Breeds throughout most of temperate North America from southeastern Alaska (Trapp et al. 1981), the southern Yukon and Mackenzie east to the Maritime Provinces and south through the northeastern United States to the southwestern United States to Baja California. Winters from the southern United States south to Colombia and Peru including the West Indies; occasionally farther north where marshes remain ice-free.

Status in British Columbia
Rare to locally fairly common summer visitant from southern British Columbia, including southeastern Vancouver Island, the Fraser Lowlands, the southern interior, and the Kootenays, north through the Chilcotin-Cariboo and Nechako Lowland to the Peace and Fort Nelson lowlands. Very rare in the Bulkley and Nass basins. Casual on the Queen Charlotte Islands, the Teslin Plateau and the Chilkat Pass area. In winter, very rare visitant to the Fraser Lowlands; accidental in the Okanagan valley and on the Queen Charlotte Islands.

Breeding
The Sora breeds from extreme southern Vancouver Island, the south mainland coast and Fraser Lowlands, and from the southern interior north th Read More
Breeds throughout most of temperate North America from southeastern Alaska (Trapp et al. 1981), the southern Yukon and Mackenzie east to the Maritime Provinces and south through the northeastern United States to the southwestern United States to Baja California. Winters from the southern United States south to Colombia and Peru including the West Indies; occasionally farther north where marshes remain ice-free.

Status in British Columbia
Rare to locally fairly common summer visitant from southern British Columbia, including southeastern Vancouver Island, the Fraser Lowlands, the southern interior, and the Kootenays, north through the Chilcotin-Cariboo and Nechako Lowland to the Peace and Fort Nelson lowlands. Very rare in the Bulkley and Nass basins. Casual on the Queen Charlotte Islands, the Teslin Plateau and the Chilkat Pass area. In winter, very rare visitant to the Fraser Lowlands; accidental in the Okanagan valley and on the Queen Charlotte Islands.

Breeding
The Sora breeds from extreme southern Vancouver Island, the south mainland coast and Fraser Lowlands, and from the southern interior north through the Chilcotin-Cariboo regions and the Nechako Lowlands to the Peace Lowlands. There is an isolated record from Atlin in northwestern British Columbia.
It breeds in a variety of freshwater and brackish wetland habitats including marshes, sloughs, lakes, ponds, and wet meadows, that usually contain cattail, bulrushes, and sedges. Willow swamps, marshy river and stream edges, dry grass meadows, drainage and irrigation ditches, and wet fields are used occasionally. Most nests were in wet situations and were positioned among dense emergent vegetation, including cattail, sedges, and rushes, or in dense grasses. Nest materials included reeds, grasses, sedges, bulrushes, and cattails with a lining of dry grasses, weed stalks or sedges. Nests were usually well concealed with vegetation bent over to form a dome. Clutch size ranged from 1 to 16 eggs with a majority having 8 to 11 eggs.

Copyright © 2003, Royal British Columbia Museum Corporation (RBCM). All rights reserved.

Sora Bird Song

The Royal British Columbia Museum
Canadian Heritage Information Network

Copyright © 2003, Royal British Columbia Museum Corporation (RBCM). All rights reserved.


Tape Number: M6.082(07a)
Recording Remarks: 15 ips, Nagra IIIB, AKG Microphone, 40" Parabolic Reflecto. Both birds called - at least another bird near the 1st recording called, a lower tone. May be female. Whinny is heard about 1/4 from end. Next different tone and high level sounds - 7 minutes in.
Length: 11:05
Location Description: 5-6:00 a.m., 35-40 degrees F, swamp: 1/4 - 1/2 acre with Cattails, Rushes, Willows and other marsh growth.
Location Name: Swamp on Ascot Drive, Victoria, BC
General Remarks: At first calls on tape came from further end of marsh (eastern) then nearer and finally exposed for first time in area of marsh directly in front of me, calling all the time while feeding on shallow of marsh surface. The lead harldly lifted to make the calls. Moved into the edge of reed clump he called and fluttered wings and (shorked?) with wings lifted and head lowered. Another bird then appeared from within the clump and made small sounds (towards tape end) and disappeared.
Date: 1970/05/19
Recorder Read More
Tape Number: M6.082(07a)
Recording Remarks: 15 ips, Nagra IIIB, AKG Microphone, 40" Parabolic Reflecto. Both birds called - at least another bird near the 1st recording called, a lower tone. May be female. Whinny is heard about 1/4 from end. Next different tone and high level sounds - 7 minutes in.
Length: 11:05
Location Description: 5-6:00 a.m., 35-40 degrees F, swamp: 1/4 - 1/2 acre with Cattails, Rushes, Willows and other marsh growth.
Location Name: Swamp on Ascot Drive, Victoria, BC
General Remarks: At first calls on tape came from further end of marsh (eastern) then nearer and finally exposed for first time in area of marsh directly in front of me, calling all the time while feeding on shallow of marsh surface. The lead harldly lifted to make the calls. Moved into the edge of reed clump he called and fluttered wings and (shorked?) with wings lifted and head lowered. Another bird then appeared from within the clump and made small sounds (towards tape end) and disappeared.
Date: 1970/05/19
Recorder: Grace Bell

Copyright © 2003, Royal British Columbia Museum Corporation (RBCM). All rights reserved.

Learning Objectives

The learner will:

  • Become familiar with the appearance, song, and ecology, of Canadian marsh birds, with particular reference to British Columbia
  • understand the importance of field notes in ecology, and be aware of typical information found in such notes

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