Larks (Alaudidae)

Grey-backed Sparrow-lark (Eremopterix verticalis) - HBW 9, p. 572

French: Moinelette à dos gris German: Graurückenlerche Spanish: Terrera Dorsigrís
Other common names: Grey-backed Finch-lark

Taxonomy: Megalotis verticalis A. Smith, 1836, Colesberg, Orange River, Northern Cape, South Africa.
Relationships uncertain; suggested as forming a superspecies with E. signatus, sometimes expanded to include also E. nigriceps and E. leucopareia. Precise breeding ranges of races inadequately understood; birds breeding in SW Zambia of uncertain racial identity; presumably include harti, but all four races recorded in that country. Four subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution:

  • damarensis Roberts, 1931 - coastal Angola (including Cabinda), Namibia, W Botswana and NW South Africa; periodic eruptions E to W Zambia and W Zimbabwe.
  • harti Benson & Irwin, 1965 - W Zambia.
  • khama Irwin, 1957 - NE Botswana and W Zimbabwe; periodic eruptions NE to W Zambia.
  • verticalis (A. Smith, 1836) - SW Zimbabwe, SE Botswana and South Africa (except NW); periodic eruptions N to W Zambia.