. Rep. Expl. And Surv. R.R. Pac. 9: xxxviii (in list), 431 (in key), 436.
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Birds

Source: National Museum of Natural History Collections

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Ecology

Habitat

Colorado Plateau Shrublands Habitat

This taxon can be found in the Colorado Plateau shrublands, as one of its North American ecoregions of occurrence. The Plateau is an elevated, northward-tilted saucer landform, characterized by its high elevation and arid to semi-arid climate. Known for the Grand Canyon, it exhibits dramatic topographic relief through the erosive action of high-gradient, swift-flowing rivers that have downcut and incised the plateau. Approximately 90 percent of the plateau is drained by the Colorado River and its tributaries, notably the lower catchment of the Green River.

A pinyon-juniper zone is extensive, dominated by a pygmy forest of Pinyon pine (Pinus edulis) and several species of juniper (Juniperus spp). Between the trees the ground is sparsely covered by grama, other grasses, herbs, and various shrubs, such as Big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata) and Alder-leaf cercocarpus (Cercocarpus montanus).

A montane zone extends over large areas on the high plateaus and mountains, but is much smaller than the pinyon-juniper zone. The montane vegetation varies considerably, from Ponderosa pine in the south to Lodgepole pine and Aspen further north. Northern Arizona contains four distinct Douglas-fir habitat types. The lowest zone has arid grasslands but with many bare areas, as well as xeric shrubs and sagebrush. Several species of cacti and yucca are common at low elevations in the south.

Numerous mammalian species are found within the Colorado Plateau shrublands ecoregion, including the Black-tailed prairie dog (Cynomys ludovicianus); Long-eared chipmunk (Tamias quadrimaculatus); Utah prairie dog (Cynomys parvidens EN); Yellow-bellied marmot (Marmota flaviventris); and the Uinta chipmunk (Tamias umbrinus), a burrowing omnivore.

A large number of birds are seen in the ecoregion, with representative taxa: Chestnut-collared longspur (Calcarius ornatus NT); Greater sage grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus NT); Northern pygmy owl (Glaucidium gnoma); Cactus wren (Campylorhynchus brunneicapillus).

There are various snakes occurring within the Colorado Plateau, including: Black-necked garter snake (Thamnophis cyrtopsis), usually found in riparian zones; Plains Blackhead snake (Tantilla nigriceps); Black-tailed rattlesnake (Crotalus molossus), who seeks inactivity refuge in rock crevices, animal burrows and even woodrat houses. Other reptiles found here include the Common checkered whiptail (Cnemidophorus tesselatus).

There are only a limited number of anuran taxa on the Colorado Plateau; in fact, the comprehensive occcurrence list for the ecoregion is: Red-spotted toad (Anaxyrus punctatus); Canyon treefrog (Hyla arenicolor); Woodhouse's toad (Anaxyrus woodhousii); Couch's spadefoot toad (Scaphiopus couchii); Northern leopard frog (Lithobates pipiens); Plains spadefoot toad (Spea bombifrons); and Southwestern toad (Anaxyrus microscaphus). The Tiger salamander (Ambystoma tigrinum) is the sole salamander found on the Colorado Plateau shrublands.

The Colorado River fish fauna display distinctive adaptive radiations. The Humpback chub (Gila cypha), for example, is a highly specialized minnow that lives in the upper Colorado. It adapted to the water’s fast current and its extremes of temperature and flow rate. Dams and water diversion, however, have created a series of placid, stillwater lakes and side streams, and the Humpback chub may not be able to adapt to these altered conditions. The species, along with other native Colorado River fishes including the Bonytail (Gila elegans), Squawfish (Ptychocheilus lucius), and the Flannelmouth sucker (Catostomus latipinnis), may not survive much further in time.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© C. Michael Hogan & World Wildlife Fund

Supplier: C. Michael Hogan

Trusted

Article rating from 1 person

Average rating: 5.0 of 5

Breeding habitat is typically short/mixed grass prairie (mowed or grazed) with a vegetation height of less than 20 to 30 cm but can also include tall grass prairie, pastures planted with domesticated grasses, or airstrips. Nests have been found to be associated with nearby pats of dried-out, intact cow dung patties, though the reason for this is unknown. Though no preference for native grasses has been reported, nesting in exotic grasses has been reported to significantly reduce reproductive success. During migration, chestnut-collared longspurs can be found in grasslands and cultivated fields. Wintering habitat includes deserts, grasslands, plateaus and cultivated fields with a vegetation height of less than 0.5 m, and often includes watering sources.

