Meadow Pipit

Meadow Pipit - Erik Paterson

The Meadow Pipit or Titlark, (Anthus pratensis), is a small passerine bird which breeds in much of the northern half of Europe and Asia. It is migratory over most of its range, wintering in southern Europe, north Africa and southern Asia, but is resident in Ireland, Great Britain, and neighbouring coastal areas of western Europe. However, even here, many birds move to the coast or lowlands in winter.

This is a widespread and often abundant small pipit. It is an undistinguished looking species on the ground, mainly brown above and buff below, with darker streaking on most of its plumage. It has pale pink legs and a thin bill. The call is a weak tsi-tsi. The simple repetitive song is given in a short song flight.

This is a species of uncultivated open habitats, such as pasture and moorland. It is a fairly terrestrial pipit, usually landing on the ground. It is similar to the Tree Pipit, Anthus trivialis, which is slightly larger, less heavily streaked, and has stronger facial markings. The song of the Meadow Pipit accelerates towards the end while that of the Tree Pipit slows down.

The nest is on the ground. The Meadow Pipit's food is primarily insects with some seeds.

This species is one of the hosts of the Common Cuckoo.

In the UK this species is sometimes called a "mippit" by birders.



thumb|300px|left|The Meadow pipit, Anthus pratensis by Richard Claxton -

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