Broad-billed Sandpiper/Limicola falcinellus

Broad-billed Sandpiper/Limicola falcinellus - Photographer: Светослав Спасов
Broad-billed Sandpiper/Limicola falcinellus - Photographer: Светослав Спасов
Broad-billed Sandpiper/Limicola falcinellus - Photographer: Любомир Андреев - Лу_пи
Broad-billed Sandpiper/Limicola falcinellus - Photographer: Светослав Спасов

L 15-18 cm. Breeds in wettest parts of upland or taiga bogs; summer visitor (mostly late May-Aug), winters E Africa, S Asia on or near coasts. Scarce passage migrant anywhere in Europe but more common in E than W; in Britain & Ireland, 2-3 records annually. During migration seen resting both on inland marshes and on coasts. Nest is lined cup in tussock.
IDENTIFICATION: Easily overlooked as a young Dunlin, but is slightly smaller, enhanced by somewhat shorter legs, and usually slower feeding action giving more stocky and furtive impression; bill Dunlin-like but rather long and straighter in profile, with subtle downward kink only near tip; even at long range juveniles often picked out by size, slow movements, dark upperparts and white belly; while in Europe, has boldly striped head pattern (obvious dark eye-stripe, strong pale supercilium, and thin pale lateral stripes on dark crown). - Adult summer: Distinctive combination of heavily streaked flanks (often with arrowheads) and complete breast-band with dark upperparts with thin white mantle- and scapular-Vs; in fresh plumage whitish fringes give frosted look, but when worn upperparts and breast become very dark and Vs reduced or lacking. - Adult winter: Dunlin-like, but a hint of distinctive head pattern retained. - Juvenile: Upperparts like strongly marked Dunlin, but underpart pattern is very different, with well-marked, brownwashed breast-band streaked at sides, contrasting with all-white belly and flanks.
VOICE: Flight-call is a dry, high-pitched, buzzing trill, a little upwardinflected, ‘brrre-eet’; also short ‘chep’. In display-flight has rhythmic, buzzing ‘brre, brre, brre berre berre brebrebrebre…’, recognized by the callnote voice (Sand Martin-like).

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