Alauda is a genus of larks found across much of Europe, Asia and in the mountains of north Africa, and one of the species (the Raso lark) endemic to the islet of Raso in the Cape Verde Islands. Further, at least two additional species are known from the fossil record. The current genus name is from Latin alauda, "lark". Pliny the Elder thought the word was originally of Celtic origin.
The genus Alauda was introduced by the Swedish naturalist Carl Linnaeus in 1758 in the tenth edition of his Systema Naturae. The type species was subsequently designated as the Eurasian skylark.
The genus Alauda has four extant and at least two extinct species. Formerly, many other species have also been considered to belong to the genus.
The genus contains four species:
|Image||Scientific name||Common Name||Distribution|
|Alauda leucoptera||White-winged lark||southern Ukraine through Kazakhstan to south-central Russia|
|Alauda razae||Raso lark||Raso islet in the Cape Verde Islands|
|Alauda gulgula||Oriental skylark||southern, central and eastern Asia|
|Alauda arvensis||Eurasian skylark||across Europe and Asia|
Previously, some authorities also classified the following species (or subspecies) as species within the genus Alauda:
1312 Vassar, provisional designation 1933 OT, is a carbonaceous Alauda asteroid from the outer region of the asteroid belt, approximately 30 kilometers in diameter. It was discovered on 27 July 1933, by Belgian–American astronomer George Van Biesbroeck at Yerkes Observatory in Wisconsin, United States. The asteroid was named for the American Vassar College.702 Alauda
702 Alauda ( ə-LAW-də), provisional designation 1910 KQ, is a carbonaceous asteroid and binary system from the outer asteroid belt, approximately 190 kilometers in diameter. It is the parent body of the Alauda family. Discovered in 1910 by German astronomer Joseph Helffrich at Heidelberg Observatory, it was named after the lark (alauda). Its small moon, named Pichi üñëm, was discovered in 2007.Albatros L 68
The Albatros L 68 Alauda was a two-seat German trainer aircraft of the 1920s. It was a single-engine biplane of conventional configuration that seated the pilot and instructor in tandem, open cockpits. The wings were of unequal span and had a pronounced stagger.Bimaculated lark
The bimaculated lark (Melanocorypha bimaculata) breeds in warm temperate countries eastwards from Turkey into central Asia. It is the eastern counterpart of its relative, the calandra lark.Black lark
The black lark (Melanocorypha yeltoniensis) is a species of lark in the family Alaudidae found in south-eastern Russia and Kazakhstan.Botha's lark
Botha's lark (Spizocorys fringillaris) is a species of lark in the family Alaudidae.
It is endemic to South Africa. Its natural habitats are subtropical or tropical high-altitude grassland and pastureland. It is threatened by habitat loss.Cape clapper lark
The Cape clapper lark (Mirafra apiata) is a small passerine bird which breeds in southern Africa. It derives its name from the wing clapping which forms part of the display flight. The Cape clapper lark is a species of open grassland and savannah, also inhabiting karoo, fynbos and fallow agricultural land.Crested lark
The crested lark (Galerida cristata) is a species of lark distinguished from the other 81 species of lark by the crest of feathers that rise up in territorial or courtship displays and when singing. Common to mainland Europe, the birds can also be found in northern Africa and in parts of western Asia and China. It is a non-migratory bird, but can occasionally be found as a vagrant in Great Britain.Dune lark
The dune lark (Calendulauda erythrochlamys) is a species of lark in the family Alaudidae. It is endemic to Namibia where its natural habitat is subtropical or tropical dry lowland grassland.Dupont's lark
Dupont's lark (Chersophilus duponti) is a species of lark in the family Alaudidae of the monotypic genus Chersophilus. It is found in northern Africa and Spain.Eastern meadowlark
The eastern meadowlark (Sturnella magna) is a medium-sized icterid bird, very similar in appearance to the western meadowlark. It occurs from eastern North America to South America, where it is also most widespread in the east.Eurasian skylark
The Eurasian skylark (Alauda arvensis) is a passerine bird in the lark family Alaudidae. It is a wide-spread species found across Europe and Asia with introduced populations in New Zealand, Australia and on the Hawaiian Islands. It is a bird of open farmland and heath, known for the song of the male, which is delivered in hovering flight from heights of 50 to 100 metres (160 to 330 ft). The sexes are alike. It is streaked greyish-brown above and on the breast and has a buff-white belly.
The female Eurasian skylark builds an open nest in a shallow depression on open ground well away from trees, bushes and hedges. She lays three to five eggs which she incubates for around 11 days. The chicks are fed by both parents but leave the nest after eight to ten days, well before they can fly. They scatter and hide in the vegetation but continue to be fed by the parents until they can fly at 18 to 20 days of age. Nests are subject to high predation rates by larger birds and small mammals. The parents can have several broods in a single season.Malabar lark
The Malabar lark, or Malabar crested lark (Galerida malabarica) is a species of lark in the family Alaudidae found in western India.Oriental skylark
The Oriental skylark (Alauda gulgula), also known as the small skylark, is a species of skylark found in southern, central and eastern Asia. Like other skylarks, it is found in open grassland where it feeds on seeds and insects.Raso lark
The Raso lark (Alauda razae) is a small passerine bird with a highly restricted range, being found only on Raso islet in the Cape Verde Islands. This critically endangered member of the family Alaudidae lives in very arid terrain, and is considered one of the least known birds in the Western Palaearctic region, due to its remoteness and the lack of much ornithological study on the archipelago as a whole.Red-capped lark
The red-capped lark, Calandrella cinerea, is a small passerine bird. This lark breeds in the highlands of eastern Africa southwards from Ethiopia and northern Somalia. In the south, its range stretches across the continent to Angola and south to the Cape in South Africa.Rufous-rumped lark
The rufous-rumped lark (Pinarocorys erythropygia) is a species of lark in the family Alaudidae. It is found in western and central Africa from Mali, Guinea and Sierra Leone to eastern Sudan, South Sudan and north-western Uganda. Its natural habitat is dry savannah.
Originally, the rufous-rumped lark was classified within the genus Alauda. Later, some authorities considered the rufous-rumped lark to be a species within the genera Certhilauda and Mirafra. Alternate common names include red-rumped lark, red-tailed bush lark and red-tailed lark.White-winged lark
The white-winged lark (Alauda leucoptera) is a species of lark found from southern Ukraine through Kazakhstan to south-central Russia. It is partially migratory, with birds tending to move south in winter. The southernmost birds are mainly resident. It is a very rare vagrant to western Europe.Woodlark
The woodlark or wood lark (Lullula arborea) is the only extant species in the lark genus Lullula. It is found across most of Europe, the Middle East, western Asia and the mountains of north Africa. It is mainly resident (non-migratory) in the west of its range, but eastern populations of this passerine bird are more migratory, moving further south in winter.
There are two subspecies of woodlark, L. a. arborea and L. a. pallida. The former is native to northern regions of Europe, while the latter can be found in the south of the woodlark's range. Their diet is mostly composed of seeds but also includes insects during the breeding period. A comparatively small bird, the woodlark is between 13.5 and 15 centimetres long and roughly 20% shorter than the skylark. It is a brown bird with a pale underside and has a white-tipped tail.