Curlews belong to a group of nine species characterised by mottled brown plumage and a long downturned bill used for probing soft ground or mud for their prey. This is a Eurasian curlew spotted at Rutland Water in January 2020. It is the largest UK wader, about the size of a female pheasant. They can be seen in a variety of habitats such as upland moors and farmland as well as shorelines and mudflats. Their call, once heard, is quite distinctive. Search ‘curlew call’ for examples but bear in mind any ringtones offered may not be true to life. 🙂
These are some of my other sightings from various locations but I have yet to see one in my local area. They are not that common in my experience in fact they are a declining species so we need to support organisations like the RSPB and the Wildlife Trusts in their conservation work.
Finally, a similar but smaller wader that I have seen locally is the whimbrel, which will feature in next year’s Wildlife Calendar by Beeston Birdman 😎
PS It’s ‘Blowing my own trumpet’ time again. I have had another contribution published in the Autumn edition of Birdwatching magazine.