Family Larks (Alaudidae)

Least Concern

White-tailed Lark (Mirafra albicauda)


French: Alouette à queue blanche German: Weißschwanzlerche Spanish: Alondra coliblanca

Mirafra albicauda


, 1891,

Gonda, Tabora District, Tanzania


See M. passerina. Apparently isolated population in SW Tanzania previously separated as race rukwensis. Monotypic.


Locally in Chad (L Chad), E Sudan, N South Sudan, SC Ethiopia, NE DRCongo, Uganda, NW & SW Kenya and N & SW Tanzania.

Descriptive notes

13 cm; 20–25 g. Small, compact lark with shortish, stout bill. Has prominent pale lores and supercilium, contrasting with brownish ear-coverts, latter separated from... read more


Male display song a long, rambling series of chirps and whistles, less varied than that of M.... read more


Prefers dense, fairly short grassland, usually on black-cotton soils; often found around lake... read more

Food and feeding

Food includes insects, e.g. grasshoppers (Acrididae), also seeds and other vegetable matter. Forages terrestrially, picking food from... read more


Recorded Mar–May. Male sings in protracted aerial display, circling over territory and then dropping steeply to ground. Nest a... read more


Little known. Probably resident.

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Generally uncommon; locally common in parts of E Africa. Often hard to observe on ground and, except when displaying, is easily... read more

Recommended citation

Ryan, P. (2020). White-tailed Lark (Mirafra albicauda). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 21 February 2020).