Mongolian: Эгэл хилэнжигүүр, Хилэн жигүүрт
French: Echasse blanche
Japanese: セイタカシギ (Seitaka-shigi)
Body length: 33-36cm (leg projection 14-17cm)
areas of shallow fresh, brackish or salt water, e.g. lagoons, saltpans,
estuaries. Migratory, generally wintering in Africa. Vagrant to Britain &
Ireland. Food mainly insects, long legs enable feeding in deeper water than
used by other waders. Nest is lined scrape on islet or near water, occasionally
a raised mound of vegetation in shallow water.
Extraordinarily elegant wader; unmistakable, with needle-fine, straight bill,
amazingly long reddish-pink legs, and black and white plumage. In flight head
and legs extended, giving bizarrely elongated outline; all-black underwing and
flicking wing action with quite pointed wings add to distinctive appearance.
♂ readily told by whole upperparts green-glossed black; ♀ has glossy brown
mantle and scapulars forming brown saddle that contrasts with black wings. ♂
averages more black on head than ♀, but much overlap and head and neck pattern
not safe difference between sexes.
Dull brown with scaly pattern of pale feather fringes, and pale-tipped
secondaries and white-tipped inner primaries; legs dull flesh. 1st year: Told
from adult so long as dull legs and juvenile flight-feathers retained; many
indistinguishable by 1st summer.