Out on the plains around Laramie, many songbirds are busy feeding nestlings and fledglings. I recently took a trip up to the Old Laramie River Road, which runs through a variety of grassland types, from the typical dry shortgrass prairie to wetter, longer grass habitats closer to the Laramie River. This variety of grassland habitats means that this area has some of the best diversity of grassland species in Albany County, including both longspurs, Lark Buntings, and Vesper Sparrows, among many others.
Many species, including Horned Larks (Eremophila alpestris), and McCown's Longspurs (Rhyncophanes mccownii) have fledged young, and already seem to be flocking in preparation for their southward migration toward the end of August.
|McCown's Longspur (Rhynchophanes mccownii) fledgling - Albany Co.|
|Chestnut-collared Longspur (Calcarius ornatus) - Albany Co.|
|Chestnut-collared Longspur fledgling - Albany Co.|
|Lark Bunting (Calamospiza melanocorys) - Albany Co.|
|Ferruginous Hawk (Buteo regalis) juvenile - Albany Co.|
Note: all photos in this post are © Shawn Billerman