Recurvirostridae - avocets, stilts
There are 9 species in this family of shorebirds. They are found in marshy areas all over the world, except for Antarctica.
Most species are 12-18 inches tall. They have very long legs; long necks and long, pointed bills. Avocets' bills curve up at the end! Stilts have straight bills. Stilts have reddish-pink legs and avocets have grayish-blue legs. Avocets and the banded stilt have webbed front toes. The other stilts have partially webbed toes.
Most species of avocet and stilt are black and white. The American avocet's head and neck are a rusty red in breeding season and grayish white in winter. The red-necked avocet has a reddish brown head and neck.
Avocets and stilts eat small fish, insects, mollusks, and small crustaceans, but they locate their prey in different ways. Avocets sweep their heads from side to side in shallow water and use their curved bills to feel for prey . Stilts locate their prey by sight and snatch it up in their long, straight bills.
World Status Key
US Status Key
Least Concern Near Threatened Vulnerable Endangered Critically Endangered Extinct in Wild Extinct
Status taken from ICUN Redlist. If no status is listed, there is not enough data to establish status, or there is no status data for the species.
Threatened in US Threatened in NH Endangered in US Endangered in NH Introduced
Status taken from US Fish and Wildlife and NH Fish and Game
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