Mongolian Short-toed Lark Calandrella dukhunensis Scientific name definitions

Per Alström and Sundev Gombobaatar
Version: 2.0 — Published September 17, 2021


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Breeding Range

The breeding range of Mongolian Short-toed Lark has recently been shown to be much smaller than previously believed, and 4 suggested that it is confined to the central and eastern part of Mongolia (east of ca 103°E) and marginally neighboring parts of the Nei Menggu (Nei Mongol) Province of China (at least northern part) and perhaps also neighboring parts of Russia. Previous authors have included the eastern part of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau all the way south to the Indian border. For example, 9 gave the breeding range as “Tibet, central and northeastern China, the eastern half of Mongolia and Transbaikalia”. 4 suggested that the misconceived breeding distribution has been based on migrant Mongolian Short-toed Larks (the species is a common migrant on the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau) or misidentified breeding Hume's Larks (Calandrella acutirostris).

Nonbreeding Range

Mongolian Short-toed Lark winters in India, mainly in the central and southern parts (10, 11), although the distribution is very poorly known, mainly because of potential confusion with Greater Short-toed Lark (Calandrella brachydactyla) (which winters commonly in northwestern India). It has previously also been stated that a few Mongolian Short-toed Larks may winter in Mongolia (12) and that it winters in China, from Hebei (Hopeh) to northern Yunnan Province (13, 14), but this is most likely based on late migrants (4).

Extralimital Records

There are many records from outside of the usual breeding, winter and migration areas that probably pertain to Mongolian Short-toed Lark, but the problem of distinguishing this species from Greater Short-toed Lark, and the general lack of information before these were split make it hard to verify the extralimital occurrence of Mongolian Short-toed Lark. However, birds that are likely to be this species (although sometimes published as C. b. longipennis) are rare but annual in Japan (15) and South Korea (regular spring migrant, very few autumn records; 16), and it has been recorded as a vagrant to Taiwan, Hong Kong (17), Thailand, Myanmar, the Andaman Islands (18) and the Maldives (19). There is a claimed record from Israel (20).

Historical Changes to the Distribution

No real changes to the distribution are known, although the species was until recently considered to have a much wider range.

Distribution of the Mongolian Short-toed Lark
  • Year-round
  • Migration
  • Breeding
  • Non-Breeding
Distribution of the Mongolian Short-toed Lark

Recommended Citation

Alström, P. and S. Gombobaatar (2021). Mongolian Short-toed Lark (Calandrella dukhunensis), version 2.0. In Birds of the World (S. M. Billerman and B. K. Keeney, Editors). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. https://doi.org/10.2173/bow.sstlar4.02