Main Menu

Class Aves
Order Passeriformes
Family Laniidae



Two species of shrikes occur now in the region, but only the Loggerhead Shrike is common.


Lanius excubitor Linnaeus 1758—Great Gray ShrikePleistocene regional distribution of Lanius excubitor


Mid Wisconsin-Holocene: Stanton's Cave (Rea and Hargrave 1984).

Literature. Rea and Hargrave 1984.


Lanius ludovicianus Linnaeus 1766—Loggerhead ShrikePleistocene regional distribution of Lanius ludovicianus

Lanius ludovicianus, painting by L. A. FuentesLoggerhead Shrikes are unique among our passeriformes in impaling their prey on thorns or other sharp projections. The prey may include vertebrate as well as invertebrate animals.

Fig. 1. Loggerhead Shrike. Painting by Louis Agassiz Fuertes. After Henshaw (1921).

Horned lizard impaled by a shrike

Fig. 2. A horned lizard impaled on the sharp end of a yucca leaf by a Loggerhead Shrike.


Wisconsin: Carpinteria (Guthrie 2009).

Mid/Late Wisconsin: Rancho La Brea (Stock and Harris 1992).

Mid Wisconsin-Holocene: Shelter Cave (Howard and Miller 1933).

Late Wisconsin: Harris' Pocket (Harris 1989).

Literature. Guthrie 2009; Harris 1989; Howard and Miller 1933; Stock and Harris 1992.


Last Update: 27 Dec 2013