Western Meadowlarks are medium-sized blackbirds found across much of the western two-thirds of North America. They live in open areas like prairies and grasslands.
Western Meadowlarks were once considered to be the same species as the Eastern Meadowlark. The close resemblance between the species sometimes means the best way to tell them apart is by song. The Western Meadowlark's song is flute-like, while the Eastern Meadowlark sounds more like a whistle.
Details & Statistics
The Western Meadowlark is listed as Least Concern on the IUCN Red List and was last assessed in 2012 by BirdLife International. This species has an extremely large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). Despite the fact that the population trend appears to be decreasing, the decline is not believed to be sufficiently rapid to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size is extremely large, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.