Habitat Regions: temperate ; terrestrial

Terrestrial Biomes: desert or dune ; savanna or grassland

Other Habitat Features: agricultural

  • Davis, S. 2005. Nest-Site Selection Patterns and the Influence of Vegetation on Nest Survival of Mixed-Grass Prairie Passerines. The Condor, 107/3: 605-616.
  • Lloyd, J., T. Martin. 2005. Reproductive Success of Chestnut-Collared Longspurs in Native and Exotic Grassland. The Condor, 107/2: 363-374.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
It is a native-prairie specialist (Anstey et al. 1995), its breeding range restricted to short-grass and mixed-grass prairie regions, and its wintering range restricted to dry grasslands and deserts, where it feeds on grains in high density flocks (Hill and Gould 1997). It prefers native grasslands recently disturbed by fire, grazing or mowing, and will avoid nesting in areas protected from grazing or cultivated fields (Maher 1973, Owens and Myres 1973).


Systems
  • Terrestrial
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Comments: BREEDING: Uses level to rolling mixed-grass and shortgrass uplands, and, in drier habitats, moist lowlands (DuBois 1935, Fairfield 1968, Owens and Myers 1973, Stewart 1975, Wiens and Dyer 1975, Kantrud and Kologiski 1982). Prefers open prairie and avoids excessively shrubby areas (Arnold and Higgins 1986). However, scattered shrubs and other low elevated perches such as Canada thistle (CIRSIUM ARVENSE) often are used for singing (Harris 1944, Fairfield 1968, Creighton 1974). Areas with dense litter accumulations are avoided (Renken 1983, Berkey et al. 1993, Anstey et al. 1995).

In order of preference, uses native pastures, followed by other grazed grasslands and hayland (Fairfield 1968, Owens and Myres 1973, Maher 1974, Stewart 1975, Faanes 1983, Anstey et al. 1995, Davis and Duncan 1995). Preferred vegetation height is <20-30 centimeter (Fairfield 1968). Although usually avoided, cultivated fields, fallow fields, stubble, and dense, idle areas may support a small number if vegetation is of suitable height and density (Fairfield 1968, Owens and Myres 1973, Stewart 1975, Anstey et al. 1995). In Nebraska, breeding occurred more frequently on idle shortgrass and mowed mixed-grass prairie than in low meadow zones or pasture (Johnsgard 1980). In North Dakota, densities were higher in cropland than in the tall, dense vegetation provided by idle Conservation Reserve Program fields (Johnson and Igl 1995). Other habitats used include waste and idle areas, such as fence borders and mowed aircraft landing strips (DuBois 1935, Fairfield 1968, Stewart 1975).

Within drier shortgrass habitats, prefer wetter, taller, and more densely vegetated areas than McCown's Longspur (CALCARIUS MCCOWNII) and Horned Lark (EREMOPHILA ALPESTRIS) (DuBois 1937, Strong 1971, Creighton 1974, Kantrud and Kologiski 1982, Wershler et al. 1991). Low, moist areas and wet-meadow zones around wetlands provide suitable habitat in these areas (DuBois 1937, Giezentanner 1970, Stewart 1975). In Saskatchewan, were more abundant on native pasture in good condition than in native pasture in poor condition; thus overgrazing is probably detrimental (Anstey et al. 1995). In Colorado, preferred areas with heterogeneous cover of short and mid-grasses, and were associated with bunchgrasses (Creighton 1974).

