Manitoba Bird Bird Atlas: Species At Risk

Sprague’s Pipit

Early Breeding and Last Migration Dates

South: Regions 1 to 8 Central: Regions 9 to 12 North: Regions 13 and 14
Early Breeding Last Migration Late Breeding Early Breeding Last Migration Late Breeding Early Breeding Last Migration Late Breeding
Apr-21 May-11 Aug-25

Breeding Evidence

Areas of habitat suitable for breeding sites must be greater than 150 hectares for Sprague’s Pipits. Habitats become unsuitable for breeding where livestock activity is intense, when native habitat is harvested as hay, when fires are suppressed, or when native grasslands become fragmented by human activities.

Sprague’s Pipit nest on the ground. The nest is very well concealed among tall grasses.


Breeding Evidence Map

Native grassland is an important habitat for Sprague’s Pipits; however they are sometiems found in tame pasture or in areas where native grasses have been replaced with introduced forages. In general, pipits prefer native vegetation of intermediate height and density, with moderate amounts of litter. Such areas tend to occur where habitats are lightly to moderately grazed, or where fires periodically remove vegetation.

In Manitoba, they formerly occurred east to the edge of the boreal forest but have apparently lost much of their former range. Currently occupied areas include:

  • south and southwest of Pipestone;
  • in the ‘Poverty Plains’ north and east of Pierson;
  • in the hay-growing country near Oak Lake and Plum Lake;
  • in the Ellis Archie and Spy Hill Community Pastures near St. Lazare; and
  • in tame pasture and fescue prairie around Riding Mountain and Asessippi Provincial Park.

-from COSEWIC and The Birds of Manitoba (p. 311)