Never look for birds of this year…

Never look for birds of this year in the nests of the last.

A Cervantes (Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra) quotation

American Avocet

Have you spotted this bird?

This species is migratory, and mostly winters on the southern Atlantic and Pacific coasts of Mexico and the United States.

Identification Tips:
• Length: 15 inches
• Large, very long-legged shorebird
• Long, very thin, upturned black bill
• Blue-gray legs
• White rump and tail
• Sexes similar, but bill is more strongly recurved in female than in male

Adult alternate:
• Rust red head, neck and chest
• White lores and eye ring
• White upper back, breast, belly and tail
• White back is bordered by two long, black stripes on the scapulars
• Black outer wing and white inner wing, with a black bar through middle of inner wing

Adult basic:
• Similar to adult alternate, but head, neck, and chest are grayish

Juvenile:
• Gray face
• Rusty wash on head and hind neck

This avocet has long, thin, gray legs. The plumage is black and white on the back with white on the underbelly. The neck and head are cinnamon colored in the summer and gray in the winter. The long, thin bill is upturned at the end. The adult is about 45 cm (18 inches) tall.

Behavior: Avocets are at all times tame and unsuspicious, very solicitous and aggressive on their breeding grounds, quiet and indifferent at other times, showing only mild curiosity. Their demonstrations of anxiety on their nesting grounds, particularly if they have young, are amusing and ludicrous. Regardless of their own safety, they meet the intruder more than half-way and stay with him till he leaves.

 

 

Never look for birds of this year in the nests of the last.

By Cervantes (Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra)

 

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