In moister, more thickly vegetated mixed-grass habitat, avoid tall, dense vegetation, preferring sparser upland grasslands with more bare ground (Renken 1983, Renken and Dinsmore 1987, Berkey et al. 1993, Johnson and Schwartz 1993, Anstey et al. 1995). NON-BREEDING: Grasslands and deserts with primarily grasses and forbs, vegetation less than 0.5 m. Also cultivated fields and near water sources (Hill and Gould 1997).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Migration

Non-Migrant: No. All populations of this species make significant seasonal migrations.

Locally Migrant: No. No populations of this species make local extended movements (generally less than 200 km) at particular times of the year (e.g., to breeding or wintering grounds, to hibernation sites).

Locally Migrant: Yes. At least some populations of this species make annual migrations of over 200 km.

Flocks migrate north in spring, arrive in breeding areas around mid-April (Terres 1980).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Trophic Strategy

Chestnut-collared longspurs forage for seeds, insects, and spiders directly on the ground or by gleaning from vegetation and pulling ripe seeds from grasses. During breeding season, invertebrates comprise up to 72% of their diet, especially crickets (Gryllidae sp.), grasshoppers (Acrididae sp.), and beetles (Coleoptera sp.). Compared to other passerines, chestnut-collared longspurs feed a wider variety of invertebrates to their young, though grasshoppers make up the greatest proportion by far (>85%). It has been suggested that attempts by humans to reduce grasshopper populations for agricultural purposes through pesticide spraying greatly decreases egg success in this species, though it does not significantly decrease clutch size or nestling survival rate. Seeds, mostly grasses, make up 100% of chestnut-collaed longspurs' diets during the winter.

Animal Foods: insects; terrestrial non-insect arthropods

Plant Foods: seeds, grains, and nuts

Primary Diet: carnivore (Insectivore ); herbivore (Granivore )

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Comments: Seeds and insects.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Associations

The invertebrate-heavy breeding diet of chestnut-collared longspurs may help keep the density of herbivorous insects in check, while their seed-based wintering diet may have important effects on reproductive dynamics of plants. Chestnut-collared longspurs are prey to many species and also serve as hosts to fleas, blowfly larvae, mites, and chewing lice. Brown-headed cowbirds (Molothrus ater) are also known to parasitize the nests of chestnut-collared longspurs.

Ecosystem Impact: disperses seeds

Commensal/Parasitic Species:

  • Wiens, J. 1973. Pattern and Process in Grassland Bird Communities. Ecological Monographs, 43/2: 237-270.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Antipredator mobbing behavior has been observed in chestnut-collared longspurs, usually involving 4 to 8 birds. Females and brooding males will perform distraction displays when flushed from the nest. Nestlings and eggs suffer high levels of predation, which is also the greatest contributor to nest failure. Known predators of chestnut-collared longspurs include Cooper's hawks (Accipiter cooperii), burrowing owls (Athene cunicularia), coyotes (Canis latrans), northern harriers (Circus cyaneus), western rattlesnakes (Crotalus viridis), American crows (Corvus brachyrhynchos), merlins (Falco columbarius), American kestrels (Falco sparverius), loggerhead shrikes (Lanius ludovicianus), striped skunks (Mephitis mephitis), long-tailed weasels (Mustela frenata), deer mice (Peromyscus), pine snakes (Pituophuis melanoleucus), thirteen-lined ground squirrels (Spermophilus tridecemlineatus), badgers (Taxidea taxus), garter snakes (Thamnophis), Richardson's ground squirrels (Urocitellus richardsonii), and red foxes (Vulpes vulpes).

