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Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Passeriformes
Family: Emberizidae
Genus: Calcarius
Bechstein, 1802
See text.

The Longspurs, genus Calcarius, are a group of birds in the family Emberizidae. The name refers to the long claw on the hind toe of each foot.

These are chunky ground-feeding birds with long wings which are usually seen in open areas. Males declare ownership of a territory by singing during short flights over it. The male's breeding plumage is much brighter than his winter plumage. These birds gather in large flocks in winter. The longspurs are all found in North America; the Lapland Longspur, or Lapland Bunting, is also found in Europe and Asia.

The full list of species is:

  • McCown's Longspur, Calcarius mccownii
    Lapland Longspur, or Lapland Bunting, Calcarius lapponicus
    Smith's Longspur, Calcarius pictus
    Chestnut-collared Longspur, Calcarius ornatus

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This guide is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia.