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Monday, April 22, 2013

COGUJADA A SMALL BIRD

Crested Lark
Photo from: Sergey Yeliseev

OCast copada, L. Galerida cristata, Eng crested lark. This small bird live on grassy plains, in semi-desert areas and cultivated lands. This bird is found all over Spain, but especially in Catalonia, Estremadura and Andalusia. In England, it is rare today put can be found in the south and in Wales. Although some are migratory, most are residents. There are some 15-20 subspecies. Generally, the crested lark weighs 0.8 oz (23g,); the body is about 5 ½” (14-15 cm) long while the wing span is about 11” (28-31 cm). Cristata (crested), European birds, are olive-brown or gray-brown and darker on top. The birds in Spain are cinnamon colored with reddish tinges. The most conspicuous features are the crest on the head, its unique call, “wee-wee-woo” with repetitive trills and its manner of rushing and running. Generally, it resides close to villages and cities. It builds its nest on the ground. In early winter, the male begins to defend its territory by singing a musical and chatty song that includes mimicking other birds in the area. He does this in flight, hovering over “his domain.” Villena listed it is as a commonly consumed bird during his time in Spain. It is not sold in markets but must be hunted. Like quail and other small birds, it could be fried or roasted. It was a popular food served during banquets with other small birds.  [ES:“Crested.” Apr 1, 04; ES: Crested Lark. Oct 12, 03; Jutglar. 1999:388-389; and Villena/Calero. 2002:22b; Villena/Saínz. 1969:134; and Villena/Navarro. 1879:263] 


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