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Superregnum: Eukaryota
Cladus: Unikonta
Cladus: Opisthokonta
Cladus: Holozoa
Regnum: Animalia
Subregnum: Eumetazoa
Cladus: Bilateria
Cladus: Nephrozoa
Superphylum: Deuterostomia
Phylum: Chordata
Subphylum: Vertebrata
Infraphylum: Gnathostomata
Megaclassis: Osteichthyes
Cladus: Sarcopterygii
Cladus: Rhipidistia
Cladus: Tetrapodomorpha
Cladus: Eotetrapodiformes
Cladus: Elpistostegalia
Superclassis: Tetrapoda
Cladus: Reptiliomorpha
Cladus: Amniota
Classis: Reptilia
Cladus: Eureptilia
Cladus: Romeriida
Subclassis: Diapsida
Cladus: Sauria
Infraclassis: Archosauromorpha
Cladus: Crurotarsi
Divisio: Archosauria
Cladus: Avemetatarsalia
Cladus: Ornithodira
Subtaxon: Dinosauromorpha
Cladus: Dinosauriformes
Cladus: Dracohors
Cladus: Dinosauria
Ordo: Saurischia
Cladus: Eusaurischia
Cladus: Theropoda
Cladus: Neotheropoda
Cladus: Averostra
Cladus: Tetanurae
Cladus: Avetheropoda
Cladus: Coelurosauria
Cladus: Tyrannoraptora
Cladus: Maniraptoromorpha
Cladus: Maniraptoriformes
Cladus: Maniraptora
Cladus: Pennaraptora
Cladus: Paraves
Cladus: Eumaniraptora
Cladus: Avialae
Infraclassis: Aves
Cladus: Euavialae
Cladus: Avebrevicauda
Cladus: Pygostylia
Cladus: Ornithothoraces
Cladus: Ornithuromorpha
Cladus: Carinatae
Parvclassis: Neornithes
Cohors: Neognathae
Cladus: Neoaves
Cladus: Telluraves
Cladus: Australaves
Ordo: Passeriformes
Subordo: Passeri
Infraordo: Passerida
Superfamilia: Passeroidea

Familia: Icteridae
Genus: Sturnella
Species: S. magna – S. neglecta

Species transferred to Leistes: S. bellicosa – S. defilippii – S. loyca – S. militaris – S. superciliaris

Sturnella Vieillot, 1816

Typus: Alauda magna Linnaeus, 1758 = Sturnella magna


Pezites Cabanis, 1851 Mus.Hein. p. 191 BHL

Primary references

Vieillot, L.J.P. 1816. Analyse d'une nouvelle ornithologie élémentaire. 70 pp. Paris: Deterville. Original description p.34 BHL Reference page.

Additional references

Powell, A. F.L.A., Barker, F. K., Lanyon, S. M., Burns, K. J., Klicka, J., & Lovette, I. J. 2014. A comprehensive species-level molecular phylogeny of the New World blackbirds (Icteridae). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 71: 94-112. DOI: 10.1016/j.ympev.2013.11.009 Full article (PDF)Reference page.
Remsen, J.V. Jr., Powell, A.F.L.A., Schodde, R., Barker, F.K. & Lanyon, S.M. 2016. A revised classification of the Icteridae (Aves) based on DNA sequence data. Zootaxa 4093(2): 285–292. DOI: 10.11646/zootaxa.4093.2.9 Reference page.

Vernacular names
Deutsch: Lerchenstärlinge
English: Meadowlark
suomi: Preeriaturpiaalit
lietuvių: Pieviniai trupialai
русский: Луговые трупиалы

The genus Sturnella are North American grassland birds called meadowlarks. The genus was previously lumped with the South American meadowlarks now placed in the genus Leistes.

It includes two or three species of largely insectivorous grassland birds. In all species the male at least has a black or brown back and extensively yellow underparts.

Taxonomy and list of species

The genus Sturnella was introduced in 1816 by the French ornithologist Louis Jean Pierre Vieillot with the eastern meadowlark (Sturnella magna) as the type species.[1][2] The name Sturnella is a diminutive of the Latin sturnus meaning "starling".[3]

By the early 20th century, the meadowlarks were split. Only the "yellow-breasted" meadowlarks (eastern and western meadowlarks, including Lilian's) remained in the genus Sturnella. The red-breasted and white-browed meadowlarks were moved to the genus Leistes, while the pampas meadowlark, Peruvian meadowlark and long-tailed meadowlark made up the genus Pezites, which was established by Cabanis in 1851. By the late 20th century, all meadowlarks were lumped in the genus Sturnella. In 2017, all the red-breasted meadowlarks were merged into the genus Leistes.

The genus contains two species:[4]

Eastern meadowlark, Sturnella magna
Western meadowlark, Sturnella neglecta


Vieillot, Louis Jean Pierre (1816). Analyse d'une Nouvelle Ornithologie Élémentaire (in French). Paris: Deterville/self. p. 34.
Paynter, Raymond A. Jr, ed. (1968). Check-List of Birds of the World. Vol. 14. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Museum of Comparative Zoology. p. 177.
Jobling, James A. (2010). The Helm Dictionary of Scientific Bird Names. London: Christopher Helm. p. 368. ISBN 978-1-4081-2501-4.

Gill, Frank; Donsker, David; Rasmussen, Pamela, eds. (2020). "Oropendolas, orioles, blackbirds". IOC World Bird List Version 10.2. International Ornithologists' Union. Retrieved 9 October 2020.

Further reading

del Hoyo, Josep; Elliott, Andrew; Christie, David, eds. (2011). Handbook of Birds of the World, volume 16: Tanagers to New World Blackbirds. Barcelona, Spain: Lynx Edicions. ISBN 978-84-96553-78-1.
New World Blackbirds by Jaramillo and Burke, ISBN 0-7136-4333-1
Powell, A.F.L.A.; Barker, F.K.; Lanyon, S.M.; Burns, K.J.; Klicka, J.; Lovette, I.J. (2014). "A comprehensive species-level molecular phylogeny of the New World blackbirds (Icteridae)". Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. 71: 94–112. doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2013.11.009. PMID 24291659.

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