Related to a group called the "wagtails", American Pipits share their habit
of wagging their tails when walking over open territory. They can be found
throughout North America at some point during the year, nesting in the far
north and high elevations in the west in summer, migrating throughout much
of the continent in spring and fall, and wintering in in the southern U.S.
and near the coasts. American Pipits are formerly
known as the "Water Pipit".
Habitat: Prefers open terrain during migration
through the state, including mudflats, beaches, sandbars, and barren fields.
Diet: Mostly insects. Will
also eat seeds, especially those wintering inland.
Behavior: Feeds by walking along the ground,
looking for insects. They are normally found in flocks, except during
the breeding season.
Breeding: Non-breeder in South Dakota
Song: Rapid series in
flight of chweee-chweee-chweee.
Migration: Summers in Northern Canada, British Columbia, Alaska, and
high elevations in the Rocky Mountains. Winters in the southern U.S.,
along the coasts, and points south.
Conservation Status: Numbers and range are generally stable
Cornell University's "All About Birds - American Pipit"
Photo Information: November 10th, 2008 - Wall Lake
in Minnehaha County, South Dakota - Terry Sohl
Additional Photos: Click on the image chips or
text links below for additional, higher-resolution American Pipit photos.