Known Predators:

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Known prey organisms

Calcarius ornatus (chestnut-collard longspur) preys on:
pendler three-awn grass
Coleoptera
Diptera
Hemiptera
Auchenorrhyncha
Sternorrhyncha
Papilionoidea
Orthoptera

Based on studies in:
USA: California, Cabrillo Point (Grassland)

This list may not be complete but is based on published studies.
  • L. D. Harris and L. Paur, A quantitative food web analysis of a shortgrass community, Technical Report No. 154, Grassland Biome. U.S. International Biological Program (1972), from p. 17.
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© SPIRE project

Source: SPIRE

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Population Biology

Global Abundance

2500 - 10,000 individuals

Comments: Density ranged from 0.7 to 1.2 breeding pairs (mean 0.09) per hectare on grazed plots at Matador, Saskatchewan; 0.0 to 0.2 pairs per hectare (mean 0.1) in ungrazed plots (Maher 1973 cited in Hill and Gould 1997). In Alberta ranged from 1.1 to 1.4 breeding pairs per hectare. Wintering flocks in Oklahoma reported to contain up to 166 individuals per hectare (Grzybowski 1982 cited in Hill and Gould 1997).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

General Ecology

Territory sizes for two males in Manitoba were about 0.2 ha and 0.4 ha (Harris 1944). In Saskatchewan, territories were about 0.4 to 0.8 ha, increasing to almost four hectares in marginal habitat (Fairfield 1968). In southeastern Alberta, territories were about 1 ha (Hill and Gould 1997).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Life History and Behavior

Behavior

Communication Channels: visual ; acoustic

Perception Channels: visual ; tactile ; acoustic ; chemical

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Life Expectancy

The record for the longest life of a chestnut-collared longspur in the wild is 4 years.

Range lifespan

Status: wild:
4 (high) years.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Reproduction

Chestnut-collared longspurs are socially monogamous but commonly engage in extra-pair copulation (second brood nests often contain extra-pair young). Female-female aggression may impede social polygyny in males. Males attract females through song and courtship displays involving tail and wing fanning, elevation of the head, erecting feathers on the back of the neck, and a series of head-bowing movements; males may also mimic female copulation posture as part of the courtship display. Females are often pursued in sexual chase, either by a mate or an intruder male. Females respond by flying to males, sometimes holding nesting materials. Copulation is initiated as the female throws her head back, flutters her wings, and lifts her tail. The male then mounts the female to make cloacal contact, though females may resist copulation by sitting on the ground. Social pair bonds last for one breeding season (occasionally through a subsequent season), but it is unknown if pairs remain together during migration and wintering. Pairs spend over 90% of their time within 10 m of each other before and during egg-laying. Agonistic behaviors related to mate defense are seen in both males and females as males chase off intruder males and females chase off intruder females. Female-female fights last much longer than male-male fights and do not desist upon the retreat of one of the parties.

Mating System: monogamous ; polygynandrous (promiscuous) ; cooperative breeder

Most males begin to arrive at the breeding grounds 1 to 2 weeks before the arrival of the first females (females have been noted to be less likely to return to breeding sites; it is unknown whether this is due to to a lower survivorship or less site fidelity). After males establish territory, breeding pairs are formed. Pair copulation begins before the nest is built and continues for the duration of the building process as well as throughout egg-laying. The first brood of the season is generally between early to mid-May, with the second brood initiated 6 to 18 days after the first brood has left the nest; a new nest is built for each breeding attempt. In the event of nest failure, a female can build another nest in 4 to 12 days. As many as 4 clutches may be attempted by a pair within a breeding season after successive nest failures. Nests are constructed from grasses in a hollow (rim flush with the ground) excavated by the female. Typical clutch size is 3 to 5 eggs with an incubation period ranging from 10 to 12.5 days. Time from pipping to hatching is 1 to 1.5 hours; newly hatched young are altricial and covered in buff-gray down. By day 2, young begin to gape for food. By day 4, eyelids separate and young begin peeping very softly. By day 6, feathers break out of sheaths and young begin to respond to visual movement. Nestlings are able to call in response to parents by day 9. Young Chestnut-collared longspurs leave the nest 9 to 14 days after hatching but continue to receive food from parents up to 24 days after hatching, with the majority of fledgling care provided by the male. Age at first breeding is unknown.

Breeding interval: Chestnut-collared longspurs typically produce 2 broods per breeding season, but have been known to produce 3 broods on occasion.

Breeding season: Breeding occurs between late April to mid-May through mid-to-late July, but varies annually and geographically.

