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Long-billed Curlew

Long-billed Curlew
Photo Information
Copyright: Manyee Desandies (manyee) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3089 W: 230 N: 6774] (23770)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2005-06-13
Categories: Birds
Camera: Canon Powershot S1-IS
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): Animal portraits [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2005-06-19 3:37
Viewed: 3137
Points: 22
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
This shot was taken at the Monterey Bay Aquarium aviary.

Numenius americanus

You can identify these birds by their long, downward-curving bills and their large size—they’re the largest sandpipers and the largest shorebirds in North America. Curlews use their long bills to probe deeply under soil and mud for insects, worms and burrowing spiders. Their dark, earthy-colored backs, speckled with buff and white, camouflage curlews on grassland breeding grounds. Their underparts are cinnamon colored.

Curlews breed in grasslands and dry open prairies in the western United States and southern Canada. The nest is a scrape in the ground lined with grass, weeds and plant stems. Their clutch size is about four eggs. After the chicks hatch, the adults lead them to areas of denser grass, where they feed mostly on grasshoppers.

Species Information
insects, fly larvae, aquatic insects, molluscs, crustaceans, small amphibians 
23 inches (58 cm) from tip of tail to tip of bill, 24 inches (65 cm) tall, wing span 35 inches (90 cm)  
summer: moist meadows, grasslands, and prairies in the western United States and southern Canada
winter: coastal mudflats and marshes from northern California to Guatemala 
whimbrel, marbled godwit; Family: Scolopacidae (sandpipers) 
Conservation Notes
Because the number of long-billed curlews in the United States is declining, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has declared these birds a highly imperiled species. Cultivation of native grassland breeding habitats and commercial development of curlews’ wintering grounds have contributed to the population decline of long-billed curlews. 
Cool facts
Long-billed curlew chicks hatch after about four weeks. Even though they’re able to walk and feed themselves shortly after hatching, their parents care for them until the chicks can fend for themselves—usually about 45 days later. Long-billed curlews mature late, and since the female has only one clutch of four eggs per season, their population growth is slow.

To defend their nests, curlews feign injuries to lead predators away from their eggs and chicks. Sometimes curlew neighbors assist them by calling and diving at predators.

The curlew’s call—cur-lee—not its bill shape, gives this bird its common name. 


liquidsunshine, sAner, danieltowsey, marhowie, TAZ, cedryk has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To sAner: Headmanyee 2 06-20 02:37
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Critiques [Translate]

Great capture Manyee,
Well composed, good sharp detail, good colours, good POV and nicely exposed.
Thanks for posting

  • Great 
  • sAner Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1455 W: 74 N: 1426] (4750)
  • [2005-06-19 4:36]
  • [+]

This is great Manyee! One of your best portraits so far imo. Very well framed, sharp detals, good, low POV and I love the blue BG. What a beak! Well done & TFS!


I like the way you took this Manyee,
the crop is very nice, with the super details, good composed, very nice job thats a fact for me,
gr. Jaap

Excellent portrait of the L.B. Curlew.
Well done on the composition and details.


  • Great 
  • twin Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 244 W: 17 N: 494] (3259)
  • [2005-06-19 13:49]

warm light... so clear...
and a very beautiful framing...
great portrait...
thanks a lot for sharing Manyee

  • Great 
  • livios Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2150 W: 319 N: 4263] (16942)
  • [2005-06-19 22:30]

Manyee, this is beautiful and excellent.

Great sharpness, pose, pov, composition and contrast.

A perfect and very pleasant picture.

  • Great 
  • TAZ Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2241 W: 47 N: 3167] (10926)
  • [2005-06-20 3:30]

Superbe oiseau au long bec bien mis en valeur. Jolies couleurs, bon point de vue et bonne netteté.
Beautiful bird in this interesting & well done shot !

Great capture Manyee! Good sharpness, DOF, colors and the blue sky BG is very nice. Excellent note, Well done!

  • Great 
  • nofer Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1190 W: 366 N: 811] (2307)
  • [2005-06-20 23:31]

Excelente foto. Muito bom retrato (portrait).
Tudo muito bom.

  • Great 
  • cedryk Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 967 W: 50 N: 1722] (5270)
  • [2005-09-19 19:59]

Curlews always remind me of one Yeats' poem. Anyway - this is a nice portrait from interesting perspective. Just one remark - probably there is too much space above the bird's head. TFS! Michal

  • Great 
  • Adam73 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 208 W: 5 N: 522] (2253)
  • [2007-06-04 13:18]

very nice portrait. your shots are getting better and better. Nice colors and great sharpness. Perfect catchlight in the eye.

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