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Long-billed curlew        Images © Mark A. Chappell

The startlingly long and recurved bills of long-billed curlews are usually used for probing deeply into mudflats, but I've also seen them hunting mice in newly-flooded fields.   The curlew pictured at right above above was at the mouth of the San Diego River in southern California (note the curious overhanging 'drip tip' on the upper bill).   Most of the birds were photographed at Bolsa Chica wetlands, in coastal Orange County, California.   A few were photographed in southwest Florida or the Monterey Bay area in central California.

Go to this page for images of long-billed curlews in flight, and here for pictures of curlews foraging in grassy fields.

  • Canon 1D Mk II, 1D3, 1D4, or 7D, 500 mm IS lens plus 1.4X or 2X converter, or 800 mm f5.6 IS lens (2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2016)