Range eggs per season: 3 to 15.

Range time to hatching: 10 to 15 days.

Range fledging age: 9 to 14 days.

Range time to independence: 24 (high) days.

Key Reproductive Features: iteroparous ; seasonal breeding ; gonochoric/gonochoristic/dioecious (sexes separate); sexual ; fertilization ; oviparous

Nests are constructed solely by the female. They do the majority (95.3 %) of brooding and may brood for up to 50% of daylight hours during the first few days after hatching. Though males have been observed brooding, males are typically found perching near the nest during the incubation period and are known to aggressively drive off predators. Both parents contribute to caring for nestlings (shading during extreme heat, distraction display, foraging, and feeding). Parents continue to feed fledglings until about 24 days after hatching or 14 days after leaving the nest, after this time parents begin to ignore or aggressively chase away fledglings that continue to beg. If a subsequent brood is initiated, the female will cease or reduce care of the young and the male will provide the majority of fledgling care. Dead nestlings, eggshells, and fecal sacs are be removed from the nest by either parent, though eggshells and fecal sacs may also be eaten.

Parental Investment: altricial ; male parental care ; female parental care ; pre-fertilization (Provisioning); pre-hatching/birth (Provisioning: Male, Female, Protecting: Male, Female); pre-weaning/fledging (Provisioning: Male, Female, Protecting: Male, Female); pre-independence (Provisioning: Male, Female, Protecting: Male, Female)

  • Hill, D., L. Gould. 1997. Chestnut-collared Longspur. The Birds of North America, 288: 1-20.
  • Lynn, S., J. Wingfield. 2003. Male Chestnut-Collared Longspurs Are Essential for Nestling Survival: A Removal Study. The Condor, 105/1: 154-158.
  • Wyckoff, A. 1983. Male "Incubation" in a Chestnut-Collared Longspur. The Wilson Bulletin,, 95/3: 472.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Arrive on the breeding grounds in late March and early April, with males preceding females by 1-2 weeks (Fairfield 1968, Maher 1973, Johnsgard 1980, O'Grady et al. 1996, Hill and Gould 1997). First clutches are initiated in early to mid-May, and second or replacement clutches may be initiated through late July (DuBois 1935, Fairfield 1968, Maher 1973). Produced two broods per season in Colorado (Strong 1971), and initiation dates of confirmed second clutches in Alberta ranged from early June to mid-July (Hill and Gould 1997). Third broods occur occasionally (Harris 1944, Hill and Gould 1997). Flocking occurs as nesting ends in mid-August, and flocks forage in ditches, dry sloughs, and rough ground outside of the breeding areas (Harris 1944). Fall migration occurs in September and October (Fairfield 1968, Maher 1973, Johnsgard 1980).

Males are philopatric, returning to breeding territories the following year 67 to 85 percent of the time; females showed less fidelity to a breeding area, returning 32 to 43 percent of the time (Hill and Gould 1997).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Barcode data: Calcarius ornatus

The following is a representative barcode sequence, the centroid of all available sequences for this species.


There are 7 barcode sequences available from BOLD and GenBank.

Below is a sequence of the barcode region Cytochrome oxidase subunit 1 (COI or COX1) from a member of the species.

See the BOLD taxonomy browser for more complete information about this specimen and other sequences.

