I guess, if you spend a lot of time walking through the grass, you need to develop a high-stepping gate.
The reason: Habitat loss. Meadows being converted to subdivisions or cornfields and the ones kept in grasses are often mowed too early in the season.
Audubon magazine writes, "Like many grassland birds, meadowlarks are threatened by changes in farming. With the recent push for ethanol and other biofuels, there is a real danger that many acres currently being protected under the farm bill's Conservation Reserve Program will be converted from the meadowlark's prairie habitat to cornfields."
Other species in decline I've blogged about:
- Top photo by Jason Dykes. Thanks, Jason.