The broad-billed sandpiper (Limicola falcinellus) is a small wading bird. It is the only member of the genus Limicola. The scientific name is from Latin. Limicola is "mud-dweller" from limus, "mud" and colere, "to dwell" and falcinella is from falx, falcis, "a sickle. Some research suggests that it should rather go into the genus Philomachus with the ruff and possibly the sharp-tailed sandpiper.
Broad-billed sandpipers are small waders, slightly smaller than the dunlin, but with a longer straighter bill, and shorter legs. The breeding adult has patterned dark grey upperparts and white underparts with blackish markings on the breast. It has a pale crown stripe and supercilia.
In the boreal winter, they are pale grey above and white below, like a winter dunlin, but retaining the head pattern. Juveniles have backs, similar to young dunlin, but the white flanks and belly and brown-streaked breast are distinctive.
Contact call is a dry, whistling “dree-it, dree-it” and a clicking “dik dik”.
Distribution and habitat
The broad-billed sandpiper is strongly migratory, spending the non-breeding season from easternmost Africa, through south and south-east Asia to Australasia. It is highly gregarious, and will form flocks with other calidrid waders, particularly dunlins. Despite its European breeding range, this species is rare on passage in western Europe, presumably because of the south-easterly migration route.
They forage in soft mud on marshes and the coast, mainly picking up food by sight. They mostly eat insects and other small invertebrates.
The broad-billed sandpiper is one of the species to which the Agreement on the Conservation of African-Eurasian Migratory Waterbirds (AEWA) applies.
- BirdLife International (2012). "Limicola falcinellus". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 26 November 2013.
- Jobling, James A (2010). The Helm Dictionary of Scientific Bird Names. London: Christopher Helm. pp. 157, 227. ISBN 978-1-4081-2501-4.
- Thomas, Gavin H.; Wills, Matthew A.; Székely, Tamás (2004). "A supertree approach to shorebird phylogeny". BMC Evolutionary Biology. 4: 28. doi:10.1186/1471-2148-4-28. PMC . PMID 15329156. Supplementary Material[permanent dead link]
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Limicola falcinellus.|
|Wikispecies has information related to: Limicola falcinellus|
- Oiseaux Photos
- BirdLife species factsheet for Limicola falcinellus
- "Limicola falcinellus". Avibase.
- "Broad-billed sandpiper media". Internet Bird Collection.
- Broad-billed sandpiper photo gallery at VIREO (Drexel University)
- Interactive range map of Limicola falcinellus at IUCN Red List maps
- Audio recordings of Broad-billed sandpiper on Xeno-canto.
- Limicola falcinellus in the Flickr: Field Guide Birds of the World
- Broad-billed sandpiper media at ARKive