CCTATACTTAATCTTCGGCGCATGAGCCGGAATAGTAGGTACCGCCCTAAGCCTCCTTATTCGAGCAGAACTAGGCCAACCTGGAGCCCTTCTAGGAGACGACCAAGTATATAACGTAGTCGTAACGGCCCATGCTTTCGTAATAATTTTCTTCATAGTTATGCCAATTATAATCGGAGGATTCGGAAACTGACTAGTCCCCCTAATAATTGGAGCCCCAGACATAGCATTCCCGCGAATAAATAACATGAGCTTCTGACTGCTCCCTCCATCTTTCCTTCTTCTCCTAGCATCTTCTACAGTTGAAGCAGGCGTTGGTACAGGTTGAACAGTGTACCCCCCACTGGCCGGTAACCTAGCTCATGCCGGAGCCTCAGTAGACCTAGCAATCTTCTCCCTTCACCTAGCTGGTATCTCCTCAATCCTCGGAGCAATCAACTTCATCACAACAGCAATCAACATAAAACCCCCTGCCCTTTCACAATACCAAACCCCCCTATTTGTTTGATCCGTGCTAATCACCGCAGTCCTGCTGCTCCTATCCCTTCCAGTCCTAGCTGCAGGAATCACAATGCTTCTAACAGACCGAAACCTAAACACTACATTCTTCGACCCAGCCGGAGGAGGAGACCCTGTCCTATACCAACACCTTTTCTGATTCTTTGGCCANNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNN
-- end --

Download FASTA File

Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Barcode of Life Data Systems

Source: Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLD)

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Statistics of barcoding coverage: Calcarius ornatus

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 7
Specimens with Barcodes: 7
Species With Barcodes: 1
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Barcode of Life Data Systems

Source: Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLD)

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Conservation

Conservation Status

The IUCN Red List has assessed chestnut-collared longspurs as Near Threatened. Major threats to this species include the loss of both breeding and wintering habitat to urban development and agriculture, parasitism by brown-headed cowbirds, and high levels of predation by many species. Currently there are no management actions in place regarding this species.

US Migratory Bird Act: no special status

US Federal List: no special status

CITES: no special status

State of Michigan List: no special status

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
NT
Near Threatened

Red List Criteria

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2012

Assessor/s
BirdLife International

Reviewer/s
Butchart, S. & Symes, A.

Contributor/s
Butcher, G., Rosenberg, K. & Wells, J.

Justification
This species appears to have undergone a moderately rapid decline and hence qualifies as Near Threatened.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

National NatureServe Conservation Status

Canada

Rounded National Status Rank: N5B - Secure

United States

Rounded National Status Rank: N5B,N5N : N5B: Secure - Breeding, N5N: Secure - Nonbreeding

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

NatureServe Conservation Status

Rounded Global Status Rank: G5 - Secure

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Population

Population
Rich et al. (2004).


Population Trend
Decreasing
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Global Short Term Trend: Decline of 10-30%

Comments: Some indication of contraction of historic breeding and winter ranges and long-term population declines. No recent breeding records in Kansas and considered rare in Minnesota and Nebraska; scarce south of 30 degrees North during the winter. Short term trend less clear. North American Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) data for 1966-1979 (N = 50 survey routes) are variable and show no consistent pattern. Data for 1980-1996 show no significant population trend survey wide but show significant annual decline in South Dakota (-11.1; P less than 0.01, N = 22 survey routes) and North Dakota (-2.2; P less than 0.09; N = 35 survey routes). South Dakota had highest breeding density during 1966-1979 surveys. BBS may be inappropriate, however, to detect trends because the species moves opportunistically to recently burn, mowed, or grazed areas (Hill and Gould 1997). Christmas Bird Count data (1960-1989) also show sporadic occurrence across winter range.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Threats

Major Threats
As a result of conversion of native prairie to croplands and urban developments it has disappeared from much of its historical breeding range (e.g. in Kansas, Nebraska and Minnesota). The wintering range has also contracted: this is presumed to have resulted from a population decline. Brown-headed cowbirds parasitise this species and there is a high level of predation by native predators (Hill and Gould 1997). It can be vulnerable to disturbance (Hill and Gould 1997).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Degree of Threat: C : Not very threatened throughout its range, communities often provide natural resources that when exploited alter the composition and structure over the short-term, or communities are self-protecting because they are unsuitable for other uses

