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Rather stocky, short-tailed lark with long spiky crest. Upperparts sandy-grey or rusty, diffusely streaked darker on hindneck and mantle; breast more heavily streaked. Flight flappy, broad wings showing rusty-buff underwings; short tail blackish-brown with cinnamon sides. Lacks white trailing edge to wing. Juvenile heavily pale-spotted above. Voice Clear du-ee, also varying fluty ee or uu sounds. Song sweet and plaintive with phrases of four–six repeated notes; slower, clearer and shorter than Eurasian Skylark, often includes mimicry; from exposed perch or high in air.
Habitat Grassy or arid country, cultivated plains and semi-deserts; often near habitation, tracks and roadsides