Bristle-thighed Curlew

Numenius tahitiensis / Kioea
BT curlew

The bristle-thighed curlew is a medium-sized shorebird that breeds in Alaska and winters on tropical Pacific islands. It has a dark brown eye stripe; a long, down-curved bill; and long, grayish-blue legs. It has a barred tail, a mottled brown back, a reddish-brown belly and rump, a streaked brown breast, and a light brown head and neck. It gets its name from the bristly feathers at the ends of its thighs. Males and females look alike. The bristle-thighed curlew is the only shorebird that can't fly during its molt.

The female lays 4 eggs in a nest in a depression in the ground. Both parents incubate the eggs for about 25 days. The chicks are precocial and leave the nest and feed themselves shortly after hatching. Both parents care for the young. The female leaves before the chicks are fledged, and the male stays with them until they fledge.

Facts About Bristle-thighed Curlew

Feeds on crustaceans, small fish, bird eggs, and snails. On the tundra during breeding season, it eats insects, seeds, and berries.
Life Span
23 years
Length: 40–44 cm (15-17 in); wingspan: 84 cm (33 in)