Comments: HABITAT: Depend on native prairie habitat. Eliminated by cultivation and conversion to urban development. Long term population decline likely to continue as native rangeland is converted to cropland (Hill and Gould 1997). PREDATORS: In Canada, predation was the greatest cause of nest failure; nests usually were depredated during the nestling stage (Maher 1973, O'Grady et al. 1996). In Alberta, 89.5 percent of all nest failures were due to predators (O'Grady et al. 1996 cited in Hill and Gould 1997). In Saskatchewan, 97 and 72 percent of egg and nestling mortality, respectively, were lost to predators. High rate of nest predation may limit population size. Nest predators include: long-tailed weasel (MUSTELA FRENATA), Richardson's ground squirrel (SPERMOPHILUS RICHARDSONII ), thirteen-lined ground squirrel (SPERMOPHILUS TRIDECEMLINEATUS), badger (TAXIDEA TAXUS), striped skunk (MEPHITES MEPHITES), garter snake (THAMNOPHIS spp.), western rattlesnake (CROTALIS VIRIDES), bull snake (PITUOPHIS MELANOLEUCUS), and American crow (CORVUS BRACHYRHYNCHUS). Predators of adults and fledglings include: coyote (CANIS LATRANS), red fox (VULPES VULPES), northern harrier (CIRCUS CYANEUS), loggerhead shrike (LANIUS LUDOVICIANUS), merlin (FALCO COLUMBARIUS), American kestrel (FALCO SPARVERIUS), burrowing owl (ATHENE CUNICULARIA), and Cooper's hawk (ACCIPITER COOPERII; Hill and Gould 1997) INCLEMENT WEATHER: Prolonged rainstorms (more than 1.5 days) accompanied by cool temperatures can also cause significant nest failure (DuBois 1935, Harris 1944). In Alberta, 1.5 percent of nest failures were weather related. In Manitoba, 8.5 percent of chicks were killed by a storm (Harris 1944 cited in Hill and Gould 1997). PESTICIDES: Pesticides (pyrethroid insecticide) shown to reduce hatch success. Seeds treated with fungicides or other chemicals before planting may pose a threat to this seedeater (Hill and Gould 1997). PARASITISM: Infrequently parasitized by brown-headed cowbird (MOLOTHRUS ATER; Friedmann 1963, Fairfield 1968, Hill and Gould 1997). No apparent effect of parasitism on nest success (Davis 1994 cited in Hill and Gould 1997).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
Conservation Actions Underway
It has been the focus of a number of studies on the breeding grounds, but no species-specific management actions are in place.

Conservation Actions Proposed
Continue monitoring the species, if necessary using a methodology more appropriate than the Breeding Bird Survey. Identify key migration stopovers and wintering sites, and threats to these areas. Ascertain winter habitat requirements and preferences. Develop suitable methods and incentives to restore native prairie habitats. Maintenance of native prairie grasslands is essential for this species.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Preserve Selection and Design Considerations: In Saskatchewan, minimum area requirements were about 58 ha (SWCC 1997). In Saskatchewan, nests were parasitized at a frequency of 20 percent; results from a stepwise logistic regression model indicated that 700-1600 hectares would be needed to halve the current parasitism rate (SWCC 1997).

Management Requirements: GRAZING: Throughout their range, prefer grazed areas to ungrazed areas (Felske 1971; Maher 1973; Dale 1983, 1984; Kantrud 1981; Kantrud and Kologiski 1983; Renken 1983), and native pastures to other types of pasture (Owens and Myres 1973, Anstey et al. 1995, Davis and Duncan 1995). Birds in native pastures may tolerate a wider range of grazing intensities than those in tame pastures (Anstey et al. 1995).

Optimal grazing intensity varies according to prairie type. In mixed-grass or wetter prairie areas where grass is too tall or thick, moderate to heavy grazing can effectively improve habitat by providing shorter, sparser vegetation (Ryder 1980, Kantrud and Kologiski 1982, Messmer 1990). In dry, sparse shortgrass prairie, light to moderate grazing is more appropriate, and heavy grazing or overgrazing may be detrimental (Strong 1971, Ryder 1980, Kantrud and Kologiski 1982, Bock et al. 1993, Anstey et al. 1995).

BURNING: In Saskatchewan, abundance declined during the first season after burning, but during the second year postburn abundance increased to a level similar to that on grazed pastures (Maher 1973). In South Dakota, spring burning of mixed-grass habitat provided open areas of short vegetation that was used during the first few months postburn, after which use declined (Huber and Steuter 1984).

MOWING/HAYING: Mowing can improve habitat in mixed-grass areas by decreasing vegetation height and density (Owens and Myres 1973, Stewart 1975). However, grazed areas usually are preferred to mowed areas (Owens and Myres 1973, Kantrud 1981). Periodically hayed fields (every 3 years) were avoided in southcentral Saskatchewan (Dale et al. 1997).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Global Protection: Few to several (1-12) occurrences appropriately protected and managed

Comments: Protected in a variety of land management areas.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Relevance to Humans and Ecosystems

Benefits

There are no known adverse effects of chestnut-collared longspurs on humans.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Their predilection for feeding on grasshoppers, which are known to have deleterious effects on crops, suggests that chestnut-collared longspurs provide some level of benefit to agriculture.

Positive Impacts: controls pest population

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Risks

Stewardship Overview: Protect prairie areas from plowing and cultivation (Owens and Myres 1973, Stewart 1975).

Provide open, grazed native prairie (Owens and Myres 1973, Anstey et al. 1995, Davis and Duncan 1995). Longspurs prefer native pastures to all other habitat types and may tolerate a wider range of grazing intensities in native pastures than in other pastures (Owens and Myres 1973, Anstey et al. 1995, Davis and Duncan 1995).

Avoid managing for idle, dense vegetation, as densities decrease with increased mean vertical density, diversity, and litter depth (Renken 1983, Messmer 1990, Johnson and Igl 1995).

Burning may offer benefits, provided that vegetative regrowth is not too tall or dense (Maher 1973, Berkey et al. 1993).

In mixed-grass areas, mow to improve habitat by decreasing vegetation height and density (Owens and Myres 1973, Stewart 1975). Annual mowing was more beneficial than periodic mowing (once every 3 years) in northern mixed-grass prairie (Dale et al. 1997).

In mixed-grass prairie, graze at moderate to heavy intensity. Graze moister areas to increase diversity and patchiness and reduce tall, thick vegetation (Ryder 1980, Kantrud and Kologiski 1982). Messmer (1990) reported highest densities on pastures grazed using a twice-over rotation system, rather than areas grazed using season-long or short-duration systems.

In shortgrass prairie, graze at light to moderate intensity; avoid overgrazing (Strong 1971, Bock et al. 1993, Anstey et al. 1995).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Wikipedia

Chestnut-collared longspur

The chestnut-collared longspur (Calcarius ornatus) is a small ground-feeding bird from the family Calcariidae which also contains the longspurs.

These birds have a short conical bill, a streaked back and a white tail with a dark tip. In breeding plumage, the male has black underparts, a chestnut nape, a yellow throat and a black crown. Other birds have light brown underparts, a dark crown, brown wings and may have some chestnut on the nape.

This bird breeds in short and mixed grass prairies in central Canada and the north central United States. The female lays 4 or 5 eggs in a grass cup nest in a shallow scrape on the ground. The male sings and flies up to defend his territory. Both parents feed the young birds.

In winter, they migrate in flocks to prairies and open fields in the southern United States and Mexico.

These birds forage on the ground, gathering in flocks in winter. They mainly eat seeds, also eating insects in summer. Young birds are mainly fed insects.

The call is a two-syllabled chee dee.

Conservation[edit]

Like other prairie birds, they have disappeared from some areas due to habitat loss but are still fairly common.

Controlled burns may benefit this species as they feed on low-growing plants that are more easily spotted after a fire.[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ BirdLife International (2012). "Calcarius ornatus". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 26 November 2013. 
  2. ^ Prairies to Pines: News from Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota. (Fall 2010 Update). The Nature Conservancy.
Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-SA 3.0)

Source: Wikipedia

Unreviewed

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Disclaimer

EOL content is automatically assembled from many different content providers. As a result, from time to time you may find pages on EOL that are confusing.

To request an improvement, please leave a comment on the page. Thank you!