My adventures in the woods, streams, rivers, fields, and lakes of Michigan

Long-billed Dowitcher, Limnodromus scolopaceus

Note: this post, while published, is a work in progress, as are all posts in this series, My Photo Life List. My goal is to photograph every species of bird that is seen on a regular basis here in Michigan, working from a list compiled by the Michigan chapter of the Audubon Society. This will be a lifelong project, that I began in January of 2013, and as I shoot better photos of this, or any other species, I will update the post for that species with better photos when I can. While this series is not intended to be a field guide per se, my minimum standard for the photos in this series is that one has to be able to make a positive identification of the species in my photos. The information posted here is from either my observations or the Wikipedia, the online free encyclopedia, however, I have personally shot all the photos appearing in this series.

Long-billed Dowitcher, Limnodromus scolopaceus

The Long-billed Dowitcher is a medium-sized shorebird.

Adults have yellowish legs and a long straight dark bill. The body is dark brown on top and reddish underneath with spotted throat and breast, bars on flanks. The tail has a black and white barred pattern. The winter plumage is largely grey.

Their breeding habitat is wet tundra in the far north of North America and eastern Siberia. They nest on the ground, usually near water.

They migrate to the southern United States and as far south as Central America. Long-billed Dowitcher is a rare but regular visitor to western Europe, with some individuals staying for long periods.

These birds forage by probing in shallow water or on wet mud. They mainly eat insects, mollusks, crustaceans and marine worms, but also eat some plant material.

On to my photos:

Long-billed Dowitcher

Long-billed Dowitcher

Long-billed Dowitcher

Long-billed Dowitcher

Long-billed Dowitcher

Long-billed Dowitcher

Long-billed Dowitcher

Long-billed Dowitcher

This is number 64 in my photo life list, only 286 to go!

That’s it for this one, thanks for stopping by!



7 responses

  1. I wonder how much sand these birds ingest.

    March 23, 2013 at 8:11 am

    • That’s a good question, but I don’t think that it matters. Most species of birds need and ingest sand and small rocks because birds have no teeth, and the sand is held in the crop to aid in digesting their food.

      March 23, 2013 at 8:22 am

      • Yes, I knew that from my grandmother’s parakeets, but I wonder if they can over do it and O.D. on sand.These birds must get quite a lot of it.

        March 23, 2013 at 8:05 pm

      • Well, they’re still around, and I’ve never seen a dead one, so it must not happen very often. 😉 Seriously, birds have some incredible adaptations, like owls regurgitating “pellets” of what they can not digest.

        March 23, 2013 at 9:16 pm

  2. How lovely you saw these fairly close. I only have one silhoutte in a grouping of yellow legs.

    March 23, 2013 at 6:43 pm

    • As I was shooting those photos, I thought that they were going to be better than they turned out to be. I had three species of birds within 50 feet of me that I had never seen before, so it was shoot several photos of each, and move on to the next quickly. I’d really like a do over on the dowitcher.

      March 23, 2013 at 7:05 pm

      • Makes two of us!

        March 23, 2013 at 7:36 pm