The bobolink (Delichonyx oryzivorus) is a locally common breeder in BCR 14. Its populations have been declining due to the loss of the grasslands it uses as habitat. Modern mowing practices are also adversely affecting this species. It is listed as a Species of Greatest Conservation Need in one or more states in BCR 14.

Habitat Needs

This species is generally restricted to large open fields of tall grass including hay fields and grain crops. It does not use alfalfa fields. It will also use wet meadows or lightly grazed pasture land. It needs dense stands of vegetation such as hay, clover and weeds. It often nests in transition zones between dry and wet field areas. The timing of hatching (between June 1 and 30) and the 11 days that the newly hatched young remain in the nest often coincides with the first cut for hay or silage.

Its territory ranges from about 2 to 12. The territories are smaller in the better habitat.

Habitat Management Practices

Retain large areas (30 or more acres) of grass-dominated vegetation. Mowing the majority of the area after mid-July.

Additional Information

Forest Types