Old Field and Hedgerow


While these are rather “unnatural” habitats, a wide-variety of birds frequent them nonetheless. Old fields refer to areas of fallow farmland and pastures. Various grasses, forbs, and shrubs grow up to replace the wheat or corn that once grew in these fertile fields. These areas are in a stage where they are reverting back to nature. Birds and other wildlife contribute by dropping seeds from flowers, shrubs, and trees. Wooded hedgerows are common in agricultural land as windbreaks and fencerows. These unattended hedges are overgrown with Osage Orange, Honey/Black Locust, Eastern Red Cedar, dogwoods, elderberries, cherries, and wild plum. Also check out corn stubble and other recently harvested fields for foraging birds.

Characteristic Birds

The birds you might find in these areas can overlap with those found in grassland, prairie, savanna, and woodland. Look for Red-tailed Hawk, American Kestrel, Northern Cardinal, Orchard Oriole, Lark Sparrow, Horned Lark, Lapland Longspur, Bobolink, Blue Grosbeak, Brown Thrasher, Brown-headed Cowbird, Northern Mockingbird, Mourning Dove, Barn Swallow, Field Sparrow, American Tree Sparrow, Purple Finch, American Goldfinch, Purple Martin, and Northern Bobwhite.