(1. Plectrophanes, Meyer).
Crown of the head, and upper part of the breast, black; above the eye a white band, prolonged on the sides of the neck: nape, back, and scapulars, varied with brown and red.
E. calcarata, Temm. Man. d'Orn. torn. I. p. 322. Plectrophanes Lapponica, Selb. in Linn. Trans, vol. xv. p. 156. pl. 1. (Young). Faun. Bar. Amer. part 2. p. 248. pl. 48. (Adult). Lapland Finch, Lath. Syn. vol. n. p. 263. Lapland Lark-Bunting, Selb. Illust. vol. I. p. 283. pl. 100. f. 6.
Entire length six inches eight lines: length of the bill (from the forehead) six lines, (from the gape) six lines and a quarter; of the tarsus ten lines; of the hind toe, claw included, nine lines and a quarter; of the tail two inches nine lines; of the folded wing three inches nine lines. Faun. Bor. Amer.
(Young). "Bill yellowish brown, palest towards the base of the under mandible: head, and all the upper parts of the body, pale wood-brown, tinged with yellowish gray; the shafts of the feathers blackish brown: greater wing-coverts, and secondary quills, blackish brown, deeply margined with chestnut or orange-brown; the tips white: quills dusky brown, paler at the edge: above the eyes a broad streak of pale wood-brown: cheeks and ear-coverts wood-brown, the latter mixed with black: from the corners of the under mandible, on each side of the throat, a streak of blackish brown: throat yellowish white: lower part of the neck and breast dirty white, with numerous dusky spots: belly and vent white: flanks with oblong dusky streaks: tail dusky, the outer feather with the exterior web, and half of the interior, dirty white: the second with a small wedge-shaped white spot near the tip: legs and toes brown: claws not much hooked, the posterior nearly straight, and longer than the toe." Selby. In the adult male, which has not yet occurred in this country, the head, chin, throat, and upper part of the breast, are velvet black, with a broad whitish band down the sides of the neck, commencing above the eyes and dilating into an open space in about the middle of its course: nape bright .chestnut; rest of the upper plumage pale reddish brown, with a blackish streak in the middle of each feather: wing-coverts with two obsolete white bands; primaries hair-brown, their exterior edges whitish: belly and under tail-coverts dusky white; sides of the breast, and flanks, spotted with black: bill bright lemon-yellow, tipped with black: legs pitch-black. The female differs in having the chin grayish, the black plumage of the head and breast edged with pale brown and gray, and the chestnut feathers of the nape fringed with white: the white band duller. (Egg). Pale ochre-yellow, spotted with brown. Faun. Bor. Amer.
Of this species, which is a native of high northern latitudes, only four individuals have hitherto occurred in this country: the first of these was taken in Cambridgeshire; the second in the neighbourhood of Brighton; the third near London, in Sept. 1828; the fourth near Preston in Lancashire, in Oct. 1833. All the specimens were in immature plumage. Habits said to resemble those of the Larks. Food principally seeds. Nest composed externally of dry stems of grass, and lined with hair. Eggs usually seven in number.