Chihuahuan Meadowlark Sturnella lilianae Scientific name definitions

Johanna K. Beam, Levi A. Jaster, William E. Jensen, and Wesley E. Lanyon
Version: 1.0 — Published October 25, 2022

Demography and Populations

Measures of Breeding Activity

There are no detailed studies for Chihuahuan Meadowlark, however, similarities to Eastern Meadowlark (Sturnella magna) and Western Meadowlark (Sturnella neglecta) are expected.

Age At First Breeding

In other meadowlarks, both sexes breed during their second year, at 10-11 months old (37).

Clutch Size and Number of Clutches per Season

Probably similar to Eastern Meadowlark and Western Meadowlark with several clutches but few successfully fledged young per year and clutch size varying from 2–7 eggs (37).

Annual and Lifetime Reproductive Success

Has not been studied.

Life Span and Survivorship

Has not been studied. Possibly similar to other meadowlarks which show lifespans up to 9-10 years old (49, 50, 51).

Disease and Body Parasites

Has not been studied.

Causes of Mortality

More information needed. In Western Meadowlark, deaths from drowning in a stock tank have been reported (52), as well as human and animal predation (37, 6).

Population Spatial Metrics

Information needed.

Population Status


No population estimates known for species as a whole, however Chihuahuan Meadowlark has an estimated population size of 240,000 in Arizona (53). Comprehensive breeding bird survey data is needed for this species.


Trends for Chihuahuan Meadowlark are incomplete, however current data shows the species is declining in New Mexico and the Chihuahuan Desert (53).

Population Regulation

Has not been studied in Chihuahuan Meadowlark.

Recommended Citation

Beam, J. K., L. A. Jaster, W. E. Jensen, and W. E. Lanyon (2022). Chihuahuan Meadowlark (Sturnella lilianae), version 1.0. In Birds of the World (N. D. Sly, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. https://doi.org/10.2173/bow.lilmea2.01