Long-billed Curlew

General description.

The Long-billed Curlew is the largest of our shorebirds. Its distinguished beak has led to its nickname, "Sicklebill". While incubating, their warm, earth colors blend in with the landscape, making it difficult to spot them.

Flight pattern.

The Long-billed Curlew whirs and soars, flying long distances at night during migration.

Breeding habits.

This bird breeds on the Great Plains and praries of the west from southern Canada to northern California, Utah, New Mexico and Texas.

Calls or song.

The Long-billed whistles a prolonged, "KUR LEW", which carries throughout the flat and airy neighborhoods of his breeding ground.

Population and distribution.

Once numerous, the Long-billed Curlew is now protected. Due to human encroachment on formerly extensive priaries of the east, he has lost most of his breeding habitat. This bird migrates, in winter, to the coastal areas of California, the Gulf of Mexico, Florida and as far northeast as South Carolina, trading grassland for seashore.

Nesting habits.

The curlew lays 4 buff-olive eggs in a depression it makes in the prairie grass.

Similar birds:

Marbled Godwit Photo Marbled Godwit
Whimbrel Photo Whimbrel
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